There has been a folk festival in the coastal town of Sidmouth in South West England in the first week of August every year since 1955, attracting tens of thousands of visitors to over 700 diverse events.
Sidmouth Folkweek offers a wide range of activities including major folk concerts, pub sessions, workshops and master classes, social dances and colourful dance displays, family entertainment and many children's musical and craft activities. The town’s streets and venues come alive with festive atmosphere as holidaymakers and festival goers join together in a music-based holiday to remember. The festival patron is Martin Carthy MBE.
It's a big event:
Sidmouth FolkWeek is a unique week-long seaside celebration of music, dance and song taking place in the charming East Devon regency coastal resort – a must in every festival goer’s annual diary.
There has been a folk festival in Sidmouth in the first week of August every year since 1955, attracting tens of thousands of visitors to over 700 diverse events with a promise of ‘something for everyone’ – from major league concerts to small intimate sessions, from ceilidh dancing to lively roots parties, from family entertainment to youth-centred masterclasses, from social dance to colourful dance displays. The town’s streets and venues come alive with festive atmosphere as holidaymakers and festival goers join together in a music-based holiday to remember.
Sidmouth Folk week - Welcome to Sidmouth FolkWeek!
It's recognised nationally:
One of the highlights of the folk calendar, Sidmouth's folk week bulges with gigs, sessions and workshops. Main stage highlights include Show of Hands, Maddy Prior and Hannah James, Flook, Emily Portman, Capercaillie, the wonderful Lylam, Nic Jones, Lady Maisery, Faustus, Bella Hardy, and Eliza Carthy with Tim Erickson.
Must-see sessions include Crimes and Ballads led by Martin Carthy; Short Sharp Shanties with Jackie Oates, Jeff Warner and others; Jim Causley's The Poetry of Charles Causley; and the In the Tradition nights of unaccompanied traditional singers.
This was a reminder that, for all its big-names, Sidmouth is as much about spontaneous music-making in the town’s many bars as anything else. Folk music is alive and well and living in Devon.
Welcome to Eastdevon.net
Top page for Sidmouth Folk Festival section
It's very much a family thing:
The Children's Festival kicks off today - follow the colourful flags to the Blackmore Gardens for all sorts of workshops and family events!
Sidmouth FolkWeek | Facebook
There's even a Fringe:
The SVA has contributed to the event:
Conservation group boosts Sidmouth FolkWeek - What's on - Sidmouth Herald
The Folk Festival has a historical connection with the Drill Hall:
And it's vital for the local economy:
Once again I am confident that the town will pull together in 2013 to overcome the continuing financial downturn and effects of the 2012 severe weather events. We have a marvellous array of independent shops which makes our town stand out from the rest and with Stagecoach's investment of £1.5m in January on a new fleet of buses for the 52 service, this will be a great start to the new year. We can also look forward to our calendar of events that play such an important part in our local economy – Folk Week, Carnival and another Jubilee...
"Folk Week gives a welcome boost to the local economy but more importantly it shows everyone just how much Sidmouth has to offer in terms of music, dance - and just having a really good time!"
Tourism is of course important to many of the shops - but there are very few compared with the number of households. The hotels along the seafront add greatly to the ambience of the town. Any calculations of the benefit of the festival need to take into account not only its (probably small) contribution to the total tourist economy - itself a small part of Sidmouth's total income - but its contribution to making the town special and 'putting it on the map'..