I wish the three-day festival at York Sports Club in 2020 every success, but I would like to correct your report asserting it will be ‘the first-ever York Festival’ (York Festival acts unveiled, November 25). There have been many festivals in York. For instance:

In 1909 the four-day York Pageant in Museum Gardens had well over 1,000 actors, singers and musicians taking part.

In 1951 the Prime Minister came to York for a two-week Festival rivalling Edinburgh’s, including the Hallé orchestra (Sir John Barbirolli) in York Minster, the London Philharmonic Orchestra (Sir Adrian Boult) at the Rialto, concertos in the Merchant Adventurers’ Hall and the Mystery Plays first revival.

In 1957 HM the Queen and Prince Philip came to the York Festival (though they had to meet Mystery Play actors in Tempest Anderson Hall, due to rain).

In 1977 the first York Early Music Festival took place – an annual 10 day event every year since.

The York Festival supported by City of York Council and other sponsors (with Mystery Plays) continued until the 1988 performance in Museum Gardens.

While I would not expect reporter Nadia Jefferson-Brown to know about York’s musical history, there are many people with memories of other Festivals in the heart of York. If readers are interested, there is more to be found about the Mystery Plays in the archive of the National Centre for Early Music.

Margaret Scott,

Mystery Play Archivist,

National Centre for Early Music,

St Margarets Church, Walmgate, York