Pennine Waterways News

Thursday 5 February 2009

Festival will Light up Snowy Standedge

The annual Imbolc Celtic Fire Festival is to be celebrated on Saturday 7th February at Standedge Tunnel, Marsden, and is just what is needed as the area shivers under a blanket of snow!

The spectacle, which has been held for 15 years, includes a torchlit procession, starting from Marsden Railway Station car park at 7.00 pm, along Reddisher Road to Tunnel End. The crowds will be entertained by theatrical performances, a dazzling pyrotechnic display and fire sculptures.

This year's festival is set to be the biggest and best yet with live music from a local singing group, a fire circus and a battle not to be missed between Jack Frost and the Green Man, all set to keep the public sizzling through the night at Standedge.

James Dean, visitor services manager at Standedge, said: "This will be my first Imbolc Festival as manager of Standedge and from what I've heard it's an event not to be missed. I'm really proud that Standedge can call the festival home. It's set to be a fantastic night so we hope as many people can join us as possible."

A series of workshops have been ongoing throughout January at Standedge Visitor Centre where people have had the chance to learn some fire juggling skills and brush up on their performing skills in preparation for the festival.

Imbolc is a 2000 year old Celtic Festival which marks the first signs of spring, marking the time when the Earth begins to wake-up after its winter sleep. The lighting of candles and fires represents the return of warmth and the increasing power of the Sun.

Members of the public are asked not to bring dogs as the fireworks may distress animals.

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