All set for a summer of great music

Johnny Marr. Picture: Elspeth Moore
Johnny Marr. Picture: Elspeth Moore
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Leeds Festival may be the big ticket, but there are plenty of other festivals in Yorkshire this summer. James Nuttall takes a look at them.

British summertime is often associated with an array of events, and one of the most-publicised and looked forward to of these is festival season.

Yorkshire’s largest pull every year is always Leeds Festival, which last year saw 90,000 music fans attend the three day event.

However, although Leeds might make the headlines every year, there are countless other festivals going on over the summer months, large and small, in Yorkshire which see thousands of faithful festival-goers flock to their fields each year.

One such festival is Bingley Music Live. Bingley has been a staple on the Yorkshire festival circuit for the last seven years. Its first event was in 2007 when From the Jam and The Charlatans headlined the two day festival. Since then, it has expanded into three days of music and seen the likes of Editors, Razorlight, Chase and Status and Primal Scream make headline appearances.

This year, 1980’s pop giants the Pet Shop Boys will close the Sunday night, after Shed Seven and Example headline on Friday and Saturday. Other acts on the main stage include Gaz Coombes, Gordon City and Chole Howl. The second stage will host acts like Eliza and the Bear and Nick Mulvey, along with countless others. As with most festivals these days, there will be an abundance of fine eateries selling food from pizza to hog roasts. Bingley will run from August 29-31.

Certain to attract a more raucous audience is the Tramlines Festival in Sheffield, which runs from July 25-27. The inner-city music festival takes place in over 70 venues throughout Sheffield, including the O2 Academy, The Leadmill and The University. There are four main stages in the city centre.

This year, notable acts to play at Tramlines will be the likes of The Cribs, Katy B, Public Enemy and Radio 1 DJ Annie Mac. In 2011, it was so successful that Tramlines was awarded Best Metropolitan Festival at the UK Festival Awards.

Music fans who are looking for a more relaxed experience on the same weekend can attend the Underneath the Stars Festival in Barnsley. Organised between Barnsley folk singer-songwriter Kate Rusby, her family production team and the Cannon Hall Open Farm, where the festival is taking place, the three day event will hosts acts 
including guitarist Richard Thompson, who has played with Elvis Costello and Robert Plant, The Puppini Sisters and Rusby herself on the Saturday night.

Underneath the Stars is the newest addition to festival season in Yorkshire, and this year will be its first ever. The idea was formed after a series of concerts at the farm which took place in previous years to raise money for the local church, pre-school and cricket club. The aim has expanded now into creating a world class festival in a purpose built big top tent. People attending the festival also have the option to pitch a tent on the camp site and there will also be a planetarium.

In North Yorkshire, Beacons Festival has been a popular one for festival goers since 2011. Taking place at Heslaker Farm on the Funkirk Estate in Skipton, Beacons is a festival exclusively for lesser-known artists and aims to give them a leg-up by allowing them to play in front of an audience of thousands.

The festival this year will run from August 7-10. Notable acts for 2014 will include the likes of Darkside, Daughter, Jon Hopkins, The Fall, and Daphni. Last year’s line-up featured Savages and Django Django.

Another North Yorkshire festival that pulls a large crowd each year is the Deer Shed Festival. In the past, Deer Shed has hosted the likes of Saint Etienne, Edwyn Collins and Dutch Uncles. The festival takes place each year at Topcliffe’s Baldersby Park, this year on July 25-27.

The sensational former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr will take the main stage on Saturday night. Friday’s festivities will be headlined by British Sea Power and Sunday night by Stornoway. Other acts which will play across the three stages are: We Were Evergreen, Wolf Alice, Toy and Cate Le Bon.

Yorkshire Festival fans always look forward to the August Bank Holiday, not just for that extra day off, but also the Galtres Parkland Festival. Annually held at Duncombe Park in Helmsley, Galtres was founded in 2005 and was originally a real ale and music festival in Crayke. Since then, it has grown in size and now has an attendance capacity of 10,000 people.

As well as the size of its audience, the festival itself has grown and now hosts an entertainment programme across eight different stages, including dance, family entertainment, theatre, and spoken word and music. Past headliners have been bands such as The Stranglers, Buzzcocks, Adam Ant and Billy Bragg.

Aside from music, the festival also offers fine wine, gourmet dining and gives the attendees the opportunity to go “glamping” in a pre-erected tent, complete with 
all the mod-cons.

Galtres has been nominated for several festival awards over the past few years. 2014’s headliners will be Morcheeba, Tricky, The Human League and Levellers.

Last but not least, no festival season would be complete without Tribfest – a festival now in its eighth year, which exclusively hosts tribute bands. This year’s line-up includes the likes of Meet Loaf, The Rex, Kings Ov Leon and Green Date. The idea behind Tribfest, which runs from August 14-17 and is held at Sledmere House, Sledmere, East Yorkshire, is to give families the opportunity to enjoy a fun and affordable weekend of music.

The festival has been nominated for Best Family Festival, Best Small Festival and the highly prestigious Best Toilets award.