IT has been announced that next year’s Leigh Folk Festival has been cancelled.
Leigh Folk Arts, the organisers behind the festival, announced a “fallow year”, adding that they were struggling to find new members to join, in addition to cost of living, and production costs.
The festival celebrated its 30th anniversary last year.
Since 1992, the event has been a highlight of the Leigh and Southend calendar, which takes over the town with a variety of music, comedy, folk dancing, and much more.
In a statement, the Leigh Folk Festival said: “For nearly 32 years, Leigh Folk Festival has been a highlight in the Leigh and Southend events calendar.
“However, the organising committee has made the hard decision to take a fallow year in 2024.
“The festival is run by arts charity Leigh Folk Arts, with the event organised by a committee of volunteers.
“Over the past few years, the committee has struggled to find new members to join, lead and carry the baton into the next generation.
“This, coupled with the cost-of-living crisis and the ever-increasing production costs, has made it very difficult to produce a 2024 event. However, we believe this is the best decision for the event’s future.
“This fallow year allows the charity to regroup, strengthen, recruit and fundraise for a return in 2025, ensuring we’re back bigger and better than ever.”
The charity added that they intend to run a few events next year as part of their fundraising initiative: “We’re not going to sit still, with a number of smaller events planned throughout 2024 to help raise funds for the charity, and in turn, the festival.”
The charity also asked for willing volunteers for 2025 to join the team: “If you know anyone who may be interested in joining the Leigh Folk Festival team, helping to organise the event or fundraise, then please email: [email protected].”
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