Wigan Today Say Yes! And so do we!

Saturday saw another hugely successful Diggers’ Festival in the face of some inclement weather, with thousands attending and and all the feedback indicating a great time was had by all.

Wigan Today reports (see full article at http://www.wigantoday.net/news/diggers-festival-of-art-and-politics-success-1-8747316)

“Festival-goers enjoyed a packed programme of music and politics to hail the Diggers movement, based on Winstanley’s belief that “the Earth was made a common treasury for all”. Dozens of stalls brought together political parties, radical and left-wing movements, environmental and green organisations, unions and campaigns. Popular Wigan folk-rockers Merry Hell headlined the bill of entertainment on the main stage, with other groups performing including John the Baptist and the Second Coming, the Brandon Lee Webb Band and folk act Harp and a Monkey.”

Here are some photos courtesy of Al Balmer of the day’s memorable, and exceedingly enjoyable proceedings.

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7th Wigan Diggers’ Festival – Programme

img_8839The weather forecast isn’t the best we might have hoped for, but come rain or shine, one thing we can say for sure is we’ve another bumper day’s programme of ‘stuff’ planned for this year’s seventh annual free festival.

ENTERTAINMENT FOR CHILDREN

Entertainment for children will be provided throughout the day by STEAM COMMUNITY GROUP in The Wiend/Gerrard Winstanley Gardens area. See our various facebook pages for further info, including details of the themed workshops in our activities tent.

11.00am BADGE MAKING WORKSHOP
12.00noon WEARABLE ART WORKSHOP
1.00pm ELECTRO BUGS WORKSHOP
1.00pm DRUMMING WORKSHOP
2.00pm ROCK A PET WORKSHOP
3.00pm DIGITAL MUSIC MAKING WORKSHOP

NEW THIS YEAR: Check out our Diggers’ Festival Top O’Millgate/Grand Arcade Stage from 10.30am onwards which will combine a traditional Speaker’s Corner style platform for trades union, environmental, social justice and other campaign speakers from across the North West to put their case to the Wigan public; with performance art, and live music, poetry and other entertainment provided by Charlotte Peters Rock, Tony Harper and guests.

Speakers from WASPI; Re-Open Chorley A+E; Fast Food Rights Campaign, People’s Assembly; Bolton & Wigan Diggers; Greater Manchester CND, Frack Free Wigan, Leigh & Makerfield;  Cuba Solidarity, Frack Free Lancs; International Brigade Commemoration and more.

11.30am  – 11.45am – Historic Digging Re-enactment in Gerrard Winstanley Gardens  

Actor Brendan Delaney will once again play the role of Gerrard Winstanley in our symbolic re-enactment of the digging at St. George’s Hill near Weybridge in Surrey in 1649, from which THE DIGGERS gained their name. Accompanied by the Bolton Clarion Choir.

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11.45am  – 12.00noon

Official Opening of the Festival – Main Stage, Believe Square

This year’s festival will be opened by Martin McMulkin, Chair of Unite the Union, North West Regional Committee, this year’s main festival sponsor.   

12.00noon12.40pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

BRANDON LEE WEBB BAND

12.40pm – 1.00pm – Dorothy Fryman Song & Story Stage, Gerrard Winstanley Gardens

MONOLOGUE JOHN BARTLEY – EVA CURLESS – GEORGE MELLING

1.00pm – 1.10pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

FESTIVAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

1.10pm – 1.50pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

HARP & A MONKEY

1.30pm – 2.30pm – Wigan Parish Church (around 400 yards from Main Festival site)

A talk by Dr. David Taylor (Historian and Writer from Cobham, Surrey – Gerrard Winstanley’s other home) on GERRARD WINSTANLEY: THE BIBLE & GOD

1.50pm – 2.10pm – Dorothy Fryman Song & Story Stage, Gerrard Winstanley Gardens

JOE ASTLEY

2.10pm – 2.50pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

WONDERLAND TRIP

2.30pm – 3.30pm – The Wiend Bar, The Wiend

Short play “THE PUTNEY PRINCIPLE” by The Soothside Radicles, followed by a discussion with the cast on the issues raised in the play about The Levellers and the 1647 Putney Debates.

2.50pm – 3.15pm – Dorothy Fryman Song & Story Stage, Gerrard Winstanley Gardens

LAWRENCE HOY

3.15pm – 3.45pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

PAULINE BLACKBURN

3.30pm – 4.30pm – The Wiend Bar, The Wiend

Short play “UNFINISHED BUSINESS” by The Soothside Radicles, followed by a discussion with the cast on the issues raised in the play about The Chartists’ movement, which existed from 1838 to 1857 and campaigned for the six basic reforms of ‘The People’s Charter’.

3.45pm – 4.10pm – Dorothy Fryman Song & Story Stage, Gerrard Winstanley Gardens

PATCHWORK RATTLEBAG

4.10pm – 4.25pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

MORE THAN WORDS

4.25pm – 5.00pm – Dorothy Fryman Song & Story Stage, Gerrard Winstanley Gardens

BARD COMPANY

5.00pm – 5.40pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

JOHN THE BAPTIST & THE SECOND COMING

5.40pm – 6.05pm – Dorothy Fryman Song & Story Stage, Gerrard Winstanley Gardens

STEPHEN SMITH

6.05pm – 6.45pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

MATHER ROBINSON BAND

6.45pm – 7.10pm – Dorothy Fryman Song & Story Stage, Gerrard Winstanley Gardens

DARREN POYZER

7.10pm – 7.50pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

VISION THING

7.50pm – 8.20pm – Dorothy Fryman Song & Story Stage, Gerrard Winstanley Gardens

GEORGE BOROWSKI

8.20pm – 8.30pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

FESTIVAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

8.30pm – 9.30pm – Main Stage, Believe Square

MERRY HELL

9.30pm – FESTIVAL ENDS

 

See you there.

ADDENDUM

Come to Wigan Diggers’ Festival – It’s Brilliant!

Third of the three videos commissioned by the Wigan Diggers’ Festival Committee, to help publicise this year’s 7th free festival on Saturday 9th September. Produced for us by First Take in Liverpool, we think it sums up the spirit of the event and what you can look forward to on the day. We hope you like it.

A big thanks to Jane Farley and her team for their sterling work.

Latest Diggers’ Festival Festival Flyer

Front of the latest flyer for the 7th Annual Wigan Diggers’ Festival on Saturday 9th September in The Wiend, Wigan. This year’s main sponsor is Unite the Union North West Region. Please share and invite your family, friends, neighbours and work colleagues. It’s always a reet good do.

Cheers.

 
WDF72ndFlyer1

An Invitation to the 7th Wigan Diggers’ Festival – Saturday 9th September 2017

Here’s the second of the three videos commissioned by the Wigan Diggers’ Festival Committee, produced for us by First Take in Liverpool. This one features many familiar faces from our annual event, as well as the excellent new song “Come on England” composed by Festival Committee member Bob Kettle, performed by local band and former festival headliners Merry Hell. Hope to see lots of you there again this year.

Invitation to Wigan Diggers’ Bolton Bash 2017

Wigan Diggers’ Festival Committee would like to invite you to this year’s Bolton ‘Warm Up’ Bash at the Socialist Club, Wood Street, Bolton on Saturday 22nd July.

The event will take place between 3.00pm and 10.30pm.

We have a great bill of guest performers including: The Earthquakers, Road to Poppyville, James Holt, Gary O’Gorman, Charlotte Mary, Gareth Evans, Tony Harper, Ian Whiteley, Gordon Zola, Daniel Dwyran, Stephen Gall, Andy N, Potting Shed Pete, John Wilmington and our regular Master of Ceremonies Jeffarama.

Hopefully see of you there.
BoltonBash2017

Booking a Stall at this year’s Wigan Diggers’ Festival

If you would like to book a stall for your organisation, community group, co-operative or small business at this year’s festival then please download Wigan Diggers’ Festival 2017 – Stall Application Form, complete as appropriate and return, along with your payment to the address provided.

Prospective stallholders are advised to book their pitch, tables, gazebos, chairs, etc, as soon as possible to avoid missing out, as the demand for space is growing year on year.

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Scene from the 2014 Diggers' Festival


We have space for around 50 stalls at our festival. These include for hot food, books, arts and craft products, credit union, campaign and other community groups, trades unions and political organisations.