Burnley's historic Sandygate will come to life again with vibrant performances, and magical family activities for the Burnley Canal Festival 2018.
The dynamic celebration of Burnley’s peerless canal heritage will occupy its regular slot on Bank Holiday weekend, August 25th and 26th as usual, but festival goers are promised a surprise or two this year.
Organisers are delighted to announce:
• A new look to the festival site, based around Sandygate Square but extending across the canal and into the reopened Victoria Mill, as well as along the towpath and on the water.
• A new range of festival partners, including principal sponsor University of Central Lancashire, as they move into canalside and reopen the landmark heritage building, Victoria Mill.
• A full festival programme including two days of music stage, a huge range of have-a-go free workshops, a Towpath Explorers family quest and much more.
The Festival Hub will be on Sandygate Square, but activities will stretch across the canal to the UCLan Canalside Carnival around and in Victoria Mill.
AMS Neve is sponsoring the Music Stage allowing a two day programme of music this year. A glorious array of global sounds from grass roots to global artists. Expect an exceptional programme of incredible music including folk, blues, soul, reggae to name a few. Over the two day programme expect to hear a world sound landscape to suit every musical palette. Including the Rajasthan Heritage Brass Band on Saturday, who will bring their unique and diverse repertoire spanning Rajasthani folk songs, Bollywood hits, Bhangra beats and pop songs.
The Calico Group, Burnley Bondholders, Burnley Borough Council, Barnfield and Burnley Developments and the Stocks Massey Bequest Fund complete the picture of the generous organisations who have helped the festival remain a free event.
Laurie Peake, director of Super Slow Way, said: “The festival celebrates one of Burnley’s greatest assets, the canal: with art, music and great family entertainment, and all five minutes from the town centre.
"The canalside is a natural oasis and a heritage gem that tells the story of the town, providing a wonderful backdrop to the fabulous performances and fun activities, from canoeing to a towpath treasure trail – not to mention the good food.”
Michael Ahern, UCLan chief operating officer, said: “We are very proud of being a major civic institution in Burnley and this festival is a fantastic opportunity for us to engage with a wide variety of community groups and members of the public.
"It’s a very exciting time for us with our major investment in Victoria Mill so this is a great chance for the people of Burnley and beyond to come and see what we’re all about.”
Nick Hunt, creative director of Mid Pennine Arts, said: “We are delighted to announce a range of new and returning partners as our festival sponsors, and especially to welcome our new principal sponsor UCLan, as they arrive in our canalside neighbourhood, which is such hugely exciting news for the Weavers’ Triangle.
"All our sponsors are vital in helping keep this brilliant event free to attend. Our grateful thanks to them and also to Super Slow Way, whose support makes the festival possible.”