Richmond MayFest to return for a second year after success in 2022

Morris dancers at Richmond Castle during Richmond MayFest 2022.

Richmond MayFest will return for a second year after a successful inaugural event in 20222.

The festival will be held over the May Bank Holiday weekend.

Organisers say MayFest offers a three-day “feast of historical and traditional entertainments – all in the perfect setting of Richmond’s historic town centre”.

Many of the events are free and there is discounted entry for local people to all the ticketed events.

Marcia McLuckie, spokesperson for the event, said; “Richmond MayFest is a real community event, bringing together musicians, dancers and storytellers from the local community alongside guest performers from further afield.

“So, the Richmond on Swale Morris Men have moved their annual Day of Dance to coincide with MayFest, and are inviting dance sides from far and wide to come and dance in Richmond on the Sunday.

“And the Richmondshire Choral Society are holding their Spring concert on the Saturday in St Mary’s. Plus, the Black Lion Folk Club are leading a folk session and that’s just a sample.”

The MayFest Tavern will open in Richmond Castle from 11am-4pm each day, with ales from Richmond Brewing Company and treats from Granny’s Kitchen.

Local medieval minstrels Trouvere will be based at the castle, with guest appearances from other bands including Tritor and Bisarr.

There is maypole dancing at the castle too on Saturday and Sunday, and then on the Monday local storytellers will be telling tales in the keep.

Local residents (DL9, DL10 and DL11) get free entry to the castle all weekend – just bring a proof of address.

As well as at the castle, there are more free entertainments in the market place and at the town hall.

On Saturday the focus is music, on Sunday it’s the day of dance, and Monday is the day for storytelling – plus there are crafty activities for families on offer.

Marcia added: “Last year, we had a wonderful musical walk from The Station to Easby, and that’s definitely happening again.

“Join folky supremos The Ran Tanners at 4pm on Saturday and walk along the Swale to St Agatha’s for tea and cake, before the concert with Janice Burns and Jon Doran at 5pm.

“These two are outstanding young folk musicians – expect sparkling guitar and mandolin and gorgeous vocal harmonies.”

The MayFest ceilidh returns on Sunday evening – but this year it is at Richmond School.

Last year tickets sold out so the bigger venue offers room for more dancers and more dancing!

On Monday there’s another musical procession around Richmond Market Place and down to the Methodist Church for the final (free) event, tales with Yorkshire storyteller Ursula Holden Gill.

More information and tickets for concerts and ceilidh on the website www.richmondmayfest.org or email richmondmayfest@gmail.com