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Galtres Festival hoping for repeat performance
THE team behind Galtres Parkland Festival say they are delighted with the decision that saw Duncombe Park host the event for the first time this year.
Festival director James Houston said the site in Helmsley was “perfect for what we are trying to do”, and the first year at the new venue could not have gone better.
Despite teething problems with a new cashless payment system and lighting on the way to the riverside campsite at the festival over the bank holiday weekend, organisers hope to return next year.
Duncombe Park was selected as the venue over two other possible sites – at Rawcliffe Country Park in York and Folly Wood at Huby. The previous site in Crayke had been plagued with problems caused by wet ground and muddy car parks.
After this year’s success, James said they were certain Duncombe Park was the right choice.
“We are unbelievably pleased with how it went, and I don’t know how we would have done it in either of the other sites.
“In Crayke, we were up and down the same patch of land and it got very muddy. But there’s so much space up here, there’s no pressure on the land.”
James said he believed the festival will have helped traders in Helmsley as well, with a free shuttle bus into the town centre full on almost every journey.
“We know that we channelled many hundreds of people into Helmsley, and accommodation was booked up well in advance.
“We are going to be talking to Helmsley In Business and working with them, not against them, because we want to make sure we are benefitting their businesses.”
Chris Garnett, of Hunters of Helmsley deli, is secretary of the Helmsley In Business group. He said that while they served many festival goers in his shop he did not think the town had been any busier than normal for a bank holiday weekend.
Many of Helmsley’s normal bank holiday customers stayed away with fears the town would be too busy with festival goers, he felt.
“People were frightened they wouldn’t be able to park, but they needn’t have been because it was very well organised.
“I don’t think Galtres could have done any more to bring people to businesses in Helmsley,” he said.
“We all want Helmsley to do well, and this puts us on the map.”
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