Thousands rock up to sell-out music festival at Thame Showground

Towersey Festival 2018 - the audience watch The Proclaimers. Picture: Phil Sofer.
Towersey Festival 2018 - the audience watch The Proclaimers. Picture: Phil Sofer.

Around 9,000 revellers enjoyed a sensational weekend of music as the 54th Towersey Festival rocked the Thame Showground.

The sell-out festival held over four days of the bank holiday weekend staged some great performances and standing ovations

The Shires at Towersey Festival. Picture: Dave Freak

The Shires at Towersey Festival. Picture: Dave Freak

Highlights over the holiday included appearances from Scottish brothers The Proclaimers and UK country stars The Shires, both making their debuts at the festival, and guitarist/ songwriter Richard Thompson returning with his Electric Trio.

Crowds were also wowed by five-piece Daphne’s Flight, who earned a standing ovation, and Cornish shanty singers Fisherman’s Friends, whose Jon Cleave also made an appearance for the festival’s Sunday morning newspaper review.

While away from the music, a switch to re-usable cups at bars was warmly welcomed by festival-goers, and was one of several changes introduced this year as part of a longstanding, and ongoing, commitment to reducing the environmental impact of the event.

The festival concluded with its traditional lantern parade, featuring inventive constructions designed and created by visitors, and a sing-a-long of The Beatles’ Hey Jude, led by folk rock band Blackbeard’s Tea Party.

Towersey Festival director Joe Heap said: “We’ve seen such an eclectic mix of artists this year, from the country pop of The Shires, to the UK’s number one brass band, Brighouse and Rastrick, to an acclaimed teaming of Peter Knight and John Spiers.

“We’ve also welcomed appearances by such established folk artists as the 82-year-old Roy Bailey, our Festival Patron who appeared at the very first Towersey back in 1965, to rising stars of the genre such as harpist Mera Royale, who won the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award this year, and Cohen Braithwaite-Kilcoyne.”

The 55th Towersey Festival will run from Friday, August 23 to Monday, August 26, 2019. Tier One tickets are on sale now, priced £119. The full 2019 line-up will be announced in the New Year. For details and tickets visit