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Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Ancient traditions revived at Ulverston festival

THE 14th Furness Tradition Festival saw ancient traditions revived in the modern age.

The three-day celebration of folk music, dance and storytelling returned to Ulverston at the weekend with a packed festival programme featuring crafts and dancing displays, concerts, storytelling sessions and workshops.

This year’s festival highlight was an extra show, Must Come Down, performed at the Coronation Hall on Saturday.

The stunning performance combined the talents of storyteller Debs Newbold with a cast of renowned folk musicians, including Becky Price and Gavin Davenport, and a troupe of dancers.

Other highlights of the festival included performances by musicians including Tim Edey – musician of the year at the BBC Folk Awards 2012 – traditional dance groups and jam
sessions held at venues across the town.

Organisers haven’t yet finalised this year’s visitors figures, but Furness Tradition secretary Les Ord said weekend ticket sales were up on last year.

He added: “Every event was pretty well attended. Must Come Down was absolutely fantastic. All seats were taken and the show was great.

“They took the morris dance and choreographed it, still using the traditional steps, woven in with a storyteller and music and songs. It made it into a show, rather than just a dance.

“We were really lucky to get it in this town as it was only the second time it had been performed.

“The day after it went to London and they are doing one more in August at Sidmouth Folk Festival.”

Mr Ord said the committee was soon set to begin planning and fundraising for next year’s festival.

Any businesses or individuals who would like to support it are asked to visit furnesstradition.org.uk.

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