Greenslate goes Glasto with festival

Pat Bray from Greenfest
Pat Bray from Greenfest

THE outdoor festival season is coming to Wigan as a community farm gears up for a day-long fund-raiser showcasing local bands.

Greenslate Community Farm in Billinge is putting on the Greenfest summer bash including an afternoon and evening of live music, craft stalls, high-quality local food and drink and lots of children’s activities.

The bands at Greenfest will perform in a marquee in Greenslate’s car park, with the bill being headlined by hard rockers Bigfoot.

A varied line-up also includes humorous ukulele-wielders Chonkinfeckle, ska group RedEyed Jedi, singer-songwriter AD Cooke.

The music has been organised by Greenslate volunteers Pat Bray, who also plays guitar in Hollow Dog, and Nick Ashcroft, who hope the outdoor setting for the event will prove the natural next step to the community farm’s previous indoor fund-raisers at St James’ Catholic Club.

Pat said: “We normally do an event every year but this time we decided to cast the net a bit wider and do something different.

“Local reaction to the idea of an outdoor festival has been almost universally positive and it means the fund-raiser is also more connected to the farm as we’re having it there.”

Greenslate Community Farm is also supported by Wigan Council’s Community Investment Fund, while the annual Diggers Festival has chipped in to help by lending the marquees.

As well as the music there are plenty of crafts and family activities to enjoy, while the real ale beer tent, barbecue and vegetarian food stalls will all showcase breweries and producers from Wigan and the surrounding area, with some of the menu even consisting of food grown at Greenslate Farm itself.

Festival co-ordinator Dawn Heywood said: “We want to bring the community together with local bands, local food and local beers.

“We’ve done fund-raising band nights in the autumn before but we wanted to do something in summer and run it as an annual event.

“It’s a varied line-up with quieter acts in the daytime and then ramping it up later on, and as well as the bands we’ve got open mic slots

Greenfest will take place at Greenslate Community Farm on Saturday August 1 from 11am until 11pm, with bands playing from 2pm.

Entry is by donations on the gate. To find out more, visit www.greenslatefarm.org.uk