GFest 2017 to get off to a rousing start –final programme details


GFest 2017 to get off to a rousing start

On Saturday 15th July the fourth Gnosall Festival,known as GFest 2017,will begin.  Ten days of events will celebrate the civil Parish of Gnosall,which also includes Moreton and Knightley,its local environment and heritage,its people ,their talents and skills.  Activities are all organised by the local community and instead of bringing in celebrities from elsewhere,local ‘celebrities’take centre stage.

The 11th century church of St Lawrence is an appropriate venue for one of the first events,the opening of the church tower.  If you fancy a climb to the top you will be rewarded,weather permitting,with a fantastic panorama of the countryside as well as a bird’s eye view of the village of Gnosall below.  While there you can also see the church bell loft and a demonstration by the ringers.

The Fire Station will open its doors to the public for the day on 15th,always a favourite with the children,and if you take along your car,it can be washed in aid of charity.  Also that morning at 11.00 there will be a  Loopy Laps Fun Run at the Sports Club off Brookhouse Road.  Mary Booth,Vice-Chair of GFest,says:  ‘In the past we have had parents,grandparents and children taking part. This event is a bit different and looks to be very amusing,with an obstacle course!’

Drama fans are catered for in the evening with a Murder Mystery ‘Vengeance is sweet’performed by Gnosall Players in the Grosvenor Centre.  A meal is included,so advance booking is essential.

Sunday 16th July starts on a different tone with an ecumenical GFest service in St Lawrence Church at 10.30am.  Civic dignitaries have been invited to join the congregation.  Those who prefer the outdoors can go on a family bike ride starting from the allotments car park off Station Road.

In the afternoon the church features again with tours of the building conducted by an acknowledged expert who can show you hidden secrets of one of the Thousand Best Churches of England (according to Simon Jenkins).  For children there will be pond-dipping on the Acres Open Space and on the re-instated boardwalk.

Weekday events during GFest 2017

Between the two weekends of Gnosall Festival there will be many interesting and unusual activities taking place.  In the evening on Monday 17th July there will be a family countryside walk entitled ‘Shropshire Union’starting from the allotment car park.  On Tuesday afternoon people are asked to bring their coins to the Millennium Way,the disused railway line,to make a ‘Line of Coins’in aid of local GFest projects.  That evening there will be a choice between attending a session of Gnosall Handbell Ringers or going on a canal boat trip.  However,because that trip is already fully booked,a second canal trip has been organised a week later on 25th July which is also now fully sold out.

Gnosall Heritage Group is presenting an open afternoon and evening on the history of schools in Gnosall,Moreton and Knightley on Wednesday 19th July.  This year marks the 60th anniversary of a school being on the site in Lowfield Lane. The Group will have old school photos from the many schools in the Parish and even a Victorian schoolroom set up in the Grosvenor Centre.  People can join a village tour which takes in historic buildings in the village centre and starts at 3pm.

A free Antiques Valuation Event will take place alongside the Heritage event from 4 to 7pm,with staff from Cuttlestones doing the valuations.  People may bring up to two items each.  Then GGs Youth Club are holding a treasure hunt and barbecue on the Grosvenor Centre Field from 6.00pm open to all.  A folk evening is being held at the Moreton Millennium Centre with the Crooked Bawbees that Wednesday too.

Classical music including Carnival of the Animals is on the programme for a GFest concert at the Gnosall Memorial Village Hall on Thursday 20th July at 7.00pm.  Young musicians from St Lawrence Primary Academy will play,as well as the village Handbell Ringers,and Serenata Ensemble,who wowed the audience in 2015. ‘Be prepared for an evening to remember’says organiser Mary Booth.

The weekdays finish with Friday’s events –an Open Morning at the Phoenix Club,which is so popular with senior members of the community.  The younger ones can go straight to the Fun Fair on the Village Green on Brookhouse Road when schools break up for the summer holidays that afternoon.

21st July is the start of the GFest Beer Festival at the Royal Oak.  There will be live music,a hog roast and on the Friday evening a ukulele concert.  Cllr Pat Alker,Chair of Gnosall Parish Council who help organise GFest,says:‘There is something for everyone,so don’t miss out!  It is two years till the next GFest.’

GFest 2017 to end with weekend of delights

The ten days of Gnosall Festival which runs from 15th to 25th July will conclude with an action-packed weekend.  On both days there will be the Made in Gnosall exhibition in the Grosvenor Centre,with over 20 stalls displaying the talents of local crafts-people.  On Saturday there will also be Gnosall Painting Group’s Exhibition there in the Brearley Room.  The Senior Youth Group of Gnosall Methodist Church will display the graffiti panel which they have created. The event is free to enter and children going round Made in Gnosall can do a competition to find Lego figures on the stalls.

From 11am to 3pm on Saturday there will be a new Community and Countryside Event on the field behind the Grosvenor Centre.  Local charities such as the Community First Responders,Fire Engine and the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) will have stands,as well as organisations including GAGA (Gnosall Allotments Association) and GLEAN library committee.  There will be a stall selling local strawberries too and a bar for Pimms and other drinks.

In the morning a walk will set off around Audmore Loop.  In the afternoon the fun fair will start up again on the Village Green and there will be a second session of the Royal Oak Beer Festival.  In Moreton Gnosall Singers are presenting a concert at the Millennium Centre.  Quite a day,with something for all ages and tastes!

The highlight for Sunday 23rd July will be Best Kept Village Open Gardens,with eight gardens and the allotments to visit.  If you wish you can take the minibus from the Grosvenor Centre,included in the ticket price of only £5.

Made in Gnosall,on its second day,will have new taster craft workshops (book at the exhibition).  So if you fancy making either jewellery or cards,come along in good time.  Those whose skills are more in the kitchen can enter the GFest Bake Off competition.  Details on how to enter are available from the Parish Office.

While the Fun Fair continues on the Green,at 5pm the GFest 2017 Prize Draw will take place at the Grosvenor Centre,with the Town Crier,Peter Taunton  officiating at the auction of cakes and goodies and presenting prizes to the Bake Off winners.  ‘This should again be a most amusing event as the Town Crier has a talent for getting bids’says Kenneth Ingram,Chair of GFest 2017.

The Horns Inn will host a Gnosall quiz and buffet that Sunday evening starting at 7pm,so check up on your local knowledge! The very last event will be the second trip up the canal on Tuesday 25th (now fully booked) with a fish and chip supper.  You won’t have to take your fishing rods though!

Any proceeds from GFest 2017 will be distributed to local projects within the Parish of Gnosall,including Moreton and Knightley.  Kenneth Ingram,Chair of GFest 2017,says:‘GFest could not happen without the voluntary efforts of many people and organisations,including Gnosall Parish Council.  We thank them and those who  have provided financial support,including Visit Stafford and Gnosall Parish News.’


More information is available on the GFest pages of the website  A detailed programme of events is available.  Please contact the Parish Office 01785 822685.

All events may be subject to change.


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