Banbridge businesses celebrate 20 years of BuskFest

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Three individuals standing in front of a stone building with a clock tower, holding balloons shaped as the numbers 20. One person also holds a guitar.
L-R Michael Donaghy, Chair of Banbridge Chamber of Commerce, Lord Mayor Councillor Sarah Duffy and Chris Doran from The Nooks band.

Businesses across Banbridge town centre and Lord Mayor Sarah Duffy celebrate 20 years of BuskFest which takes place on Saturday 22 June.

Local businesses are delighted this year’s festival will be staged in the town centre with evening entertainment by The Nooks Acoustic and headline act Ryan McMullan.

Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough, Councillor Sarah Duffy, commented:

“BuskFest is an unmissable date in the diary for Banbridge. The events team anticipate that once again, hundreds of visitors will descend on the town to listen to the live music and enjoy the family fun. This year, the festival has an amazing line up of musical acts and it is hoped that moving to the town centre will encourage people to stay longer and support the local business community whilst they soak up the atmosphere.”

“There will also be lots of free family entertainment throughout the town on the day ensuring that there is fun for all ages to enjoy so I encourage everyone to come along!”

The annual musical extravaganza will see 80 or more buskers animate the streets with live music throughout the day, alongside free family entertainment including musical workshops, face painters, circus performers and characters.

This year, the evening prizegiving and concert has been moved from Solitude Park into the town centre as a way to support local businesses and boost the evening economy. Rising star, Ryan McMullan will headline the stage with newly announced support act, The Nooks Acoustic, helping to draw in the crowds.

Michael Donaghy, Chair of Banbridge Chamber of Commerce, added:

“The businesses in Banbridge are very much looking forward to seeing BuskFest’s main event stay in the town centre this year. It will keep the lively atmosphere going right through to the evening creating further opportunities for people to support the retail and hospitality offering within Banbridge.”

Buskers from across the country and beyond come to participate in the festival with a prize pot of £3,000 and a chance to secure a performance slot at Northern Ireland’s popular Stendhal Festival.

The BuskFest competition kicks off at 2pm on Saturday 22 June; however, festivities will continue right into the evening with an award ceremony taking place on the stage in the town centre from 5pm, followed by The Nooks Acoustic and Ryan’s headline performance to conclude the event.

The event is organised by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and is supported by Banbridge Chamber of Commerce and The Boulevard. Registration to perform at BuskFest is still open and closes at 4pm on 21 June 2024. To register visit www.buskfest.com.