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Music festival to hit high notes as big names unveiled

It’s one of the biggest musical events in the region, and Hardwick Festival 2022 may be the best line-up yet.

It’s not surprising the return of Hardwick Festival last year, after a pandemic-induced absence, was huge cause for celebration.

Being able to mix with people in a party atmosphere, listen to live music, enjoy top DJs and generally soak up the fun was something that everyone had sorely missed.

The one question on everyone’s lips was: ‘how will the organisers top this in future years?’

Well, the question has now been answered – and it undoubtedly looks as if they have.

Topping the bill on day one this year at the event, based at Hardwick Hall Hotel, near Sedgefield, County Durham, on August 20 are Stereophonics, an announcement which has had fans practically apoplectic with excitement.

The news came hot on the heels of the release of the band’s eighth number one album Oochya! and the start of their UK arena tour.

One of Britain’s most acclaimed live acts, Stereophonics have sold more than ten million records worldwide, and headlined huge events over the years, including Glastonbury, V Festival and Reading and Leeds.

Their place at Hardwick Festival cements the event as a really important date on the entertainment calendar with an incredible initial response to early ticket sales.

Not to be outdone, Sunday, August 21 will see a step back in time to the late 70s, when The Specials will headline.

One of Britain’s first multi-racial bands and pioneers of two-tone, the group show no signs of slowing down in their fourth decade together with the release of their latest album Protest Songs – 1924-2012.

Getting the band to play at Hardwick is a huge coup as they are only playing a handful of gigs this year, so it really does offer an opportunity to enjoy such hits as Too Much Too Young, Ghost Town, Free Nelson Mandela and Do Nothing.

With an event like Hardwick, where it is a full day (or even a weekend!) out, then the rest of the line-up also adds to the occasion.

On Saturday, performers include Jake Bugg, American blues singer Seasick Steve and North East band The Redroom, while appearing on Sunday, so far, are BRIT Award winners Becky Hill and Ella Eyre [pictured, below right], The Proclaimers and Oh My God! It’s The Church.

The festival has also become a huge gathering place for some of the biggest DJ names and this year is no exception.

Danny Tenaglia, one of house music’s greatest mavericks, will be performing one of his mammoth sets, as will German-born Tino Schmidt, better known as Purple Disco Machine.

Brandon Block, Rob Oxley, Pete Wharrier, Liam Carty and Kevin Sanderson are also on the bill, as part of a 20-plus line-up of the very best national and international DJs.

The soul tent will also be home to a whole range of performers across the weekend, and add into the mix comedy performances, a children’s arena, a street food village, fun fair and event, and an opportunity to show off your karaoke skills, and you’ve got all the ingredients for an unforgettable event.

John Adamson, who owns Hardwick Hall, certainly thinks so.

He says: “Stereophonics and The Specials are hugely influential performers, whose impact on the music scene can’t be ignored.

“Between them, they have produced some of the most memorable songs of previous decades, and I’m sure they’ll put on an incredible show over the two days.

“With five stages of music across the site, we have some excellent names still to be announced, and it’s sure to be a brilliant weekend for the whole family to enjoy.”

Day tickets cost £69 for adults, £35 for young people aged between 12 and 18, and £15 for children aged between 5 and 12.

All under-18s must be accompanied by an adult over 25.

Camping and glamping passes are available for those who want to immerse themselves in the festival experience.

There are also a number of hospitality packages available, which include dining in real style at the event.