Wickerman Festival

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The Wickerman Festival
WickermanLogo.jpg
Location(s) Dundrennan, Scotland
Years active 2001 - present
Date(s) Third weekend of July
Genre Rock, Ska, Alternative rock, Northern Soul, Dance, Indie, World music, Punk, Reggae, Folk music.
The Wickerman from the 2006 festival

The Wickerman Festival is an annual music festival held near to Dundrennan in Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland. Dubbed 'Scotland's Alternative Music festival', the festival celebrated its 10th Birthday in 2011 on Friday 22nd & Saturday 23 July.

It began in 2001 when the festivals artistic director Sid Ambrose, whilst working with the Stewartry Music Initiative, hit upon the idea of a local counter-culture based family-friendly festival due to the surrounding area being inextricably linked with various locations used within the classic British horror film The Wicker Man (1973) starring Christopher Lee and Edward Woodward. He took the idea to local farmer Jamie Gilroy, and by doing this, they ensured that the festival would eventually settle within a natural amphitheatre of 120 acres (0.49 km2) of prime Galloway grazing land at East Kirkcarswell Farm, Dundrennan.

Musically as well as creatively, the festival has been likened to a smaller version of Glastonbury with a widely eclectic mix of music to suit everyone. It has several stages and these include a main stage (Summerisle), the Axis Sound System reggae sound systemtent, the Acoustic Village, a stage for punk/ska/northern soul called The Scooter Tent, The Solus Tent for new Scottish bands, several dance tents, as well as a children’s area, workshops, beer tent, crafts, a cinema, and much more.

The festival climaxes on Saturday at midnight with the burning of a giant 30 ft (9.1 m) Wickerman, built by local craftsmen Trevor Leat and Alex Rigg.

Its motto is: "The Wickerman Festival - it's better than it needs to be!"

2013 festival[edit]

The 2013 festival was held on the 26th & 27th of July, and featured artists such as Primal Scream, Chic, Amy MacDonald & Dexys on the main Summerisle stage. Dance DJs included Matt Hinde, James Ryan and Luke Stanger. The Scooter Tent featured Stiff Little Fingers and The Rezillos.

2012 festival[edit]

The 2012 festival was held on the 20th & 21st of July, and featured artists such as The Scissor Sisters, Texas, The View, Newton Faulkner, The Levellers, Matt Hinde and Kassidy.

2011 festival[edit]

In 2011, artists included Diddums, James, Feeder, The Coral, Echo & The Bunnymen, Noisettes, The Pigeon Detectives, The Hoosiers, Craig Charles Funk and Soul Club (DJ Set), Matt Hinde (DJ Set), The Damned, From The Jam and Reverieme.

2010 festival[edit]

The 2010 event saw Ocean Colour Scene play the Saturday night headline slot before the ceremonial and spectacular burning of the Wickerman, the 808 State DJ's then rounded off the main stage proceedings. On Friday night the Summerisle stage hosted Teenage Fanclub before a storming set from headliners The Charlatans. DJ Matt Hinde in the Skiddle dance tent once again.

Buzzcocks, The Futureheads, Tony Christie, Goldie Lookin' Chain, The Undertones, The Go! Team, Withered Hand, The Saw Doctors, Fenech Soler, Erland and the Carnival, Sons & Daughters, The Grass Mountain Hobos, Back To The Planet, Monkeyrush, The Sex Pistols Experience, Ed Tudor-Pole, The Amphetameanies & Root System all also appeared on various stages over the weekend.

2009 festival[edit]

The 2009 line up included The Human League headlining on the Friday night, The Zutons closed the Saturday night after Candi Staton. The Dance Tent saw the Hot Chip DJs, Danny Rampling and Matt Hinde on the decks. The Magic Numbers, Billy Bragg, Idlewild, Dreadzone, Zion Train, Utah Saints, The Dickies, Bad Manners, Kid British and Pearl and the Puppets all appeared over the weekend.

2008 festival[edit]

Artists that played Wickerman 2008 included KT Tunstall, Gary Numan, Matt Hinde (DJ Set), Broken Records, The Foxes, Dub Pistols, The Cuban Brothers, Hugh Cornwell (ex-Stranglers frontman), Neville Staple, Dream Machine, Monkish, Attic Lights, The Hacienda Tour (featuring Shaun Ryder, Bez, and DJ Graeme Park), X-Press2, Annie Nightingale and Headphone Disco.

2007 festival[edit]

Artists that performed in 2007 included Fun Lovin' Criminals, The Proclaimers, Hayseed Dixie, The Orb, DJ Matt Hinde, The Negatives, The Targets, The Common Empire, Cider Spiders, Modus, Darkwater, The Call, The Beat, The Rezillos, The Peatbog Faeries, The Yardbirds, Eat Static, Jah Wobble, Neck, Uniting The Elements, I Am Kloot, Skaville UK, Popup, The Low Miffs, The Kazoo Funk Orchestra, Black Affair, Miss The Occupier, Only Joe Kane, Saint Jude's Infirmary, Miss King and the Cougars, John Langhan, Ardent John, Taiko Drummers, Andi Neate, Sally Campbell, Jam Squad!, Andy Lang & the Well, The Stompswampers, Sixpeopleaway, Copy Haho, Our Lunar Activities, How to Swim, Frightened Rabbit, Clean George IV, Dance Lazarus Dance!, and Y'all Is Fantasy Island.

Discussing his first ever Wickerman, in 2007, XFM Scotland's Jim Gellatly said: "The most family friendly festival I've been to, and a brilliant weekend. If you're ever tempted to take kids to Glastonbury, at least try out Wickerman first. A pretty successful jaunt all round, and I'm already looking forward to next year."

In November 2007, Wickerman won the category of 'Best Grass Roots Festival' at the UK Festival Awards. The only other Scottish festival to win was the John Lennon Festival in Durness.

2006 festival[edit]

The line up included The Alarm, New Model Army, The Aliens, Sandi Thom, System 7, Matt Hinde (DJ Set) and the Sensational Alex Harvey Band.

2005 festival[edit]

The 2005 festival was headlined by The Stranglers, Dreadzone, Alabama 3, Arthur Brown, Neville Staples, and Space Ritual.

2004 festival[edit]

2004 included Aereogramme, Buzzcocks, The Selector, Spiritualized, AntiProduct and The Levellers.

2003 festival[edit]

Ozric Tentacles, The Damned, The Beat, Dead Men Walking, Bad Manners & Nine Below Zero

2002 festival[edit]

2001 festival[edit]

Stiff Little Fingers, Spear of Destiny

Awards[edit]

It has been nominated for 2 festival awards:

  • Best Cult Following 2005
  • Best Grassroots Festival 2006
Wickerman 2006 goers

Charities[edit]

The Wickerman Festival supports the following charities:

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 54°49′08″N 3°55′30″W / 54.819°N 3.925°W / 54.819; -3.925