In 1991 the PTA started the Folk Festival as a fund raiser in the village hall. Since then, the Festival has grown, but still remains true to its roots. It is organised and run by a group of volunteers dedicated to bringing good music into Priddy. It is a fundraising event for charity with the stated aims of promoting music and arts and improving the environs of Priddy. But it still is a major contributor to the local school respecting its PTA origins. The Festival is now based on and around the historic green in Priddy – the most wonderful setting for a weekend of music.
The festival funds have supported all manner of projects and activities in the village over the years. You will see plaques with our name on in many different places. The following list gives an idea of what we do regularly:
- The Local History Club (support for speakers and exhibitions)
- Dance Fusion Club (paying for dancing lessons, occasionally leading to dance exhibitions at the festival!)
- Monday Club (paying for speakers for some of the more experience rich members of our community)
- Priddy Toddlers and Pre School (equipment purchases)
- St Laurence Church (help with maintenance costs)
- The Village Green (paid to solve a long standing drainage problem)
- Art Exhibitions (we have supported two exhibitions for local professional and amateur artists)
- Music Concerts (we have put on various village hall concerts that would otherwise have been uneconomic)
- Music Tuition (paying for music tuition in our local primary school)
- Archaeology (supporting the costs of local archaeological digs)
Having had to cancel the 2001 Festival due to Foot and Mouth, we celebrated our 21st Birthday and our 21st festival together in 2012 with some new ideas working with the local Wells Blue School, and Halsway Manor focused on promoting young musicians in the folk tradition. This was a great success and so popular that we have carried it on in the free concert on Saturday mornings.
We are known for our relaxed, friendly atmosphere, so to sit out in the open or under canvas listening to music, chatting with friends, or having a drink with everyone else around you is pretty much normal for us.
Listen to some coverage of the 2013 festival (BBC Somerset):