Golden year for Gathering

Morpeth Gathering 2016
Picture by Jane Coltman
Morpeth Gathering 2016 Picture by Jane Coltman

A special celebration will take place this spring for the 50th Morpeth Northumbrian Gathering.

From April 21 to 23, the town will be hosting the ‘Golden’ Gathering.

Organisers hope to welcome back some old friends, but will also look to the future with events showcasing younger performers, street entertainment and workshops to get the general public joining in.

The aim across the weekend is to present 50 singers, 50 pipers, 50 writers, 50 dancers, 50 window displays, and so on.

Organisers are urging shops to display the red and gold colours of the county flag, or alternatively, the black and white of the Northumberland tartan.

A number of family art projects are being arranged, along with newly commissioned music, including a tune to commemorate Gannie’s Gansey, a venerable jumper worn by musician David Oliver at one of the very first Gatherings, and also by his son Joey at the 40th festival.

The programme is still being finalised, but the Northumbrian expression “Gowld a gowpens”, literally “gold coins in double handfuls”, conjuring up a sense of overflowing riches, will be reflected in the theme of the full three-day extravaganza across the town.

Musical headliners include new Northumbrian super-group Alistair Anderson and Northlands, leading traditional band 422 playing at the Saturday night barn dance, the wonderful singer Carolyn Robson, and the Bottle Bank Band, including ace fiddler Stewart Hardy, a favourite with Morpeth audiences, who will also run some music workshops in the run up to the Gathering.

See northumbriana.org.uk