ORGANISERS of the annual Ribchester Music Festival have announced that this year’s event will be its last.

At the launch event of this year’s 23rd festival at St Wilfrid’s Church in the village, Chairman Tim Rainford said that financial pressures meant that the directors were unwilling to commit to a 2016 event.


It will be staged from Monday, June 22, to Sunday, June 28, and will feature 16 events in eight different locations.

Artists including Lithuanian pianist Ugnius Pauliukonis will take to the stage during the week as well as The Swing Commanders and The A4 Brass Quartet.

Venues such as The Glass House at Stydd Gardens and the Potters Barn Cafe will host sets for the first time.

Mr Rainford said: “As a non-profit charitable organisation we have relied on corporate and local government sponsorship, ticket sales, and donations from Friends of the Festival for the festival to survive.

“As both sponsorships and ticket sales have declined in recent years, and the costs of staging the festival have increased in spite of using talented student performers from the Royal Academy of Music in London and the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, it means that, after this year, the festival will not be financially viable.

“While we are saddened by this decision, and it will be a disappointment to many of our loyal supporters, we feel we want to go out on a high and make this as memorable a festival as any that we have had in the previous 22 years, so we have put together an exciting array of events, with more music, more venues and more choice than ever before.”

Liz Wilkins, who lives in the village and had a hand in creating Ribchester’s war memorial, said: “It brings in a lot of people to the village and it would be a huge lose to Ribchester if it was to stop after this year.

“It helps a lot of the local businesses as well and is a boost to everyone.

“The events that I have been to over the years have been fantastic and I have loved every minute.”