Friday 14th July
Camping is open from noon - Book for the weekend here
Get into the festival mood with some gentle Friday afternoon music from 2pm.
Friday evening in the Martyrs' Marquee
Chuck is a Folk Punk Protest writer hailing from Brighton. Chuck's guitar playing extends far beyond the contemporary and expected style of an acoustic guitarist. The indomitable lead singer of revolutionary punk band Echo and The Beats whose debut album 'Mood Swings' helped them secure several prestige festival slots including Brighton Pride, the UK's largest LGBTQ pride festival, LFest, The Alternative Escape, Something Else Somewhere Else, Surplus, Rockstock and now Tolpuddle.
A classically-trained violinist and poet whose boyhood love of Run DMC, Beastie Boys and Gangstarr led him to create a unique kind of string-heavy hip hop music he refers to as Violinica.
24-year-old singer/songwriter/barman from Southampton UK. New single 'No Show' OUT NOW!
British Cajun band bringing you traditional toe-tapping Lousiana dance tunes.
Smashing their way into the UK folk punk scene since 2013, Black Water County bring an energetic live show of stout quaffing, banjo breaking and tin whistle mangling original music, along with trads and shanties that have been given a good kick up the arse and a slap around the face.
They have two EP releases under their belt: Welcome To The Black Water County (2013) and The Fellowship Of The Craic (2014).
Tolpuddle Radical Cinema
The Tolpuddle Martyrs' Festival has a sweet enclosed corner just for kids with a programme of delightful entertainment.
The children's area in teh village is open for a range of activities - check out the programme here
Visit the original chapel where at least five of the Martyrs worshipped. It is undergoing renovation to creat a new quiet space in the village.
Friday 14th July evening
Tolpuddle Village Hall
From 7pm - but get there early if you want to be sure to get in
Ballad for Southwell
Fringe Tent 7pm
Chair: Peter Hughes Unite South West Regional Secretary, Adrian Weir Assistant National Secretary CTUF, Prof Keith Ewing and Christine Blower Workplace 2020 lead a discussion about what work and employment rights should look like in 2020.
Saturday 15th July
POA Hke - Dorchester Prison to Tolpuddle
Prison Officers are banned from taking industrial action and they plan a Hike from Dorchester to Tolpuddle to make the case for the right to strike and highlight the dangerous conditions in our prisons. Meet at the coach layby opposite museum at 10am. Travel by coach to Dorchester Prison with a slow steedy walk back to Tolpuddle (takes approx 3-4 hours). More here
Open Mic - Poetry
Dave Toomer and Bob Johnson welcome budding and expereinced poets to the open-mic stage.
Hear the story of the Tolpuddle Women told by members of Equity. Performances will take place on the main stage at noon, 2pm and 4pm. Listen out for the Town Crier and give them your support! Also, look out for their random acts of theatre around the festival site. You are sure to be surprised and entertained.
Open Mic - Tolpuddle has Talent
1pm to approx 4.30pm
Big John Reed runs the open mic. No advance booking, just turn up and put your name on the board.
Talking in Tents
The list of discussions is being developed and details below are bound to change with some speakers still to confirm attendance. We will keep the web site up-to-date so watch this space and double-check the times when you get to the Festival.
10.30-11.30 Fringe Tent
Crisis in Education
Cuts in school budgets, the fragmentation and privatisation of the school system, teacher shortages, Further Education funding, the impact of student fees and the pay cap: just some of the issues facing education.
11.00-12.30 Martyrs' Marquee
Supporting and teaching refugees
Members from the Hamburg and Bremen state branches of the German Education Union - GEW - will give a brief introduction to the challenges inside and outside the education systems. Teachers from Bremen will report on the Education International funded Project 'Teacher's Organising for Quality Education for Refugees'. They will be joined by representatives from South West refugees support organisations.
11.30-12.30 Rear Garden Marquee
The effect of the Russian Revolution on British Trade unionism
Tolpuddle Radical History School and Morning Star session will discuss the impact of the Russian Revolution on British trade unions with Chris Reed Warwick University, John Callow GMB, Liz Payne-Ahmadi and others tbc
12-1pm Fringe Tent
Will robots do all the jobs?
Are we on the brink of a new revolution in automation? What will the advance of robotics mean for jobs and unions? Chair: Kev Terry with Kate Bell TUC Head of Economic and Social Affairs and Tim Roache GMB General Secretary
1-2pm Rear Garden Tent
Young people and mental health
A South West Youth Parliament session with Finbarr Sheeham Mental Health Adviser to students at Bath Spa University (tbc) and Antonia Dixey Chief Executive of The Patnership People
1-2.30pm Martyrs' Marquee
Brexit and Trump: are we heading for a climate crash?
Chair: Phil Pearson with Clive Lewis MP, Bill Adams Yorkshire and HUmberside TUC Regional Secretary and Molly Scott-Cato South West Green MEP
1.30-2.30 Fringe Tent
Women and Brexit
How should we respond to the risk to women's rights from Brexit? Chair: Joanne Kaye with Clare Moody MEP, Catherine Rayner, barrister and Jo Stevens MP
3-4.30pm Martyrs' Marquee
Young workers and unions
Learn about and discuss the TUC's major new initiative to communicate better with young workers and set a path to membership. With Jo Galazka Unite Organiser, Clare Coatman TUC Young Workers Project Leader and Carl Roper TUC National Organiser
3-4pm Fringe Tent
Great Jobs Agenda
How can we win a new deal for workers? With Paul Nowak TUC Deputy General Secretary, Dave Ward CWU General Secretary, Ines Lage, South West TUC Policy and Campaigns Support Officer and Mark Serwotka PCS General Secretary (tbc).
4-5pm Rear Garden Marquee
Young peole and politics
A South West Youth Parliament session with Shakira Martin NUS President and Abi Wilkinson Guardian jounralist
4.30-5.30 Fringe Tent
Options for unions and Labour
Mobilising for an alternative now with Owen Tudor Head of TUC Europe and International Department, Claire Moody South West Labour MEP and Thangham Debbonaire MP
Saturday 11am and 1pm
Meet at the sculpture for a popular guided walk trhough the village with Tony Gould local resident and former National Agricultural Officer for Unite.
Stall holders are invited to have their say by Tim Lezard
UNIZONE - under the trees
Saturday 11-4 – print making with the Bristol Print Collective
Saturday and Sunday – send a message of support to your Public Service Champions
Folk duo Tim and Sue Brine sing at 11.30. Tim is a descent of James Brine one of the Tolpuddle Martyrs.
Terry Quinney and Milly Riquelme do Cuban jazz at 2pm
Mike Walford sings at 4pm from his new album Footprints Shorelines Highways
Plus other mystery guests and an opportunity to buy the limited edition UNISON at Tolpuddle print
This year Unite is supporting an organisation called Aspire to Live, based down in Plymouth. The organisation is helping young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and teenagers/young adults with learning difficulties gain skills in the hopes of finding employment. They’re currently aiming at get them all passes for the GCSE in English so that some can be taken on as apprentices. They have all been writing their essays on Tolpuddle. Diane Bibby, and some of the learners will be at Tolpuddle on the Sunday, where they will be selling Unite t-shirts/hats and all proceeds will go to their learning centre.
Skimmity Hitchers perform in what has become a favourite slot for Tolpuddle regulars.
Denizens of Dorset, weirdos of the West Country, they are a band of brothers, blaggers and badgers. They play old-fashioned Scrumpy and Western live music with a modern edge. Everyone is welcome to dance and laugh and sing along but be prepared for much sauciness, banter and barracking too, for 'tis all part of the show...
From about 7pm Steve White leads an acoustic free-for-all in the Fringe Tent
Ex-circus clown and fire eater Rory is a one-man soulband, poet and storyteller, singing his own unique upbeat dance stories. A modern travelling troubadour using tap shoes, acappella, harmonica, guitar, trombone, spoons, finger cymbals, bandorea, djembe and various percussion instruments!
A 25-year-old performer of 19th Century Industrial Revolution broadside ballads and Lancashire dialect work songs. After volunteering at Chetham's Library and the Working Class Movement Library, Jennifer completed an Advanced Diploma in Local History at Oxford University.
Fabulous comedian, speaker, writer and challenger of Tories, Francesca is sure to be a hit at Tolpuddle. Martinez has become a respected social commentator, speaking at meetings and demos across the UK, as well as being a key part of the People's Assembly Against Austerity. She has toured with her show, What The **** Is Normal?! and plans a documentary and book in her search for a 'normal' person. She has cerebral palsy but thinks "wobbly" is a lot cooler.
Hailing from all over the UK, Zoe and the Baskets play high-energy, lyric-drive, indie pop.
Their unique brand of folk noir/gypsy jazz/sea shanty and their all screaming, all sweating, swaggering stage spectacle is bound to close the Saturday evening show well. Their music meanders from sea-soaked waltz to Italian tarantella, from brassy funeral march-esque lament to weep along Klezmar knees up, from chain-gang holler to rag-time finger snap. Skipping through the dark side of anything that makes you want to dance, steeped in melodrama and usually with not a small amount of tongue in cheek.
Sunday 16th July
St John's Church
11am Festival Service and songs of praise - all welcome
10am-4.30pm Coffee, cakes, salad lunches and cream teas
10.45am Robb Johnson opens the main stage line-up
Gaz Brookfield with Ben Wain
Gaz Brookfield is a solo acoustic musician based in Bristol. Since winning Acoustic magazine's 2010 Singer Songwriter of the year, he has spent his time on the road, touring the UK and Europe. He joins up with Ben Wain to open this year's Main Stage programme. They may play West Country Song.
They have the originality and skill to invite comparison with the most celebrated harmony duos. Belinda and Heidi’s powerful, deeply moving and soulful performances are infused with an honesty and empathy that will disarm the hardest of heart. Their latest album Shadows has earned them a place in Mojo’s Top 10 Folk Albums of 2016 for the third time and their third BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nomination for ‘Best Duo’.
Speakers including: Kev Terry South West TUC Chair, Mary Bousted TUC President, Shakira Martin NUS President and others.
The band’s reputation goes before them. Their passion for music is matched by their social conscience. The six-piece band from Glasgow want to inject a bit of Folk’n’Roll into your soul. The musical style of The Wakes music is influenced by Guthrie, Springsteen and Dylan but also traditional folk groups like The Dubliners and The Corries and contemporary bands such as The Clash and The Pogues. The Wakes’ lyrics are honest, evocative and compassionate.
Methodist minister reminds us of the legacy of the Martyrs before peole gather on the street to march through the village.
3.15pm Speakers including Nigel Costley South West TUC Regional Secretary, Frances O'Grady TUC General Secretary and Jeremy Corbyn MP Leader of the Labour Party.
The Mekons are a British-American rock band. Formed in the late 1970s as an art collective, they are one of the longest-running and most prolific of the first-wave British punk rock bands.
A random collective will perform and close the Main Stage in true Tolpuddle spirit.
All the way from Tasmania, a welcome return to Tolpuddle for this great singer-songwriter
Abi Rich is a young singer songwriter from Bridport. Abi played at local We Shall Overcome events last year and is building a reputation as someone to watch for the future.
Stevie Simpson has been playing regularly at motorcycle rallies and festivals all over the UK since 2000 receiving some great reviews and picking up new fans at every gig.
Maddy Carty was decribed as: “A strikingly sophisticated and self contained talent Maddy Carty's commanding yet delicate vocal is serviced by original songs of depth and commitment.”
Gavin Martin, Music Journalist. She joins forces with Tolpuddle regulars Steve White and the Protest Family.
Farrell Family are a traditional band from Plymouth and East Cornwall who specialise in songs from the English, Irish, Scottish and Cornish radical traditions.
Methodist Chapel Festival Service
The traditional end of rally service with Revd Inderjit Bhogal former president of the Methodist Conference and instigator of UK Cities of Sanctuary.