Award-winning Oysterband among Stepping Stones festival headliners


The line-up for this summer’s Stepping Stones festival includes internationally-renowned names and local favourites.

Joining Maddy Prior at her own festival, at Kirklinton Hall, near Longtown, this June are the Oysterband, Nancy Kerr and James Fagan and Maddy’s own Carnival Band, all headlining the marquee stage.

Oysterband started off as a ceilidh band in the late 1970s, have recorded numerous albums, toured internationally, won five BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and collaborated with the likes of June Tabor.

Perennial favourites Anglo-Australian duo Nancy Kerr and James Fagan are regulars on the Cumbrian folk scene, with their own fair share of wins at the folk awards.

Maddy Prior recently picked up the Lifetime Achievement prize at the Culture Awards in Keswick, and, alongside The Carnival Band, will be playing music from across the centuries and sounds from around the world.

The three-day festival – running from Friday, June 9 to Sunday, June 11 – also includes performances from BOC Mallorca (who have established themselves in their homeland with their flamenco-tinged folk and roots), Jammshed, Hicks and Goulbourn, Hardwicke Circus, Hefted and Ian K Brown.

Lower down the order there is an array of UK names, such as Ben Maggs, Shipcote and Friends, the newly reformed Hadrian’s Union, Henry Maybury, Big Blue, Jake In The Box, Tenth Avenue Band, Tilly Moses, Delta Sunrise, The Hedgehog’s Skin and The Misdemeanours and more still to be announced.

Away from the marquee stage, the hall stage will provide music from a wide range of local acts, and The Bandstand, set in the centre of the craft village, is the venue for acoustic and dance acts while wandering musicians may pop up anywhere to busk.

There is also a full children’s programme and open mic events, making Stepping Stones a full weekend of music, dance, local food, beer and crafts, set against the backdrop of Kirklinton Hall.

Weekend tickets cost £75, free entry for accompanied under-16s, from No dogs allowed apart from assistance dogs, for which you need a free advance ticket.

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