Monday, March 23, 2020


The 100th music festival - due to be held in Brigg - has been cancelled in view of the Coronavirus alert.
This decision was taken "with great sadness" by the North Lincolnshire Music & Drama Festival organisers.

The 100th event was to have started today (March 23) and Brigg Blog had planned to congratulate the society on reaching this milestone.
A special nostalgia night had been arranged on Tuesday, March 31 at St John's Church,  with 2020 festival classes being held there and at The Vale Academy, prior to the closing concert on April 4.
The first festival was held in 1900 but there were some years when it did not take place for various reasons.
Brigg Corn Exchange, in the town centre, was the festival's home for decades - being the area's biggest community venue. However, following its demolition in the 1990s, other venues were employed.
Famous folk song Brigg Fair came to prominence in the early 20th century as a result of the festival. Composer Frederic Delius later produced a classical version which is still performed in concerts across the world.
Fellow composer/arranger Percy Grainger had recorded Joseph Taylor, of Saxby-All-Saints, singing the folk song in 1900 - resulting in this traditional Lincolnshire tune reaching a much wider audience.
The musical Elwes family - then of Manor House, Bigby Street - played a very important part in getting the festival under way.

We recall taking part in poetry classes in the 1960s at the Corn Exchange as a pupil of Glebe Road School, and also reporting the so-called All Winners' Shows at the venue when these were held on Saturday evenings (early 1980s). 
The Lincolnshire & South Humberside Times, based at 57 Wrawby Street, always gave extensive coverage to every music & drama festival. 
The archive pictures seen here - taken at the Corn Exchange - date back to 1965 and show some of the youngsters who enjoyed success, together with members of Brigg Band.


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