• TTDA - FolkEast - Richard Thompson
  • TTDA - FolkEast - Dancers
  • TTDA - FolkEast - Food stalls
  • TTDA - FolkEast - Main Stage


Folk music and art at its best, from near and far, with an added Suffolk twist from 16th - 18th August 2019

Growing in stature every year, East Anglia’s fast-rising FolkEast is back for the 7th time this August, proving why it is nothing like other music festivals.
The three day festival will return to the glorious 300-acre Suffolk estate of 16th-century Glemham Hall, the home of Major Philip Hope-Cobbold, between 16th-18th August 2019. 

And it will be packing a punch with Richard Thompson, Cara Dillon and Karine Polwart headlining. 

Richard Thompson

Leading the way will be formidable folk legend Richard Thompson – a revered singer-songwriter and jaw dropping guitarist– who takes to the main Sunset stage as Sunday night headliner.

A co-founder of trailblazing folk rockers Fairport Convention, Thompson has carved himself a high-class career bringing iconic international status, with anthemic songs like Persuasion, Beeswing and 1952 Vincent Black Lightning becoming classics.

Named as one of Rolling Stone Magazine’s '100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time' he has been honoured with Lifetime Achievement Awards on both sides of the Atlantic - from the Americana Music Association in Nashville, and the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards - as well as garnering an OBE (personally bestowed upon him by the Queen at Buckingham Palace) 

Karine Polwart

FolkEast will also field some of folk’s finest female artists – opening night headliner will be the brilliantly inspired Scottish singer-songwriter and hot property Karine Polwart performing with her Trio (Stephen Polwart and Inge Thomson).

Karine (2018 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards Folk Singer of the Year) is on a roll having released two hugely successful albums in quick succession – A Pocket of Wind Resistance and Laws of Motion and also migrated into the acting world including a role in Radio 4’s drama A Faraway Back of Beyond Place, a two hander with Bill Paterson. A songwriter with heart and soul, Stirlingshire-born Karine is a wonderful wordsmith and captivating performer sure to get the festival off to a grand start.

Cara Dillon

Saturday night at FolkEast will see a very special headline event as the celebrated Irish songstress Cara Dillon (“possibly the world’s most beautiful female voice” – Mojo) takes to the stage with ‘Cara Dillon and Friends’ celebrating the 10th anniversary of her landmark album Hill of Thieves which won the coveted Album of the Year at the 2008 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. Derry-born Cara will be joined by the class line-up of husband Sam Lakeman (piano, guitar), Jarlath Henderson (uillean pipes, whistle), Ed Boyd (guitar). James Fagan (bouzouki), Toby Shaer (fiddle, whistles) and Ben Nicholls (bass). 

Sharon Shannon Band

Also from Ireland, the mighty Sharon Shannon Band will be heading to Suffolk. Born in County Clare, Sharon is a show-stopping accordionist whose career is soaked in the Irish tradition but takes so many more influences on board. Sharon has played for Presidents Clinton and Obama in The White House, received a Lifetime Achievement Meteor award in 2009, and was honoured for ‘outstanding contributions in music’ at the Irish Books, Arts and Music (IBAM) awards in Chicago to say nothing of her 1991 self-titled debut CD being the best-selling album ever of instrumental traditional Irish music.

Ross Ainslie & Jarlath Henderson Trio

Keeping up the Celtic connection, the line-up will be enhanced by the  Ross Ainslie (Scottish bagpipes, whistles) and Jarlath Henderson Trio (uilleann pipes, whistles) whose combined talents create a pipe sound that pushes the boundaries of what Scottish and Irish instruments normally achieve. Dubbed “the new stars of Celtic music,” they’ve crafted music that bursts with fresh energy.

John Smith

FolkEast is also thrilled to announce that the eloquent and exquisite English singer-songwriter/guitarist John Smith will join the 2019 line up. Born in Essex, raised by the Devon seaside, and kicking off in the bars and clubs of Liverpool, John has released six albums including his most recent Hummingbird, with over 10 million Spotify streams. His distinctive, gravelly voice has been heard by audiences all over the world in living rooms, festival tents and sold-out concert halls. Steeped in the lineage of British folk, taking his cue from Richard Thompson and John Martyn, Smith has evolved a transatlantic blend of fingerstyle and slide guitar techniques and a repertoire of up close, no hiding place songs. He has opened for folk greats including John Martyn, Davy Graham and John Renbourn, who called Smith “the future of folk music”.


Flying the flag for Wales will be the effervescent five-piece revivalist traditional band Calan, who sing in both Welsh and English.The band formed in early 2006 when its members ages ranged from just 13 to 22. In 2008, they created great excitement at the Inter Celtic Festival, becoming the only Welsh band to win the coveted international folk band award. They also won best group at the Festival Interceltique de Lorient, Brittany. Playing accordion, harp, guitar, fiddle and Welsh bagpipes, they also have their own champion step dancer.


Advance weekend tickets are available price £120(adult), £108 (full-time students, senior citizens) and £80 for Youth tickets (12-17-year-olds) which must be purchased with an adult ticket. Family weekend tickets for two adults and two 12-17-year-olds are £365. A great offer sees free admission for children aged 11 and under; camping is £30 per tent with a £30 charge for campervans and caravans.

Located close to the A12 (from where the famous FolkEast decorated tree can be seen), the festival will also be running shuttle buses to the site from Wickham Market station.
Attraction name:
Full Adult weekend Ticket £120, £108 concession, £80 youth, 11 and under free entry Day tickets Available from the end of May.
Opening Hours:
16t 17th & 18th August 2019