Visitors flock to celebrate all things folk

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival
Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Hundreds joined together in the Calder Valley to enjoy a weekend full of festival fun at the Todmorden Folk Festival.

Bands including, Outside the Box and Catfish Skillet performed over the course of the weekend, as well as one of the 14 Clog Dancing team, Oakenhoof Cloggers.

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

The festival has been running for two years now, and was set up by organisers, Ester Ferry-Kinnington, Richard Parkes and Lynne Midwinter, who have been ovewhelmed by the response the festival has had.

“All we wanted to do was try and celebrate current folk music”, said Mrs Midwinter. “We take folk in it’s widest forms to try and get everyone involved, everyone seems to think we are boring until they get involved and then they learn to love it.”

The 48-year-old is the partner of co-organiser Richard Parkes, and works as a physiotherapist during the week

“It all started off with a conversation between the three of us in November 2014, we started off with a budget of zero, but after getting funding off the Calderdale Council we managed to pull off the event, and even made profit,” she added.

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

“Now with the money we make we are able to pay the local bands, and encourage them to come back and get involved.

“The council were very keen to help us fund this year, as we wanted to aim a lot of the events at children.”

With the festival celebrating ‘all things local’, all the venues involved were encouraged to use the upper Calder Valley-based Little Valley Brewery.

“It’s important to us that we keep things as local as we can. We try and contact local bands and most of the pubs around the area get involved.”

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Around 50 people volenteered at the festival to spread the festival spirit, and more than 250 bought weekend passes to make the most of the event.

Next year’s event will be held on April 28 to 30.

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival

Morris dancing at Todmorden Folk Festival