Recently celebrating its 40-year history the Cambridge Folk Festival always hosts a superb line-up of folk music. With groups including Fairport Convention, Bellowhead and the Levellers having joined the likes of Eliza Carthy, Joan Baez and Frank Turner, the festival offers a high calibre of artists. The festival has grown since its humble origins of 1965, where less than 1,500 fans attended the event headlined by a young Paul Simon. It is now a firm staple on the festival calendar, while keeping an intimate appeal with crowds of around 14,000. Many performers will play two sets during the weekend.
It is easy to reach Cambridge from London and all other big cities. The nearest major international airport is London Stansted. From Stansted, you are only 30 miles away, with train and coaches available. Tickets cost £167 for the whole weekend, with day tickets at £27.50 Thursday, £59.50 Friday, £70 Saturday and £70 Sunday. Discounts are available for those under 18, however must be accompanied by a responsible adult. Check nearer the date for opening and stage times, anticipating music to start late morning or early afternoon until around 11pm.
The festival often sells out so book in advance, tickets are limited to 10 per person. It is a child friendly event, those under 5 go free and make use of discounts in other age brackets. Arrive early and watch as much live music as you can, check for line-up announcements throughout the year. There are several stages, so ensure you also see the more low-key performances in the club tent or Floor Stage as well as the larger arena. If you miss someone on the main stage keep an eye out for a 2nd set elsewhere. If you’re a young up and coming folk star, workshops and jam sessions offer the chance to join in.
If you are visiting the Cambridge Folk Festival, choose from a selection of houses, apartments, Bed & Breakfasts, spare rooms, boats and other private rentals close to Cherry Hinton Hall in the south of Cambridge. Wherever you stay you will be in easy reach of the festival.
The prestigious Cambridge University is open to the public for guided tours. As well as the historic buildings, there’s antiques from ancient Greece at the Fitzwilliam Museum. If you wish to relax take a scenic punting tour of the city along the River Cam, or just walk along the water edge.
Find out more about the Cambridge Folk Festival, such as news and ticket information, line-up announcements, frequently asked questions, photo galleries, the City Roots Festival, the 1965 club and for links to other Cambridge music venues see the official website.
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