John 'Eric Bloodaxe' Liversedge

Hello again, welcome to our 38th annual Kirkstall Festival, it’s nice to see you! I do hope you enjoy your day with us and we are blessed with some good weather. We have plenty of entertainment for you and all the family to enjoy. 

Our theme this year is Vikings in Kirkstall, make sure you see them in the arena!  Did you know the first documented reference to Leeds was in 946 AD part of a Norse kingdom ruled by Viking Eric Bloodaxe at Loidis - the Saxon name for Leeds.

The ever popular Birds of Prey display is not to be missed. Check out the Battle of the Bands on the Bowling Green Stage, details of event timings are in the programme available at the entrances and Information Desk.
If you are in the Cloisters at 4pm there is every chance you will see the Bishop Philip of Kirkstall, yes Kirkstall now has its own Bishop!!!
As always I have many people to thank for helping to put the Festival, run by volunteers, together - Becky and Guy from Parks & Countryside, Mark, Leslie, Richard and Angie from Museums & Galleries for allowing us to use these beautiful grounds of Kirkstall Abbey. I would also like to thank our local schools who always take part, parents, teachers and children all give up their time to take part. I should also like to thank our sponsors who help us financially. Grants are few and far between these days and we really do appreciate the assistance they give us.

There are many others who are involved in helping us put the Festival together by giving us their valuable time, they are too many to mention but you know who you are and we thank you. I always thank our Field Team volunteers, the lads and lasses in our festival high viz jackets, they do a wonderful job setting up the grounds on the Thursday and Friday and then working all day Saturday, always helpful, always smiling, grafters every one! Of course I mustn’t forget our Management Committee made up of the well educated, eccentric, introverted, extroverted, with a few oddballs thrown in, yet they do a wonderful and at times difficult job in bringing the Festival together, they are all volunteers.

We have a thriving community in Kirkstall why not join us, volunteer to help with the Festival. The award winning Kirkstall In Bloom group needs volunteers, they look after the Drink and be Grateful Fountain Garden area and the planting at the cenotaph. The Kirkstall Art Trail is next weekend. So much to do, so much to see!

Have a wonderful day with us, enjoy yourselves and please be safe, I will be here with you today providing my carers get my medication correct, it all went wrong last year, woke up at Leeds Festival!

John 'Eric Bloodaxe' Liversedge