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Staffordshire Moorlands Peace Tent will be at the Shrewsbury Festival

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: July 07, 2014

  • Rick Ford

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One of the largest folk festivals in the country is set to include a new feature this year – and musicians from the Staffordshire Moorlands have organised the peace-focused addition.

Shrewsbury Folk Festival is back this year with a range of talented musicians.

The event takes place during the bank holiday weekend in August and is held at the West Midlands Showground in Shrewsbury.

The festival has built in popularity since it began in August 2006 where it started in a much smaller venue and then moved to a larger venue after being overly populated. This year's Shrewsbury Folk Festival is expected to see around 28,000 visitors over the course of the weekend.

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After receiving an invitation to feature at the Shrewsbury Folk Festival, the Leek-based Peace Through Folk, an informal trust, will be pitching up their 40' by 40' single pole 'Peace Tent'.

The Peace Tent was developed by Peace Through Folk at their annual Manifold Folk Gathering at Alstonefield and will include a host of performances by a variety of folk acts - some from the Staffordshire Moorlands. The design was inspired by the Field Hospitals of the Great War itself and the shape and wooden flooring is said to lift and enhance the natural acoustics for local folk artists who will be performing in it during the weekend.

Co-director of the Peace Through Folk trust, Malcolm Hawksworth of Leek, said: "We are delighted to have been invited by the festival organisers; it is very exciting to be featuring at one of the biggest folk festivals. We could not have done it without our amazing supporters and great local acts that will be coming with us."

The 'Peace Tent 14-18' is a five year mission of the trust to commemorate the centenary of The Great War and celebrate peace and reconciliation.

Malcolm said: "Peace Tent is more than just a highly flexible self sufficient venue, it is more than just a show, it is a resource which will be a living, evolving entity, which will respond to the challenge of telling one of the greatest and most tragic human stories honestly, commemorating that which has happened and most importantly celebrating peace, fellowship and reconciliation through folk music and the performing arts. The Peace Tent performances will mainly be song and music based but also may include, drama, poems, narrative, dance, film, stills and sound and light effects - anything is possible."

Artists performing in the Peace Tent at the Shrewsbury Folk Festival include: Birdscarers, Poacher, Pete Shirley, Nine Tenths Below, The Laners, John Morris, PIVA, Rick Ford, Tom Hughes, Maureen Cunningham, Daisy Jaks, Wal Davies, Brian Bull, MC's Ken Hall and Will Morgan and MBE Ray Johnson.

Shrewsbury Folk Festival, will run from August 22 until 25. For details visit www.shrewsburyfolkfestival.co.uk.

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