Hartlepool Folk Festival is a bit different this year – instead of venue-based concerts and events, there is a whole day of free, family-friendly activity taking place at the Town Square (better known as the Squircle) on the Hartlepool Headland. Whether you’re a complete newcomer to folk or you love a jig and a shanty, there will be so much to do!

Get stuck in!

Folk is all about taking part, and you’ll be spoilt for choice. Circus skills workshops, ukulele and percussion workshops, Drag Storytime, a shanty singalong, an Appalachian dance lesson, crafting your own sea creatures and even making adorable bears – there’s lots to keep you busy!

Experience gorgeous music

If you’ve never really heard much folk music, you’re in luck – we have some fantastic singers and musicians to keep you entertained. Melrose Quartet sing songs in lush four-part harmony, accompanied by traditional instruments. The Wilsons are a band of brothers from Billingham, whose powerful voices are perfectly suited to their songs about North East history and heritage. And Jim Boyle & Dave Gray from Newcastle play blistering tunes on button accordion and fiddle that will have you up dancing in no time!

Meet a Sea Giant!

Autin Dance Theatre present two performances of their beautiful show, Out of the Deep Blue, featuring Eko the Sea Giant: a four-metre-tall puppet operated by five world-class puppeteers and contemporary dancers. There will be a promenade, where you can meet and interact with Eko, and a physical theatre piece which will transport you to another world. Designed with family audiences in mind, you’ll love this magical story about the power of connection between an ancient sea creature and a young human girl. At the end of the day you can join in the procession to return Eko to the sea – accompanied by music and FIRE.

If you’ll be there (and why wouldn’t you be!) share your images and videos of the day on social media tagging @enjoyteesvalley #EnjoyTeesValley.

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