‘It’s a tri­umph to give peo­ple a rea­son to come to Mac­cles­field for arts and cul­ture’

Macclesfield Express - - BARNABY FESTIVAL -

THE sixth Barn­aby Fes­ti­val blasted off fol­low­ing a launch on Fri­day (June 17) with speeches by broad­cast jour­nal­ist Nick Robin­son and Pro­fes­sor Teresa Anderson MBE, di­rec­tor of Jo­drell Bank Discovery Cen­tre.

More than 150 dig­ni­taries, artists, vol­un­teers, spon­sors and sup­port­ers gath­ered in Mac­cles­field’s United Re­form Church at Park Green.

Prest­bury born Nick Robin­son said that he used to tell peo­ple he was from Mac­cles­field as it gave him more street cred. Rem­i­nisc­ing about his time grow­ing up here he said: “The only cul­ture was The Ma­jes­tic cin­ema. It gives me great joy to see what is be­ing achieved here.”

Re­flect­ing on what Barn­aby has done for the town, Robin­son con­tin­ued: “My fa­ther used to say that Mac­cles­field was a great place to live be­cause there were so many places to visit like Tegg’s Nose and Wild­boar­clough, with easy ac­cess to Manch­ester for en­ter­tain­ment.

“It’s a tri­umph for Barn­aby that they are giv­ing peo­ple a rea­son to stay and to come to Mac­cles­field for arts and cul­ture.”

He thanked the or­gan­is­ers and the very many vol­un­teers for what they have achieved.

Barn­aby Fes­ti­val has forged a rep­u­ta­tion as one of the best of its kind any­where in the coun­try and con­tin­ues to be am­bi­tious in its ap­proach, pro­gram­ming and de­liv­ery.

This year the part­ner­ship with Jo­drell Bank, cel­e­brat­ing its 70th year, has been em­braced with the fes­ti­val theme of space and the town wel­comed Pro­fes­sors Brian Cox and Tim O’Brien in con­ver­sa­tion dis­cussing our cur­rent knowl­edge of the uni­verse. Teresa Anderson MBE, di­rec­tor of Jo­drell Bank said: “We are al­ways look­ing out across the uni­verse. It is some­times good to look closer to home and we have re­ally en­joyed in­ter­act­ing with artist Hon­dartza Fraga, whose com­mis­sion you can see at Barn­aby Fes­ti­val.”

The fes­ti­val launched eight art com­mis­sions across the town, in­clud­ing in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned artist Bed­wyr Wil­liams’ film Flex­ure, which has been com­mis­sioned by Barn­aby Fes­ti­val and funded by Arts Coun­cil Eng­land and the Henry Moore Foun­da­tion. The work will go on to be part of Wil­liams’ solo ex­hi­bi­tion at Bar­bican Curve Gallery in au­tumn.

The artist also gave a per­for­mance about a head­mas­ter who is in­creas­ingly trou­bled about a time cap­sule project he worked on years ago, and is now hav­ing night­mares about the cap­sule dig­ging it­self up and com­ing back to haunt him.

The art com­mis­sions are free to visit and con­tinue un­til Sun­day, June 26. There are more than 100 events on across the ten-day fes­ti­val in­clud­ing mu­sic, com­edy, the­atre, art, de­bate, and guest speak­ers. And of course the Barn­aby Pa­rade!

The events be­gan with Francesca Martinez, who sup­ported co­me­dian Frankie Boyle on a re­cent tour. Her Wob­bly Man­i­festo in St Michael’s Church en­ter­tained the crowds.

Karl Wal­lace, di­rec­tor of Barn­aby Fes­ti­val said: “What a truly as­tro­nom­i­cal start to Barn­aby Fes­ti­val. The peo­ple of Mac­cles­field should be very proud to have such a great event in their town – and one that wouldn’t be pos­si­ble with­out the com­mu­nity cre­at­ing it and sup­port­ing it. Come along and en­joy the at­mos­phere and do some­thing that you can’t nor­mally do in a corner of Mac­cles­field that you might never have been to.

“We even have our own beer Starry Mes­sen­ger, brewed by Mac­cles­field’s Red Wil­low with the pump clip de­signed by Bed­wyr Wil­liams.”

Tick­ets for all events, as well as the com­plete list­ings are avail­able at www.barn­abyfes­ti­val. org.uk. Tick­ets are also avail­able from the Vis­i­tors In­for­ma­tion Cen­tre at the town hall.

●» Pro­fes­sor Teresa Anderson, di­rec­tor of Jo­drell Bank Discovery Cen­tre, Lynne Jones, chair­man of Barn­aby Trustees, Karl Wal­lace, fes­ti­val di­rec­tor, and Nick Robin­son, BBC Radio 4 pre­sen­ter

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