AFTER a fallow year in 2018, Platform Festival will return to The Old Station in Pocklington from July 10 to 13.

Taking part will be comedians Chris Ramsey and Al Murray and musical acts The Shires, Hothouse Flowers, Seth Lakeman, Lucy Spraggan, The South and The Grand Slambovians.

Now into its fourth year, Platform Festival is organised by Pocklington Arts Centre's Janet Farmer and James Duffy and will see thousands of people descend on the East Yorkshire market town's former railway station for four days.

PAC director Janet Farmer says: "Platform Festival is without doubt one of the highlights of our live events programme. The festival has a unique and intimate atmosphere and the 2019 event has what we believe to be one of the most dynamic and diverse line-ups we've programmed.

"We look forward to building on the success of previous years where we have welcomed the likes of Lucinda Williams, KT Tunstall, Mary Chapin Carpenter and Ross Noble to the town. Tickets have sold out in previous years, so advance booking is advised."

North Eastern comedian and sitcom writer Chris Ramsey will be first up on July 10 at 8pm with his latest show, The Just Happy to Get Out Of The House Tour. Al Murray, alias The Pub Landlord, was the first name to be confirmed for the Platform line-up and will be in Pock on July 11 at 7.30pm with his 2019 show, Landlord Of Hope & Glory. What will he make of Brexit by then? Can't wait.

Five years after first playing Pocklington Arts Centre, the chart-topping English country act The Shires will be heading back to Pock to perform there again on July 12 at 8pm.

"Ben Earle and Crissie Rhodes have become one of the most talked-about bands in the home of country music, due to their record-breaking albums and pulse- racing live shows," says Janet.

York singer-songwriter Beth McCarthy will be the support act in the wake of releasing her debut EP, Self Portrait, featuring a song co-written with Earle, Shame.

On July 13, the festival's grand finale will kick off at 1pm – doors, 12 noon – for a full day and night of musicians performing across three stages, headlined by Ireland's Hothouse Flowers. "Something amazing happens when the band steps on stage," says Janet. "There is a sense of musical adventure, an impulse to reach new heights as the band and audience become one, and the world becomes a different place for a while."

"We're also delighted that charismatic singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Seth Lakeman will return to Pocklington after last year’s whirlwind world tour in rock legend Robert Plant's band, the Sensational Space Shifters."

Lucy Spraggan, widely recognised as a leading lights in the LGBT musical community, will be on the Saturday bill too. "Her songs have something to say," says Janet. "Lucy has performed at many major festivals, including Glastonbury and Isle of Wight, and now she brings her trademark sound, complete with a rattle of rap dropped into sing-along folk-style numbers, to the Platform stage."

The nine-piece band The South features former members of the Beautiful South, including vocalist Alison Wheeler, performing songs made famous by the Hull band plus a few South originals.

Heading all the way from New York City will be The Grand Slambovians, alias "the hillbilly Pink Floyd", with their blend of rock'n'roll, folk and quirky Americana.

Other acts will include Leeds anthemic rock-pop brothers The Dunwells; the Americana-inspired Dan Webster Band; York bluesman Boss Caine; Hull’s Late Night Marauders; York singer-songwriter Jess Gardham and the 13-strong ukulele collective Grand Old Uke Of York.

In addition, the Access to Music Stage will feature some of the North and East Yorkshire region's best emerging talent. Look out for street food, Prosecco and gin bars and craft ales on site.

Ticket details can be found at or

Charles Hutchinson