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Summer festival returns to Gateshead with music, pop-up bars, street food and a Flower Power Sunday finale

Chronicle Live logo Chronicle Live 11/08/2022 Barbara Hodgson

A family-friendly festival will come blasting this August for the first time since the pandemic and helping it make up for lost time will be a packed summer play-list alongside street food, beer and cocktails.

Gateshead Summer Fest, which last took place in 2019, is to make its return on the August Bank Holiday weekend and will include Flower Power Sunday when festival-goers are being encouraged to add colour to the day by wearing their brightest outfits. There will be prizes up for grabs too for those that stand out the most.

The two-day event will be held at Gateshead Rugby Club in Low Fell; hosted by the team behind its annual Gateshead Beer & Music Festival. And regulars can expect the same array of drinks at a range of pop-up bars, plus BBQ food and summer-inspired dishes.

Read more: North East festivals still to come this summer

A spokesman said: We are looking to bring the summer vibes to Low Fell with our very own cocktail and gin bars. We will also see the return of the prosecco bar as well as a huge selection of ciders and lagers.

Various bars will be set up at Gateshead Rugby Club including a gin bar which featured at an earlier gin festival © Publicity Picture Various bars will be set up at Gateshead Rugby Club including a gin bar which featured at an earlier gin festival

"All this will be complemented with a great selection of summer-inspired food options.” The opening day, Saturday, August 27, will run from noon to 10.30pm and helping to set the festival mood will be South Shields band The Understudies who will be headlining that night with a mix of rock, pop, punk and indie.

The Manchester Anthems also will be taking to the main stage in the marquee to pay tribute to the likes of Stone Roses, Oasis, Happy Mondays and The Smiths. Also on the programme will be Newcastle's The Pretty Weeds playing hits from across the decades; busking duo Jen & Liv - who were recently in the spotlight when Tyson Fury danced along to their music in the city centre - and The Reflex who will turn back the clock to full-on eighties with songs by Haircut 100, Prince, Simple Minds, Rick Astley, Tears for Fears and Human League.

Then the family-focused Flower Power Sunday, on August 28, will run from noon to 10pm with another wide selection of drink, food and music - ranging from rockabilly sounds to Dire Straits hits - plus family entertainment from 2pm-6pm which will include craft activities, animal-handling sessions, magic acts, face-painting and garden games. The local magicians will be Chris Cross, who says he has performed at celebrity events such as Boy George‘s 50th birthday party and privately for Alan Shearer and Sam Fender, and Martin Duffy who has been a familiar face across the region over the past 30 years.

County Durham mobile farm Animals About Town will be bringing along some petting creatures, enabling youngsters to get up close and personal with animals and learn more about them, and the Low Fell Kiln Pottery Studio will be offering hands-on opportunities.

Music-wise there will a celebration of the nineties era by The Britpack; Phil Davids & The Good times Band serving uo covers; Bessie and the Zinc Buckets playing everything from rockabilly and bluegrass to classic rock sounds - and happy to take requests - plus The Straits UK who will be kicking off the Sunday teatime slot with hits from Dire Straits' back-catalogue.

Flower Power Sunday will play out with South Shields' new party anthem band Two Metres Apart - made up of musicians and a local comic who will add plenty humour to the mix - and acoustic duo Love, Sophie. For timings of the full festival line-up and to buy tickets, which cost £12 a day (free to under-18s), see here.

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