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Acoustic music festival brings tourism into town

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A MUSIC festival which will see a host of big names in acoustic music arrive in Uttoxeter starts today, as hotel owners say they are fully booked with music fans.

Matt Cardle of X-Factor fame, Steve Harley, Fairport Convention and Seth Lakeman are just a few of the artists lined up to entertain festival-goers from today until Sunday for the Acoustic Festival at Uttoxeter Racecourse.

Market Place and Market Street are to be closed between 9am and 6pm today and Saturday.

Hotels across Uttoxeter are expecting full rooms and some are sold out for the weekend.

Organiser Mike Stevens says the team are expecting a younger demographic this year because of Seth Lakeman, Emma Stevens and Matt Cardle.

Mike Stevens, organiser, said: “The event is literally packed full of fantastic live music, a great atmosphere, weird and wonderful performances and music and drumming workshops that invite a lovely sense of community.

“Play guitar, ukulele and drums with fellow festy goers, take part in master class guitar workshops from Jon Gomm and Rodney Branigan and Chris Woods on each day.

“A sessions marquee will host various folk and blues clubs throughout the three days in a two-hour session, each afternoon and evening.

“The two Real Ale tents host two of the stages, so you can sit and enjoy your favourite tipple whilst enjoying the intimate atmosphere and performance.

“The atmosphere is alive and vibrant, with several Morris Dancers and belly dance teams performing as you walk around the festival and plenty of activities that all the family can get involved with.

“Camping, weekend and day tickets are still available on the gate.

“We have a special campsite for Matt Cardle fans called Cardle camp.

“He has been very active and touring lately with his latest single again in the top ten.”

Jim Butterworth, owner of Oldroyd Guesthouse and Spa, in Bridge Street, said: “The fact that the racecourse are putting on so many different events is fantastic news for the town.

“There are no rooms left for the Acoustic Festival weekend.

“It’s great for us and great for the rest of the town, the town needs these events especially when the economy has been at a low for so long and we have so many empty shops in town.

“The racecourse is certainly doing its bit to stimulate growth in the town economy.”

Brandon McBride, manager of the Smithfield Hotel in High Street, said: “It’s a real boost for the business.

“We’re all booked up for the music festival.”

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