New festival celebrates Annan's history

Members of the History Town Committee
Lisa Paton

An action-packed programme of historical delights heralds the launch of Annan the History Town’s new Festival!

This exciting community-led initiative aims to celebrate Annan and its rich historical tapestry, featuring artists and performers from all walks of life, united in raising the town's profile as a must-visit destination. Drawing insight and direction from the recently commissioned Studioarc Feasibility Study, the History Town Committee have been exploring ways to showcase the town’s historical and cultural assets, making Annan more appealing to visitors and local folk alike. 

Annan the History Town Chairman, Richard Brodie reveals the inspiration behind this exciting new History Festival:

“Annan has always given visitors a warm welcome. We have quirky independent shops and a veritable smorgasbord of eating places, but we would like to give our guests more experiences to encourage them to linger a little bit longer in our historic town. Our History Festival will bring our High Street and courtyards alive with stories and songs of yesteryear. Our fascinating exhibitions are also on seven days per week and our Super Saturday events will be great for families.”

Driven by the desire to promote a brighter future for Annan, the Summer Festival has opened doors to numerous collaborations, resulting in an inspirational and eclectic Festival programme.

Festival Co-Director Kathleen Cronie tells us more:

“Officially launching on July 17th, the Festival will run until mid-September, tempting guests with a range of stimulating, entertaining and thought-provoking experiences, and a huge helping of fun besides! Singers and storytellers, artists and poets, will converge in various venues, brightening up the summer with a colourful splash of culture and theatre.”

So what can Festival guests look forward to over the next couple of months? Senses will be stirred with a walk on the dark side with a Mostly Ghostly tour and the story of a Haaf net fisherman, who's spent a lifetime mastering his craft, share his passion for the old traditions and the importance of keeping them alive. An epic battle is played out through an inclusive multisensory story, while Living History performers transport visitors back in time with flair and authenticity. Exhibitions will raise awareness of local people and past times, while costumed characters enthral guests on Festival Super Saturdays, with appearances from Lady Florence Dixie to the great Bard himself. You might even spot the infamous ‘bodysnatcher’ William Hare lurking in a dark close!

The Festival is the start of what the Committee hopes will be a positive new chapter in Annan’s unique and compelling story, an innovative community project, designed to enliven Annan's past, building on successes and creating a brighter future for the town.

For further details about the Festival and the various events, visit the Annan History Town Facebook page