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Leek Arts Festival continues in the Staffordshire Moorlands

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: May 21, 2014

By Belinda Hargreaves

  • Joni Talks

  • Joni Talks.

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With Leek Arts Festival fans flocking to events in this year's programme organisers have confirmed they are already starting work on planning for 2015.

Sell-out events so far this year have included Richard Digance, Mark Radcliffe and the Foes, plus Fairport Convention, while ticket sales for others – such as The Roving Crows and Burbage Brass band – have more than covered the costs involved in staging them.

Other events selling fast include Gavin Sutherland and The Vice Bishops on May 31 and the Birmingham Conservatoire Folk Ensemble on June 12.

Festival spokesman Phil Edmeades said he was confident that unlike last year, when falling audience figures saw the Festival Committee lose over £4,000 on events, this year would see the Festival at least break even if not make a small profit.

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Phil said: "We had to do some soul-searching after last year's financial losses and there was a real risk that Leek Arts Festival could have come to an end.

"However, this year things are different again and we are delighted by the number of people coming along to events and enjoying themselves."

Phil revealed that planning for Leek Arts Festival 2015 is already under way – even before this year's programme has come to an end.

He said: "Bringing Richard Digance to Leek proved a huge hit with every ticket sold and people clamouring for more. After Richard's performance on May 6 we had so many people asking us to do something similar next year that we have already been in touch with the people who manage acts like Jasper Carrott and Mike Harding to see if we can do a deal for next May.

"At this stage we can't make any firm promises, but we are actively looking for someone of that stature for next year's festival."

Events in the Leek Arts Festival programme over the next seven days:

Tonight (Wednesday May 21): The Ted Cullinan Lecture – renowned architect Ted Cullinan talks about his work designing and overseeing construction of the Maggie's Cancer Care Centre in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. The Foxlowe, 7.30pm. Free event but donations welcome on the night.

Friday May 23: Funk Station – disco, funk and soul from the eight-piece Leek-based band. The Foxlowe, 8pm. Tickets £5 from Leek TIC or The Foxlowe.

Saturday May 24: Leek and the First World War, a guided walk. Meet Bill Cawley outside Leek Tourist Information Centre, 10.30am. Tickets £5 on the day.

Saturday May 24: A Night At The Musicals. Joni Talks performs songs from all the big shows. The Foxlowe, 7.30pm Tickets £7.50 from The Foxlowe.

Sunday May 25: The Peak District Big Band, directed by John Milner, present an evening of swing classics and big band sounds. The Foxlowe, 8pm. Tickets £4 from The Foxlowe.

Tuesday May 27: Foxlowe Films present Renoir (Cert 12) at The Foxlowe.

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