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.

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Wigan Diggers’ Festival 2017 – Announcements

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The 7th Wigan Diggers’ Festival will take place on Saturday 9th September 2017

Are you a songwriter or would you like to perform at this year’s event? If so, then this is for you!

If you are a solo entertainer, duo, group or band and would like to peform at this year’s Festival, then here is the application-for-playing-at-wigan-diggers-festival-2017 form you need to fill in and return to us before 31st March 2017. Successful applicants will be notified will be notified by 30th April.

Please email the application with any attachments to diggersstageentertainment@gmail.com

WIGAN DIGGERS’ FESTIVAL SONGWRITING COMPETITION

orwell-wigan-pier-newest

The Wigan Diggers’ Festival exists to promote the ideas of Wigan born Gerrard Winstanley, the inspirational leader of the 17th century Diggers’ Movement. Winstanley believed that “The Earth was a Common Treasury For All” and that all its inhabitants should benefit from the riches that it has to offer, rather than being the preserve of a privileged few.

2017 sees the 80th Anniversary of the publication of ‘The Road to Wigan Pier’ in which George Orwell highlighted the extent to which, almost 3 centuries on from Winstanley, the living conditions of the working class inhabitants of Wigan showed that, whatever prosperity abounded in Britain, that it was hardly being shared equally amongst its citizens.

To celebrate the publication of the book and the impact that it had, the Wigan Diggers’ Festival Committee are inviting submissions of songs inspired by Orwell’s groundbreaking work.

THE PRIZE

£250 FOR THE WRITER(S) OF THE WINNING SONG
AN INVITATION TO PERFORM THE SONG AT THE WIGAN DIGGERS’ FESTIVAL 2017

THE RULES:

1: THE SONG MUST BE AN ORIGINAL PIECE OF WORK
2: THE SONG SHOULD BE SUBMITTED TO THE COMMITTEE ON OR BEFORE THE 8TH MARCH 2017.
3: THE SUBMISSION CAN BE IN ANY PERFORMANCE FORMAT – AN AUDIO FILE OR A VIDEO OF THE SONG BEING PERFORMED. IT IS PERMITTED TO SUBMIT A LINK TO A SOCIAL MEDIA SITE SHOWING THE PERFORMANCE OF THE SONG – FOR EXAMPLE A LINK TO A YOUTUBE UPLOAD
4: ENTRIES SHOULD BE SUBMITTED TO diggerssongwritingcompetition@gmail.com
5: ENTRIES SHOULD INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING:
THE NAME(S) OF THE SONGWRITER(S)
A COPY OF THE LYRICS OF THE SONG
AN ATTACHMENT OR LINK TO A PERFORMANCE OF THE SONG

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE RECORDING QUALITY OF THE SONG IS NOT BEING JUDGED – IT IS THE MUSICAL AND LYRICAL CONTENT OF THE SONG THAT IS IMPORTANT. THE COMMITTEE INCLUDES A NUMBER OF WRITERS AND PERFORMERS AND THEY WILL BE ABLE TO DISTINGUISH BETWEEN THE SONG AND THE METHOD OF PRESENTATION.
6: THE WINNER WILL BE ANNOUNCED BY THE END OF MAY
7: THE COMMITTEE IS MADE UP OF PEOPLE WHO EACH HAVE A SINGLE VOTE – NO PERSON WILL HAVE MORE INFLUENCE THAN ANY OTHER PERSON
8: THE DECISION OF THE COMMITTEE IS FINAL AND NO CORRESPONDENCE WILL BE ENTERED INTO REGARDING THE SONGS SUBMITTED.
9: WRITERS OF ALL SONGS SUBMITTED (INCLUDING THE WINNER, WILL RETAIN ALL RIGHTS TO THEIR OWN SONG.

GOOD LUCK

6th Wigan Diggers’ Festival – A resounding success!

Quite definitely our biggest and best so far, this year’s Wigan Diggers’ Festival was a resounding success. Here are some photos of the day’s proceeding (courtesy of Al Balmer) which saw our best ever line up of live entertainment, five excellent educational talks, two puppet shows, over 60 stalls and a terrific speech from this year’s Gerrard Winstanley Spade Award recipient, veteran Socialist fim director Ken Loach (see below). The weather, food and beer were pretty good too.

Lots more photos on our Facebook Page.

Video of Ken Loach speaking at the Festival. What a brilliant speech.

More photos and video clips to follow.

 

6th Wigan Diggers’ Festival – Saturday 10th September 2016 – Final Programme Announced

WIGAN DIGGERS BOOKLET 1

WDF6Leaflet2

Come & enjoy our best ever line up of live entertainment.

More educational talks – lots of new stalls – more stuff for the kids – and a presentation to Ken Loach

Here are the final details of the programme for this year’s Wigan Diggers’ Festival, which coincides with the 340th Anniversary of the death of Gerrard Winstanley, the Wigan born leader of 17th century radical movement known as “The Diggers“, who were referred to by the late Tony Benn, as the “first true socialists“.

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WDF6MainStage

DorothyFryman

ParishChurch

GWGardens

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This year’s main festival sponsors are HeinzBranchStampA big thanks to them, plus to all our many other trades union branch and regional sponsors, stall holders, artists, speakers and festival volunteers for making our annual FREE to the public event to celebrate Gerrard Winstanley & The Diggers possible.

Facebook Event Page:

https://www.facebook.com/events/1027519810669157/

PLEASE SHARE & INVITE YOUR FRIENDS

THIS YEAR’S GERRARD WINSTANLEY SPADE AWARD WINNER

is film director, campaigner and lifelong socialist KEN LOACH

Loach   GedWinstanleysSpadeSmall   IMG_1844

Ken will receive his “outstanding contribution to the Diggers’ cause” award at around 1.00pm from previous winners Maxine Peake (2014) & Jimmy McGovern (2015) on behalf of the Festival Committee.

TonyBennTolpuddle  Tony Benn was the first recipient of the award in 2013.

6th Wigan Diggers’ Festival – More about this year’s performers.

WDF6ArtistBios

Diggers’ Festival – Site Map & Stall Location, etc

WDF6 Site Map

FESTIVAL SITE LOCATION IN WIGAN TOWN CENTRE

Wigan Diggers' Festival Site Map

The Diggers’ Festival site (A) is less than 5 minutes walk from Wigan Bus Station (between Market Street & Hallgate) and both of the town’s railway stations. Turn left out of Wallgate station, right out of Wigan North Western.

The best place to park your car (if you’re coming by car) is in the multi-storey car park on Wallgate immediately adjacent (left hand side looking from front) to Wigan North Western railway station. It’s only £3 all day and again less than 5 minutes walk away from our main festival site.

 

WIGAN DIGGERS BOOKLET 1THIS YEAR SEES A NEW FESTIVAL BROCHURE with A MESSAGE OF SUPPORT from LABOUR PARTY LEADER JEREMY CORBYN, plus local MP Lisa Nandy.

It’s packed with background info about The Diggers, Levellers and OUR LOCAL HERO Gerrard Winstanley, also about how to get involved.

Here are a few extracts. You can view the entire brochure at: New – 6th Wigan Diggers’ Festival Commemorative Brochure

A MESSAGE OF SUPPORT from JEREMY CORBYN & WELCOME……….

WIGAN DIGGERS BOOKLET 2

WIGAN DIGGERS BOOKLET 5

WIGAN DIGGERS BOOKLET 6

WIGAN DIGGERS BOOKLET 7

WIGAN DIGGERS BOOKLET 8

WIGAN DIGGERS BOOKLET 12

WATCH THIS SPACE FOR FURTHER UPDATES

 

6th Wigan Diggers’ Festival – Saturday 10th September 2016 – IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Scene from stage during Merry Hell's performance at last year's Diggers' Festival.
Scene from the stage during Merry Hell’s performance at the 2014 Diggers’ Festival.

Calling all politically progressive bands and performers! Have you got what it takes to perform at this year’s Digger’s Festival?

If you think you have, then our music & entertainment committee would like to hear from you. Just download the application form, fill it in, and e-mail it back to us via: diggersstageentertainment@gmail.com

Closing date: 1st April 2016

Application for playing at Wigan Diggers Festival 2016

Want to put on a stall at this year’s Festival? Then here’s the 2016 Stallholders’ Application Form

We are now taking stall applications for the Wigan Diggers’ Festival 2016. The number of pitches available is limited, so please please send your completed application form, and a cheque for the appropriate amount, as early as possible to avoid disappointment. All cheques payable to Wigan Diggers’ Festival.

You will hear if your application was successful by no later than 31st July

Diggers-Stall-Application-2016

Want to Volunteer to help out before, and/or on the day?

Every year we need rafts of volunteers to help out with a variety jobs and roles, both before, and on the day of the festival itself, and this year will obviously be no exception. If you can help out any time during FRIDAY 9th SEPTEMBER 2016 when we will be erecting our Marquees, Beer Tent, and preparing the entire festival site, and/or alternatively are prepared to help out for AT LEAST FOUR HOURS on the day of the festival on SATURDAY 10th SEPTEMBER 2016 as a festival steward, or in helping to staff our stall, running errands, as a first aider, or working behind the bar, then you should message us via our Facebook page Wigan Diggers’ Festival stating in what capacity you’d like to help, and on what days and times, and we’ll get back to you.

If you’d like to help out a lot more than that and become a member of our growing, and welcoming Wigan Diggers’ Festival Committee then why not come and join us every 3rd Monday of the month, in the private meeting room of The Anvil pub, Dorning Street, Wigan. 7.30pm k.o.

The 5th Wigan Diggers’ Festival will take place on Saturday 12th September 2015

This year’s first leaflet artwork. More information, including details of all the performers to follow:

5th Wigan Diggers' Festival Leaflet Artwork

5th Wigan Diggers' Festival - Leaflet Artwork Reverse

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 the linked file, complete as appropriate, and return to the address provided.

Diggers-Stall-Application