“It’s like opening a box of magic that stays wide open for two weeks” – audience member 


Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, to everyone who made the 2017 Festival such a rip-roaring success.

In our most ambitious Festival yet we featured young musicians at the beginning of sparkling careers alongside veteran supergroups. Intimate duets, explosive folk and reimagined baroque. Choirs, orchestras, woodwind, brass, strings, pianos, and also slaptops, santouris, nyckelharpas, gothic harps and the amazing tromba marina. Idyllic outdoor Shakespeare, poetry readings, film screenings, talks, inspiring art exhibitions and a series of guided walks to celebrate our magical landscape. Clog-dancing, Canadian step dancing, traditional Zulu dancing and the story of the world’s first ballet. World premieres and commissions by, amongst others, the composer Alexander Goehr. 

It all took place in village churches, tiny chapels, heritage buildings and large halls, with audience members ranging from infants to 90+ year-olds. Top musicians performed in schools and care homes for the elderly, and our National Youth Jazz Orchestra children's concert in Catterick Garrison was broadcast to schools and British forces bases all over the world. And we won't forget the impromptu appearance of Led Zeppelin's John Paul Jones and our double bass-playing Artistic Director Malcolm Creese with John Potter's 'Amores Pasados' (pictured).

Sincere thanks to everyone who attended our events this year. There were more of you than ever before in our 46 year history, and ticket sales reached an all-time high.

It’s over, and yet it’s so far from over. Our extensive community and education programme is rolling and we’re already planning Swaledale Festival 2018 and 2019. 

The Festival is extremely grateful for the generosity of our sponsors, funders, donors, legacy givers, Festival Friends and Angels, as well as the tireless work and dedication of our loyal volunteers, our staff, and members of the Festival Board.  

Swaledale Festival receives support from Arts Council England and from generous sponsors including Sherwoods (Vauxhall) of Darlington, Handelsbanken, Latimer Hinks Solicitors, Kenneth Easby Accountants,  Purple Creative Studio, Tennants Garden Rooms, Millgate House B&B in Richmond, the Burgoyne Hotel in Reeth and the Bridge Inn in Grinton. We are also supported by a number of Local Businesses shown here.

Missing the Festival? You can live with Swaledale Festival all year round with our vibrant 2018 calendar. £10.00 including postage and packing. Please call our office on 01748 880018 to order yours.      


Recent News

A Quarter for a Quarter

A Quarter for a Quarter

Bells at Grinton

A quarter peal was rung to celebrate a 25th (quarter century) birthday - and the installation of two new bells - as part of the Swaledale Festival.

A Pantomime Horse Race

A Pantomime Horse Race

Purple raise the stakes

Purple ride to help St Teresa's

The Swaledale Festival is in full (and uproarious) swing

The Swaledale Festival is in full (and uproarious) swing

The two-week festival of music, arts and walking launched on Friday 26 May with the opening of JAZZ! – a vibrant art exhibition by primary and secondary pupils at The Station gallery in Richmond.