Disappointment as Fleetwood Folk and Blues Festival is cancelled

A popular Fleetwood music festival which was set to be staged next month has been cancelled.

By Richard Hunt
Saturday, 6th August 2022, 5:00 pm
Updated Monday, 8th August 2022, 2:52 pm

The Fleetwood Folk and Blues Festival was due to be staged at the town’s Marine Hall and other venues over the first weekend of September.

Known for its sing-arounds, acoustic concerts, fairs, sessions, spoken word and stories from an array of renowned talent, the event has proved a lively attraction in recent years, prior to the Covid lockdown.

Headline acts booked for this year’s event included three-piece folk band Faustus and members of contemporary folk group Bellowhead, along with many other performers.

Rachael Bailey, founder of the Fleetwood Folk and Blues Festival

The festival was founded by Rachael Bailey in 2015 as a smaller successor to the long-running Fylde Folk Festival, which had been run in Fleetwood by folk musician Alan Bell for more than 40 years until his retirement .

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Plans for this year’s event had been well underway before Rachael made an unexpected announcement this week to say the event was off.

The keen music fan said she was bitterly disappointed at having to cancel the festival.

Three piece folk act Faustus were due to perform at the Fleetwood Folk and Blues Festival

A statement read: “It is with deepest regret and a heavy heart that I have taken the drastic action to withdraw the festival this year.

"This decision has been completely made due to a situation that is totally out of my control.

“Many of you know Fleetwood Folk and Blues is my baby and to have to cancel the whole weekend in 2022 is soul destroying, after all my work.

“Please understand that this has been a most difficult decision, however financially, emotionally, logically, with my business head on, there is no other way.

"There are no available/suitable venues available in Fleetwood, so as the expression goes 'over a barrel' it seems.”

“The amazing artistes we had booked, venues and outstanding team of volunteers are aware of my decision and reasons behind it.”

Online ticket sales are already in the process of being refunded and she has advised those who paid by cheque to email her the details.

Rachael said she did not wish to comment further at this time on the decision to pull the event.