Flock of sheep move out as countdown to festival at farm begins

9 June 2015

A flock of sheep will be moved to pastures new this week to make way for a music festival being held on their nine acre field this summer.

The Underneath the Stars Festival will take place on a field at Cannon Hall Farm in Cawthorne, near Barnsley on July 24th – 26th. The family-friendly event will showcase a mix of folk, swing, jazz, rock and roll, blues and world music along with arts and cultural activities.

Health and safety regulations require that livestock is moved off the field six weeks prior to the event in order the rest and prepare the ground for public use.

But the sheep won’t be going far. They’ll graze in neighbouring fields at the popular visitor attraction, which is also a working farm with a farm shop selling some of its own produce.

Cannon Hall Farm owner Robert Nicholson said: “We’re moving the sheep off this field in preparation for the biggest event we are hosting at Cannon Hall Farm this summer.

“Underneath the Stars is set to attract more than 10,000 people here over the three-days of the festival, and the farm will be open as usual during the weekend too, so we hope festival-goers may also pop in and see some of our sheep, llamas, pigs and so on.”

Underneath the Stars is being organised by the family of Barnsley’s most famous singer-songwriter Kate Rusby in close collaboration with Robert and his family.

This is the second year the event has been organised and great care is taken to disrupt farm life as little as possible. For example, there is plenty of excellent live music to be heard, but no loud fireworks and noisy children’s rides. Family fun is provided through a selection of vintage fairground rides, storytelling, music and dance workshops and craft activities, plus a giant planetarium and artisan food and drink from Yorkshire-based suppliers.

Robert said: “We work very closely with the Rusbys to help them stage their festival and the sheep don’t mind lending their field for such a well-planned family-friendly event.”

Headliners on this year’s Underneath the Stars line-up include Kate Rusby herself; US song-writing legend Mary Chapin Carpenter and Eddi Reader, formerly of Fairground Attraction; and Galleon Blast featuring BBC radio personality Mark Radcliffe. Others include Philip Selway, of Radiohead; Molotov Jukebox fronted by Natalia Tena of Harry Potter and Game of Thrones fame; and Sheffield-based legendary guitar maestro Martin Simpson, plus many more.

Festival director Emma Holling, Kate Rusby’s sister, said: “We really appreciate the Nicholson’s hosting our festival at Cannon Hall Farm. It is the perfect picturesque setting for Underneath the Stars, surrounded by South Yorkshire’s beautiful rolling hills.

“One of our aims in organising the festival has been introduce more people from across the UK to our beautiful part of the country and attract world-renowned performers to the heart of Yorkshire.”

Festival regulations require livestock to move off a farm site six weeks before an event to allow the site to be settled and prepared, plus clear of any recent animal droppings.

Underneath the Stars weekend tickets, with or without camping, and day tickets, without camping, are on sale via www.underthestarsfest.co.uk

Cannon Hall Farm is home to rare breeds of cows, pigs, donkeys, ponies and sheep as well llamas, alpacas and even reindeer. Daily activities include sheep and ferret racing, milking demonstrations and animal petting. There is an outdoor adventure playground and a new indoor play zone, plus a farm shop where the farm’s own home produced beef, pork and lamb can be purchased.

Below, listen to Emma Holling, festival organiser of Underneath the Stars, talk on BBC Radio Sheffield.

Notes to editor

Attached photograph shows last year’s Underneath the Stars at Cannon Hall Farm.

For media enquiries about the festival, please contact 01226 767872 or press@underthestarsfest.co.uk and visit www.underthestarsfest.co.uk

For more information about Cannon Hall Farm call 01226 790427 or visit www.cannonhallfarm.co.uk

Barnsley-born Kate Rusby’s 22-year career includes several studio albums and thousands of live performances all over the world. She has won various awards including several BBC Radio Two Folk Awards and in 2014 her contribution to the UK music industry was recognised with a Gold Award from BASCA (British Association of Songwriters, Composers and Authors). She was nominated for the Mercury prize for her album Sleepless in 1999. She was also made an Official Patron of Yorkshire in 2008 in recognition of her passion for her home county and the way she promotes Yorkshire wherever she goes on tour. Yorkshire and her family roots are also an important influence on her music and her writing. Kate has honorary doctorates from Huddersfield and Sheffield Hallamshire Universities.

Underneath the Stars’ official charity partner is Yorkshire Cancer Research, the largest independent regional cancer charity in England. It supports vital projects across Yorkshire helping people avoid, survive and cope with cancer.

Additional media contact: Steph Pollard on 01226 766900 or 0776 196 4492 or at steph@capitalbmedia.co.uk

This press release was prepared by Capital B Media, a public relations and media training agency based in Sheffield, South Yorkshire. For more details about our PR services, please visit www.capitalbmedia.co.uk

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