Local & Live safe for another year

THE FUTURE of Local & Live, the town’s biggest annual event, has been secured for another year.

Last year, the future of the four-day music festival was left in doubt owing to a deficit of £20,000. That’s when Maxipay Accounting Services stepped in as the headline sponsor. Now the local accountancy firm has reaffirmed its support for the festival as this year’s sponsor, too.

The annual music festival, which this year is expected to showcase around 60 local artists on the main stage in Calverley Grounds, as well as at The Forum and The Sussex Arms, costs almost £60,000 to stage.

“We are very pleased to welcome Maxipay Accounting Services back as headline sponsors for a second year,” said festival founder and organiser Paul Dunton.

“Their involvement last year was greatly appreciated, and the relationship has been an invaluable contribution to the festival.”

Local music impresario Mr Dunton founded Local & Live in 2006, as part of the town’s 400th anniversary celebrations. It was first held in the bandstand on The Pantiles, then relocated to Calverley Grounds in 2014 when it outgrew The Pantiles as a venue.

The festival platforms local artists performing their own music, giving audiences a chance to experience local talent, while the performers have the opportunity to play in front of substantial crowds.

Despite the emphasis on ‘local’, the festival has attracted its share of high-profile praise and support. The Who’s Roger Daltrey said: “Local & Live is dedicated to showcasing and developing genuine music talent of all ages and styles. Long may that continue!”

Singer-songwriter Joan Armatrading has also shown her support for the festival: “Paul Dunton has done so much for independent artists. Local & Live is just brilliant.”

“It’s been so rewarding to see Local & Live become an established fixture on the annual calendar. Every year we see more and more people returning to the event and more artists wanting to appear on the bill.”

In addition to its importance for music, the event also offers a business boost to the town, with festival-goers arriving from a much wider area.

The festival’s ‘food village’ is made up of exclusively local traders.

Local & Live will be held on August 25-28 at Calverley Grounds, The Forum and The Sussex Arms.

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