Sidmouth Folk Festival director’s welcoming message to event goers

PUBLISHED: 14:00 02 August 2019 | UPDATED: 14:00 02 August 2019

Sidmouth Folk Festival director John Braithwaite. Picture: Hazel Braithwaite

Sidmouth Folk Festival director John Braithwaite. Picture: Hazel Braithwaite

Hazel Braithwaite

Now in its 65th year, our vibrant Festival starts a new era, with refreshed branding and a clearer name,

Relaxing on the Ham during the festival. Picture: Sidmouth Folk FestivalRelaxing on the Ham during the festival. Picture: Sidmouth Folk Festival

Now in its 65th year, our vibrant festival starts a new era, with refreshed branding and a clearer name, The Sidmouth Folk Festival; 'still uniquely glorious and gloriously unique'.

One of the highest profile folk events in the world, the festival offers huge diversity to suit all tastes, ages and interests. Its scope is unique, stretching from performances by the biggest names to a 10 person masterclass, via 270 workshops, concerts of all sizes and styles, storytelling and every variety of folk dance, with a new in-town main venue. To avoid missing out, plan carefully to make the most of what's on offer.

Our next era will be as exciting and demanding as the last. We aim to meet the challenge of our customers' expectations and developments in the festival arena. Be assured though that we won't lose sight of our unique, special Sidmouth attributes; the things that persuade you to spend up to eight days in this lovely, flower-laden town on Devon's extraordinary red coastline, where everyone can create their own festival.

I'm really looking forward to The Ham concert venue programme, our strongest in years, with great shows at lunchtimes and in the afternoons, plus blockbuster evenings. Don't miss The Bulverton Big Nights Out, Kennaway House's 'Cellar Full of Folkadelia' and Bedford Hotel-based EFDSS Presents concerts. Plus all our other town venues offering huge choice and superb quality.

The Bulverton. Picture: Sidmouth Folk FestivalThe Bulverton. Picture: Sidmouth Folk Festival

Experience that unique folk festival atmosphere across the town, with music and dance everywhere.

Young people get a special place at our festival. The setting for the children's festival in the town centre, Blackmore Gardens, is idyllic. The youth programme offers the next stage with energetic and challenging activities - never a dull moment with Shooting Roots!

Food is important too, so we have brought in a celebrated local restaurant and event caterer, the Rusty Pig, as the main caterer at the Ham, and extra food offerings at The Bulverton. Drinks also feature, with our bars serving Gloucester's Wickwar Brewing Company ales, Crediton's Sandford Orchards prize-winning ciders, plus wines, spirits and cocktails.

The festival is very big and complex. To make it happen, our many supporters, the three councils and partner organisations including fRoots, EFDSS, Creative Scotland, Hobgoblin and Halsway Manor play a vital role - thank you. We are also particularly grateful to our local sponsors - thanks for your essential support. Finally, we rely on our 500 volunteers and the core team - thank you too for your time and skills.

Sidmouth welcomes you to the 65th great Festival. Enjoy every moment and bring your memories back with you in 2020.

John Braithwaite, Festival Director

Environmental 2019

This year will see the introduction of reusable souvenir drinks cups at our bars, no single-use plastics at our catering stands and zero waste to land fill through our new waste management system. Why not bring your own reusable drinks bottle and use our water refill points? These are located at The Ham, the Market Square (on the side of the Market building towards the town), in the 'arches' on the seafront (at the western end of the Esplanade), below the cricket ground, at the campsite and at The Bulverton (in the garden area).

These are just some of the initiatives we are implementing as we continue to reduce our reliance on single-use plastics and make the festival a more environmentally sustainable event.

Accessibility 2019

For 2019 we have simplified the process for obtaining a personal assistant ticket and as an ongoing process we are improving the accessibility information that we provide. Please email if you have any questions relating to accessibility.

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Sidmouth Herald. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Latest from the Sidmouth Herald