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Norfolk Tourism Awards

Glemham: Folkeast returns to Glemham Hall

FolkEast is for all ages

FolkEast is for all ages


Thousands of folk-lovers will flock through the gates of Suffolk’s Glemham Hall later this month to listen to the likes of the award-winning Bellowhead, Blowzabella, Peter Knight’s Gigspanner and Jim Moray and Sam Carter’s debut performance as new venture False Lights.

Bellowhead will perform. Photo: Tom BarnesBellowhead will perform. Photo: Tom Barnes

FolkEast, run by husband and wife team John and Becky Marshall-Potter, who have sold their house to follow their festival dream, consists of four music stages, numerous tents, food stalls and marquees playing host to workshops, local artists and craftspeople, dance, ceilidhs, talks and much more.

Oganisers also announced Teeside-based The Young’uns as its first-ever patrons.

They will be actively involved with FolkEast, working with it to promote folk music as a living tradition. The trio will also perform an exclusive patrons’ set at each festival from this year onwards.

“We’re thrilled to become FolkEast’s first patrons. Other than being very flattered, we had no hesitation in accepting the role because FolkEast is such a young and exciting festival. It’s already got a very distinct and extremely welcoming personality and we look forward to helping shape how FolkEast develops over the years,” says founder member Michael Hughes.

New festival patrons The Young 'UnsNew festival patrons The Young 'Uns

The Church of St Andrew on the estate will also act as an intimate venue, with the programme including Robb Johnson’s Gentle Men, a musically acclaimed personal family history of the First World War and its consequences.

“Once again we have put together a fantastic mix of music, dance, artists and crafts people to show off the area’s incredible mix of talent,” says Mr Marshall-Potter, adding they are sourcing most of the event infrastructure from the area to help keep money in the local economy.

Working towards their carbon charter, Amy Wragg’s Get on the Soapbox Stage will be run using a solar-powered bus.

“The majority of food and drink available on site this year is produced locally in a sustainable way, which also enables us to sell it at fair prices. All the ale in the beer tent is £3 per pint including our very own Cobbold FolkEast Festival Ale brewed by award-winning brewer Mark Bartram.”

As well as the regular food outlets, The Imagined Suffolk Food Village - the brainchild of David Grimwood of The Froize Restaurant - brings together some of Suffolk’s best known food producers to deliver a new take on festival fare and includes The Pump Street Bakery and The Artisan Smokehouse.

There will be food-related activities in the giant double tipi including a foraging talk from Julie Foster and a pigeon plucking demonstration.

All folk, big and small, are catered for with a wide range of art and music workshops.

The Clay Academy returns with chances to make your own tiles and fire your own pot in a raku kiln while the Social Knitworks tent will be filled with yarn bombed items themed around the house and garden. There will be knitting and crocheting workshops throughout the weekend.

As seen on George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces, the Vintage Mobile Cinema takes pride of place beside the Calamitea Jane’s Vintage Tea Tent and there is a vintage market.

Printmaker Mandy Walden brings a host of local artists to demonstrate their craft and sell their wares in the Art Arcade, while wandering artists Michael Cudmore and Lisa Adamczewski will be collecting their impressions of the festival as sketches over the weekend.

A new local group will showcase a range of Suffolk heritage craft skills, including the chance to try your hand at rope making with members of The International Boat Building Course from Oulton Broad.

Local pubs are also involved, with the Blaxhall Ship and the Crown at Great Glemham hosting fringe programmes of Morris and music sessions.

Glemham Hall owner Philip Hope-Cobbold will host guided tours of the house and head gardener Steve Coghill will show visitors around the gardens. Tickets must be booked in advance via or at the information tent on site.

FolkEast 2014 will be held in the grounds of Glemham Hall in Suffolk from August 15-17. For more info about the festival and its fringe events, visit There is also a Kickstarter campaign organised by documentary maker Tim Higham to raise funds to film a year of FolkEast preparations called The Road to Glemham Hall.

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