Review: Cotton Clouds Festival, Saddleworth Cricket Club
Saddleworth has it going on. There’s a celebration every weekend in this part of the world, not least Cotton Clouds Festival which has now become a highlight of summertime revelry. Popular with locals and clearly attracting crowds from elsewhere, the festival has tuned into the love of merry-making in the area with an event that, three years in, still maintains a mix of ages.
There’s a great inclusive atmosphere at the festival, partly because Saddleworth’s full summer calendar always pulls in an eclectic crowd. I feared Saturday would be torrential since Friday’s weather was dreadful, but the elements were kind and the sun shone for most of the time.
Cotton Clouds is big enough to attract a stellar line-up but small enough to be able to mooch around and not miss anything. A tight ship was run this year and with constant cleaners preventing people from stumbling over rubbish and the beer tents ticking over nicely it was whinge-free.
Tim Peake’s Diner could may be do with a bigger tent next year though, as it is a popular space and Hyde Park Brass’s set was rammed with only room to bob up and down carefully to their soulful parping.
Carnival arts organisation Global Grooves were again a beautiful addition, floating through the crowds with huge ornate elephants’ heads bowing to giggling kids.
On the main stage I loved OMG It’s The Church, a cover band with a James Brown growling pastor parody glitteringly daft and praising sexy Jesus. They lifted the mood when it was too early for tipsiness and the clouds were making empty threats. Later, The House and Garage Orchestra gave a symphony of classic old school tunes and artists including 3 Of A Kind’s Nicholas Gallante performing Baby Cakes. Then there was the collective worship of Reverend and the Makers before finally The Wailers helped to end the evening with us all chanting peace and love under the starry sky.
Images by Carl Gibson.
- Image Gallery: urban scenes and cityscapes by artist Sue Scott
- Twisted Disco: Classical Music Meets Rock. Yllwshrk’s Ian Anderson talks to Northern Soul
- “If you can make people laugh you can make them do anything.” Comedian Paul Holliday talks to Northern Soul
- #ThisIsTheNorth: People’s Powerhouse Convention 2020
Advertising and Sponsorship Opportunities
For advertising and sponsorship opportunities contact Northern Soul’s Founder and Editor Helen Hugent at email@example.com.
Sign up for Northern Soul newsletter
The Northern Soul Poll
Recent Tweets for @Northern_Soul_
Image credit: Carl Sukonik/The Vain Photos.
Halloween looks a little different this year but we’re still excited to see the return of Manchester’s giant monster inflatables, created by artists @filthylukerart and Pedro Estrellas of Designs in Air. #MCRMONSTERS northernsoul.me.uk/photo-gall… pic.twitter.com/r3RuCuNwYw
…and the downright bewildering Piers Morgan to Sir Cliff Richard: "You’re 80, but you look 50". Viewers to their TVs: "No, he bloody well doesn’t!" ‘Life Stories’ ITV Sundays, 9pm
The Bad ‘The Search’. Little Mix recycled talent show. Judges weep while ditching an act (the point of the show), losers declare ‘You ain’t seen the last of us’ (yes, we have) & screeching Melladaze go off like a car alarm in their second chance performance. BBC1 Saturdays, 7pm