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News article created on 16 August 2012

Canalside cultural festival to be biggest yet

The 2012 Rochdale Canal Festival, now in its sixth year, starts this Saturday (18 August) with an exciting series of cultural and family focussed events. The fun spans across the whole of the 32-mile long canal from Sowerby Bridge in Yorkshire to Manchester city centre.

This year’s programme of events really opens up the canal to encourage more people to discover it Lucy Rogers

With over 50 free events, the festival on the Rochdale Canal features everything from a poetry trail running past 92 locks and Olympic art to guided walks, bug hunting, outdoor theatre, kayaking and bike rides. A nine-day Olympic style relay will run throughout the entire festival, a slow race that occurs via bike, foot and a traditional horse-drawn boat.

For the first time, a series of events will take place at Piccadilly Basin in Manchester city centre. Events include a Mancunian take on the American drive-in, a canal-side pop up cinema featuring films in Ducie street car park and the world’s first permanent LomoWall. In addition a permanent floating garden will be erected and various activities to engage with younger children will take place.

Discover the canal

Lucy Rogers, development manager, Canal & River Trust said: “The Rochdale Canal Festival has been a huge success since we started the first festival six years ago. This year’s programme of events really opens up the canal to encourage more people to discover it, take some enjoyable memories and embrace it as a place to work, live and play.” 

The nine-day-long festival will culminate with the first Ancoats Festival at the new Islington marina, on Sunday 26 August between 12 and 4pm with live folk music, a BBQ, canoeing taster sessions, a live theatre boat performance with Fragments international ensemble and circus skills with The Circus House.

For the latest information on the 2012 Canal Festival visit www.myrochdalecanal.org,uk or follow @myrochdalecanal on Twitter.

The 2012 Canal Festival takes place from 18-26 August 2012.