Friday, 10 August 2012

Ramsbottom Festival 2012

In 2011 Ramsbottom made it's debut on the festival circuit. It featured a diverse line up of acts and entertainment for all the family. The festival is set under the shadow of Holcombe Hill and Peel Tower at Ramsbottom Cricket Club. 2011 included appearances from, Mark Radcliffe, Badly Drawn Boy, The Waterboys, Guillemots, Kid British and Otis Gibbs amongst others.

Away from the music, Ramsbottom hosted an impressive line up of food outlets including Tibetan kitchen and a beer tent featuring many locally brewed beers, including the festival's own brew. With rides for the kids and performance areas that included an appearance form the Whalley Range All Stars, you could be forgiven for thinking Glastonbury had been compacted and move in to the Cricket Club for the weekend. 

The festival returns this year with a strong live line including headline performances from The Inspirals Carpets, I Am Kloot and Roddy Frame. With reasonably priced tickets and perhaps the best mode of transport to arrive at any festival, Victoria Robinson told us more about Ramsbottom Festival.

Why did you decide to hold a festival in Ramsbottom?

The Festival is organised by The Met and as a venue and organisation serving the community in Bury we needed somewhere local to the area. Ramsbottom was an obvious choice for us. It's a fantastic town with lots to offer visitors and the Cricket Club is bang in the centre and a great venue for music!

Is it important for the festival to work with local community?

Absolutely. Although we are a small festival with big ambition we quite simply would not have got to our second year without local support. Both the sell out early bird tickets and the army of volunteers have proved that the community want this event to work as much as we do, which is a lovely feeling!

How would you describe the festival in one sentence?

Very difficult question. "The very best Manchester and Lancashire has to offer in music, comedy, workshops, food and booze in a stunning riverside location and the only Festival in the the UK accessible by steam train."

Would you say the festival has something for everyone of all ages?

Of course! We've worked very hard to make the Festival as inclusive as possible, from ticket price to travel. Kids and adult tickets are as low as we could possibly make them and under 6s are free. There will be tons of activities for kids (young and old!), great food, great music, great comedy, workshops, a funfair and a silent disco if the choice is just too much! Arriving by steam train is an absolute must for families or there is also camping available if you want to get into the full festival vibe.

What makes Rammsbottom festival different to other festivals?

We've tried to balance established names with really talented rising stars. So for example you have the Inspirals and I Am Kloot with being supported by the likes of the Janice Graham Band and people like Liz Green (winner of Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition) who are bursting with talent. We've also got a bit more to offer - it's fun, affordable and friendly for kids so no need to get a baby sitter.

The atmosphere of the Festival last year was amazing - people genuinely loved the weekend and wanted more. This year we've lowered the ticket price and increased the entertainment - other festivals couldn't say that! As mentioned above we're the only Festival where you can take a step back in time and arrive by heritage steam train - we might be the only festival in the world to offer that!

The real ale bar was great last year, will there be a 'festival ale' again this year?

Local to Ramsbottom, Irwell Works Brewery are currently hard at work brewing tons of the Festival ale. We are all looking forward to sampling the goods before the weekend!

Which artist are you most looking forward to seeing this year?

For me it's the Inspirals. I've been listening to them from the age of 13 and never seen them live. Although I'm actually looking forward to every day so can I also add Liz Green, Leisure Society, I Am Kloot, Seth Lakeman, Magic Arm, Molly Bloom, Louis Barabbas and the Bedlam Six and Harp and a Monkey? Oh and dancing in the Silent disco with Mike Joyce and Clint Boon DJing. So pretty much everyone!

Is there any artists you would have like to have had playing this year that couldn't make it?

I love the line up this year but it would be an absolute dream to have Elbow headline one day.

Rain or Shine this year?

Shine - we haven't had any summer yet! Although the weather doesn't really make any difference - it's tons of fun rain or shine.

What's the long term future for the festival?
We want to make this an annual event and are keen to do so. If we continue to get the level of support from the community, Council and police and The Met still has capacity and enthusiasm to organise it I can see it lasting long into the future. 

Victoria Robinson is Marketing Manager for Ramsbottom Festival & The Met, Bury.

Tickets are still available for Ramsbottom Festival online, over the phone and in person here

As well as arriving by steam train at the festival, transport is available from Manchester and Chorlton. The festival also offers 'off site' camping. For more information about Ramsbottom Festival visit the official website

Follow Ramsbottom festival on twitter and facebook

For more information about The Met, Bury visit the venue's website

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