The organisers of the 17th Linlithgow Folk Festival are toasting the success of this year’s event and pledging to make it even better next year.
Last week’s celebration of traditional music, dance and song had something for everyone in the five-day programme, which included three concerts, an outdoor family ceilidh at the Vennel, children’s events, musical cruises and performances at the canal centre, pub gigs and sessions, and the outdoor Nora Devine Stage at the Cross.
The list of events attracted an audience of locals and visitors alike, some coming from as far afield as France, Germany, the United States, South Africa, Israel and Australia.
The headline concert with Emily Smith and her band was the highlight of the weekend and organisers say the band spoke warmly of the wonderful welcome they had received.
The Folk Festival is now firmly established on the wider traditional music scene and has created its own distinctive identity, with unique events such as the Canal cruises and barbecue, the Bluegrass Gospel session, the outdoor ceilidh at the Vennel and the Nora Devine Stage at the Cross.
New events also took place this year, including a Blues Night in the bowling club and a children’s show on the Nora Devine Stage, featuring the Linlithgow Community Children’s’ Choir and other local youngsters.
The stage also played host to many budding artistes over the weekend and those taking part included the Kearns sisters, 18-year-old Katee Kross and the Falkirk Young Trad Band.
Folk Festival Chairman Murdoch Kennedy said: “The festival gets better every year and we had record numbers at both the Bluegrass Night, the Gospel session and the outdoor Family Ceilidh. From the opening night in the bowling club to the final party in the West Port, we heard some of the best music we have ever had.
“Several first-time visitors said it was the best festival they had ever been to and one that people from all over the country should attend. That reputation is down to the hard work and dedication of our committee. We are constantly trying new things and look forward to doing so again next year.
“We already have some tremendous partner organisations and hope to encourage many more local organisations and individuals to get involved.”