Pickering is gearing up for another five-day feast of nostalgia to celebrate the decade that changed the world, the Swinging Sixties.

Now in its seventh year, the Pickering 60s Festival will be staged from June 11 to June 15 and most of it is free.

The main attraction is live 60s music from both headline and local bands but there will also be a parade of classic 60s vehicles, fancy dress, period hairstyling, memorabilia stalls, and much more. During the evening on each day of the event there will be a local 60s tribute band, karaoke or disco in most of the pubs in Pickering.

The event, which originally started with a single, free concert in the town centre, has expanded into a five-day festival and a band of volunteers has spent the last 12 months organising the line-up of live music, classic cars, memorabilia and a pop-up museum.

The headline band will be The Fortunes, a 60s band which had several top-ten hits including ‘You’ve Got Your Troubles’ and whose single ‘Caroline’ was adopted by the pirate radio station, Radio Caroline, as its theme tune.

The big day is the Saturday which kicks off in the Market Place with memorabilia stalls and a display of 60s cars, motor bikes and scooters which will parade through the town later in the afternoon.

From 4pm ‘til late, there will be buskers and performances by The Fortunes and by Little Miss Sixties, a talented singer named Nancy Ann Lee who performs songs by such as Lulu, Little Eva, Sandie Shaw, Dusty Springfield, Carole King and Connie Francis.

On Thursday, June 12, The Fourmost, a group of performers who have appeared with many of the big names of the 60s, stage a concert in Pickering’s Kirk Theatre. The show starts at 7.30pm and tickets are on sale at Pickering Tourist Information Centre (01751 473791) and the box office at the theatre (01751 474833).

The following evening at Pickering Memorial Hall there will be a Golden Greats of the 60s show. Tickets are £10 each on the door or can be reserved on 01723 366811.

Meanwhile, the North Yorkshire Moors Railway is entering into the spirit of things with a number of Swinging Sixties events throughout the festival.

A pop-up museum displaying all types of 60s memorabilia will be staged in the Education Centre on Platform 2, at Pickering Station from the Wednesday to the Sunday.

At Levisham Station there will be live music from two top bands of the 60s circuit. On the Saturday afternoon it will be music by Nashville Teens (of Tobacco Road fame) and on Sunday afternoon, performances by The New Amen Corner (Bend Me, Shape Me). You gain free entry to the live music when you have a valid travel ticket for that day, otherwise a £5 platform charge per person will apply. There will be a real ale bar and display of 60s vehicles.

Pickering Beck Isle Museum is also staging a series of 60s themed events throughout the festival.

One of the event organisers, Trevor Moss said: “The festival has turned out to be a very popular event, though it has been marred in the past by rain. We attract people from all over the country because of their love of 60s music and their nostalgia for the decade.

“But young people like it too, especially the girls, who dress up in 60s clothing such as mini-skirts and Mary Quant dresses. We often get up to 1,500 people for the events on the Saturday.”

Classics bring feel of period

ONE of the highlights of the Pickering 60s Festival is the opportunity to admire and wax nostalgic over some classic vehicles.

Owners of classic cars, scooters, motorbikes and vans produced in the late fifties and sixties are invited to add a period feel to the town during the weekend.

On Saturday June 14 vehicles are welcome to arrive at any time of day. There will be limited parking available in the Market Place and the option to take part in the Classic Vehicle Parade through the town, starting at the Recreation Ground at 4.15pm. The vehicles process to the Market Place, where for about an hour visitors can take photos and chat to owners.

On Sunday June 15, a Classic Sixties’ Vehicles run through North Yorkshire starts and ends at Pickering Recreation Ground, 11am for departure.

Classic Car event organiser Jim Howie says: “We’ve had some interesting applications already, but there’s still room for more. All we ask is that anyone interested in taking part does so through our official application form as numbers are limited for both the Classic Vehicle Parade on Saturday and the run on Sunday.

“The form is available on the Festival website at www.pickering60sfestival.co.uk and I can be contacted with any queries at jpearsonhowie@btinternet.com .”