The countdown to #LeighFolk18 is underway and behind the scenes the Leigh Folk Festival team are hard at work to make sure we deliver another year of great music, poetry, dance and everything in between.
As we gear up for this years festival, we caught up with Neil Harding, Chairman of the Leigh Folk Festival committee, to uncover a little more about his role and what he’s most looking forward to during this year’s festival.
At 65, our Chair currently runs an events company, a community café and a ‘profit sharing mobile bar’ company. President of Southend Rugby Football Club and a proud Honoury Life Member of both Hadleigh & Thundersley Cricket Club, he’s also working on a number of community events within the local boroughs of Castle Point, Rochford and Southend -on-Sea. We’re exhausted just reading about it!
So, why not put the kettle on and meet the team as we quiz Neil on all things Leigh Folk ahead of this years festival!
What is your role in the Leigh Folk Festival team?
How and why did you get involved with the festival?
Former Chairman and folk festival stalwart Tony Prior asked me to become involved by running a profit sharing bar with the charity.
What do you feel you gain from the experience?
The challenge of the fund raising aspects of my job; you receive a real buzz when successfully raising much needed monies from the private, charity or local government sectors.
What are you most looking forward to during the weekend?
Listening to the sounds of the eclectic mix of music and enjoying the colourful site of the main parade through Leigh Old Town on the Sunday of the festival.
What’s your favourite bevvy to sink into over the weekend?
Any real ale brewed by our wonderful local breweries Billericay, Georges, Leigh-on-Sea and Keppels.
What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of being involved with the festival?
A huge logistical challenge shared with the entire committee to deliver a safe and successful festival over the period of the weekend and its multi venues.
What makes it all worthwhile?
To witness the crowds both young and old enjoying the experience.
What do you think has been the key to Leigh Folk Festival’s success over the years?
The hard work of a very good group of volunteers whom organise the festival to ensure it remains ‘free’ to the community at large!
Register to volunteer for #LeighFolk18 by completing our form here. Don’t forget, you can now purchase tickets for our evening events here.