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Arts festival WestFest will take place this June in Glasgow’s West End.  Picture: Photo: Gavin McCourt
Arts festival WestFest will take place this June in Glasgow’s West End.Photo: Gavin McCourt

New cultural and community festival hits West End

Concerts, performances, recitals, galas, talks and exhibitions will feature

A new arts festival will take place this June in Glasgow’s West End.

WestFest will take place from Friday June 2 to Sunday June 25 with 200 events across 60 venues.

Concerts, performances, recitals, galas, talks and exhibitions will all feature along with authors’ events and a Make Music Day programme on June 21.

A programme of free community events will be at the centre of the festival, including The Big Sunday at Kelvingrove Bandstand, Vinicombe Street Gala, Bard in the Yard @ Kelvingrove Park, the Mansfield Park Street Festival and Queen Margaret Drive Festival.

WestFest director Brendon McIlroy said the new festival was a response to ‘overwhelming demand’ for community and cultural events in the West End, in the absence of former festivals.

'Exciting'

Brendon said: “Its hugely exciting that we are finally able to launch WestFest this year.

Welcome to WestFest
Welcome to WestFest

"It’s been four years since there was a proper festival in the West End and after a very challenging few years people need events, arts and culture in their lives more than ever.

“The terrific attendance and overwhelmingly positive feedback we’ve received for our events last year, demonstrates more than ever that there is a big demand for accessible events and activities in the West End.

“It would be hugely disappointing if there wasn't some form of festival again this year.”

Brendon said: “At the end of the day this is all about responding to community need and giving people what they want.

 

It’s been four years since there was a proper festival in the West End and after a very challenging few years people need events, arts and culture in their lives more than ever.

Brendon McIlroy

 

“Events programmes are becoming increasingly difficult to deliver in light of funding cuts and if WestFest don’t fill the void - who will?

“People need a bit of levity and fun in their lives more than ever and we are uniquely placed to deliver that.”As well as their events programme, WestFest will be running workshops and projects with community groups and a schools book programme which has been ongoing since October last year.

Anyone who wants to run an event as part of the festival is encouraged to get in touch via the website www.westfest.uk.

A programme of free community events is at the heart of WestFest. Photo: Gavin McCourt
A programme of free community events is at the heart of WestFest. Photo: Gavin McCourt

WestFest will distribute 50,000 free A5 brochures throughout the central belt in April featuring all event listings as well as promoting events via a new listings website and social media platforms.

The WestFest hub will also launch in March where the team will be offering advice and support on everything participants might need for their events from marketing and event planning to insurance and budgeting.

The West End Festival ran for many years over the summer months but did not happen last year.

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