Countdown begins for 9th Lancaster Music Festival 2017

July 19, 2017 - 9:00am

Countdown begins for 9th Lancaster Music Festival 2017

There's less than one hundred days to go the ninth incarnation of the Lancaster Music Festival.

The festival started back in 2009 as a three-day event highlighting the wide array of talent performing for free in Lancaster's city-centre pubs and has grown year on year to be the premiere event in the city over five days and incorporating Lancaster's unique "Unofficial Bank Holiday ".

Last year over five hundred performances at over forty venues brought an estimated 70,000 individual visits to the city and created a revenue boost of nearly two million pounds.

Festival Coordinator, Ben Ruth says, "It's great that the people of Lancaster have taken the festival to their hearts from day one, supporting the city's vibrant live music scene during the festival and throughout the year and now we're seeing more and more visitors from all over the UK and even from the continent staying in the city for the weekend.”

This year's festival promises to be the biggest and best yet with a number of new innovations of which the heritage bus service may be the most noticeable, as two classic double decker buses runs every half an hour between the city centre and the more peripheral venues (yes, there will be bands on the buses!)

As well as taking to the roads, this year’s festival will also for the first time take to the local waters, as a number of barge owners on Lancaster Canal hosting live music (and possibly offering an ad hoc musical water taxi service) to help promote the work of the Lancaster Canal Trust.

There are also a number of new venues this year including The Britannia and the Bowerham Hotel bringing the total of 2017 performance locations to nearly fifty.

Once again, in partnership with the Duchy of Lancaster, the festival main stage will be hosted by Lancaster Castle highlighting top local and international talent not just from the UK but including acts from as far away as Brazil, North America, Africa and Eastern Europe. Admission to the castle will be £2 per visit on Friday and Saturday or £5 for unlimited entry on both days. Sunday will see the launching of the festival’s first headline act courtesy of Fiesta Bombarda (details to be announced shortly).

The festival receives no public funding and is entirely dependent on the generosity of our sponsors and the income brought in from castle admissions, sales of T-shirts and festival brochures as well as the thousands of hours of professional production given freely by the event team. With a direct audience expected to exceed 80,000 this year, not to mention well over 100,000 reached on the social media campaign, the festival is an ideal opportunity for businesses to raise their awareness on the District and (at the time of going to press) there are still sponsorship options for the Castle main stage available.

One of the many unique elements of the festival is the variety of performance spaces and once again a number of squares in the city will be host to family-friendly events. Outdoor Events Coordinator, Lucy Reynolds says: "Bringing the festival out into the streets means reaching a much wider audience as we can interact with those of all ages who don't have access to the pubs and clubs of the city. In particular I'm really looking forward to Turnaround Dance Theatre who will be performing their aerial dance show The Thief, the Fox and the Phoenix, for family audiences on Sunday afternoon in Market Square.

"Festivalgoers have given great support to the performance in the squares in previous years and there's always a happy, friendly vibe throughout the weekend. It's great to see people grinning from ear to ear and to see our own residents truly glowing with pride in the wonderful place they live."

The festival runs from Thursday October 12th through to the unofficial Bank Holiday on Monday 16th. As Ben Ruth says: "If you can, do take Monday off, we guarantee it'll be worth it!"

LINKS AND ADDITIONAL CONTACTS: (festival home page) (Festival Facebook page) (Festival Twitter feed)

Lancaster Visitor Information Centre,
The Storey, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TH
Call: 01524 582394