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The festival brings together the very best of local and regional folk music
and dance, plus lots of free activities to entertain the whole family.


Rochdale Folk Festival is the little sister of Manchester Folk Festival.
After three years bringing folk, roots and acoustic music to the masses of Manchester we were invited to run a weekend-long event in Rochdale, and so Rochdale Folk Festival was born.

Initially due to take place in June 2020, the global pandemic slowed us down, but didn’t defeat us! Our first festival ran 4th – 6th June 2021 and was a great success!

The festival is made up of a free live music in some of Rochdale’s best-loved pubs including The Medicine Tap and The Flying Horse, free street entertainment, including Morris Dancing and family activities.

We’re extremely grateful to our partners and host venues for supporting the first Rochdale Folk Festival.

Thanks to: Rochdale Borough Council, Rochdale BID, Arts Council England, GMCA, The Medicine Tap, The Flying Horse, Touchstones Rochdale and St Marys in the Baum.

Who are we?

Rochdale Folk Festival is produced by the English Folk Expo (EFEx) team. EFEx supports the English folk, roots and acoustic music sector through a variety of projects and initiatives. To learn more about EFEx and our work please visit englishfolkexpo.com.

We had such a great time at Rochdale Folk Festival in 2021. We saw loads of free live music and discovered some new fantastic bands. We can’t wait for next year!

David Agnew

You may well be familiar with Festival Artistic Director, David Agnew. David is also the Artistic Director of Manchester Folk Festival, The Met, Bury and Head for the Hills festival in Ramsbottom. He also programmes artists for other events such as Timber Festival and The Lost Carnival.