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Thursday, 20 November 2014

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Maryport Blues Festival brings back the main marquee

A star of this year’s Maryport Blues Festival will be a large marquee.

Public pressure has persuaded the festival committee to bring back a main marquee after a year’s absence.

Because of funding issues last year, the main stage last time was at the town’s Wave Centre.

Blues patrons, however, complained about the lack of atmosphere so this year there will be a marquee situated at the Maryport Rugby Club on Mealpot Road.

Maryport Festivals raised £20,000 this year by organising the Decades and Christmas Festivals in Workington and advising other festivals.

This money has been ploughed back into the blues event and has enabled the marquee to return.

Sue Sandham, festival spokeswoman, said: “The Mealpot Road site brings the event even closer to the town centre which will benefit everyone.”

She said comments and customer surveys after last year’s festival made it overwhelmingly clear that people wanted the marquee.

There is no camping at the Mealpot Road site but people will be able to pitch their tents at nearby Netherhall Rugby Club as they have in past years.

Other highlights this year will be the street entertainment.

Mrs Sandham said there would be entertainers all around towns throughout the July 26-28 weekend, including some contestants from Cumbria’s Got Talent.

The largest group to perform will be Committed 2 Rock, which is made up of two choirs in Keswick and Whitehaven. They will unite especially for the weekend to perform rock anthems.

Something else new for this year wil be an “alternative Sunday” of performances.

A stage behind the Captain Nelson and Maryport Dental Care will feature an eclectic mix of music including the La’al Big Band, Fireball, The 45s, Would City Walkers and No Idea.

This stage, on the Saturday, will be devoted to festival headliners The Quireboys and to the local winners of battle of the bands competitions that were held in March.

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