Saturday, 24 September 2011


The 'floral clock', incorporating the festival's original 'fiddle' logo
In June 1999 the original Middlewich Folk & Boat Festival celebrated its tenth anniversary and was given the rare honour of a commemorative 'floral clock' (these things always seem to be called 'floral clocks' whether or not there is an actual clock involved).
It was difficult to get any picture at all of the design without borrowing special equipment from the fire station just up the road and this was really the best of several shots taken on the day.
In the background are members of the then festival committee looking...shall we say....a little bit past the first flush of youth. Ten years is a long time to keep a festival of this nature going and to do so is a great achievement, so the floral tribute was well deserved.
In its day, Middlewich's folk festival was one of the best in the North-west and was the first such local event to really put the town on the map.
But finance was always a problem and eventually, one year short of its twentieth anniversary (the 2001 event did not take place because of foot and mouth disease), the original festival had to end.
Middlewich Town Council came to the rescue and a new format, incorporating the Middlewich Rose Fete and other community events has now taken on the MFAB mantle. To reflect the festival's new setup the name seems to have been subtly changed to the 'Middlewich FAB Festival' and it is indeed fortuitous that the words Folk And Boat should make such a happy acronym.
The floral clock and flagpole, incidentally, is on the site of Middlewich's former fire station.

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