English village goes Irish

English village goes Irish

The small, and very English, north Hertfordshire market town of Baldock will be hosting its seventh fleadh cheoil next Bank Holiday Monday, (2 May).

It is part of the Baldock Festival and has become ever more popular over the years. Organiser Brian Burke said: “It is amazing to think that we have been going now for so many years already.”

It recreates the atmosphere of a small town fleadh in Ireland such as those held in Listowel, County Kerry in the early ‘70s.

“These days the national fleadh attracts hundreds of thousands of people. We don’t quite get that many but it is ever more popular and the locals are now getting used to it and really enjoy the traditional music that goes on in the High Street for the afternoon.

“We are between Cambridge, Luton and London – three great Irish centres, so it’s easy for people to get to us and really enjoy the afternoon and even, dare I say it, have the odd drink,” said Brian.

“The Irish fheis starts with a gathering seisiun in the Rose and Crown on Sunday night from 8 o’clock (special accommodation rates for musicians) and the following evening’s sessions on Monday are at The White Lion, The Cock, and The Boot,” he said.

“There will be Irish dancing in all pubs from four. Musicians should gather in The Boot from 12 o’clock to receive drink and food vouchers.

“The event usually ends around nine, or with the last musician standing,” said Brian.

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