Hundreds flock to Reepham for two-day music extravaganza

Reepham music festival performing on the Hansells Stage are ELO Again.Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Reepham music festival performing on the Hansells Stage are ELO Again.Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

A two-day extravaganza which gives up-and-coming musicians the chance to shine alongside long-established acts got under way in style.

The Reepham Festival yesterday saw local performers including 16-year-old Nief Carroll and Norwich five-piece The Thinking Men perform to a sun-drenched crowd as they opened the event's two stages.

Some 2,000 people are expected to flock to the festival over the two days, and last night the event saw two-tone Ska legends The Selecter perform.

Now in its eighth year, festival organisers said it was set to be the best one yet.

Festival director Steve Jenkins said: 'In terms of the weather and turnout, we are feeling incredibly lucky. People were queuing to get in before we opened the gates and the town has really been involved with it.'

Rookery Meadow and St Mary's Church hosted the opening day while today the festival has moved to Whitwell and Reepham Station.

Jill Leigh, 44, from Reepham, was at the festival with her husband Richard and their children Thomas, 14, and Katie, 11. Attending for the second year, she said: 'It's a beautiful site and there are some really good bands and musicians. We are really lucky to have this in Reepham and it's amazing how people from all over the country come to Reepham for it.'

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Meanwhile Christine Phillips was celebrating her 67th birthday at the festival - and testing the water before going to Latitude next summer.

'I wanted to experience a festival before going to Latitude and I'm really enjoying it,' said Mrs Phillips, who lives in Reepham and was there with her husband Norman.

'There's a good selection of different music and lots of good side stalls, and it's really well organised.'

The festival continues today with performances by Sophie G and the Good Times and Walkway among others. In addition to the festival, there is the inaugural Little Vintage Fair at St Mary's Church.

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