Houghton Feast 2016 set to get underway

Countdown to Houghton Feast Festival at Bernard Gilpin Primary School.
Coun Anne Lawson, Chair of Houghton Feast Steering Group
Countdown to Houghton Feast Festival at Bernard Gilpin Primary School. Coun Anne Lawson, Chair of Houghton Feast Steering Group
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Action will be called as a historic Wearside community celebration event starts tomorrow.

The 10-day Houghton Feast begins in the town with its traditional opening ceremony at The Broadway tomorrow at 7pm.

Young members of Houghton Rugby Cub taking part in Saturdays Houghton Feast Parade.

Young members of Houghton Rugby Cub taking part in Saturdays Houghton Feast Parade.

The theme of this year’s festival is “Hollywood and moving pictures”, with a number of events relating to films and television set to take place.

The festival is steeped in tradition and has been running since the 12th Century as a two-day fair, which was extended to ten days in 1967.

It will combine a unique mix of traditional and modern activities that will bring together performances from community and voluntary organisations, as well as professionally staged events.

Coun Anne Lawson, who is chairman of the Houghton Feast Steering Group and represents Shiney Row ward, said: “Houghton Feast incorporates everything that is good about a festival.

Countdown to Houghton Feast Festival at Bernard Gilpin Primary School.

Countdown to Houghton Feast Festival at Bernard Gilpin Primary School.

“It has history, tradition, music, performances, colour and celebration.

“Most importantly, it engages the local community.

“We are delighted that once again we have been able to work in fantastic partnership with local schools and community groups, which have all played a key role in the festival.”

Houghton Pipe Band will perform alongside dancers from Zazz at tomorrow night’s opening event, with the Feast illuminations set to be turned on by Mayor of Sunderland, Coun Alan Emmerson.

Countdown to Houghton Feast Festival at Bernard Gilpin Primary School.

Countdown to Houghton Feast Festival at Bernard Gilpin Primary School.

Saturday sees the traditional carnival parade take place in the town, beginning in Newbottle Street at 2pm and making its way to Dairy Lane.

A number of vintage steam vehicles are set to be part of the procession.

Houghton Heritage Society is holding a “Hollywood-le-Spring exhibition” at B&M Bargains on the same day, featuring Houghton-raised actress Linden Travers, while the town’s Methodist Church will play host to a collection of Coronation Street memorabilia from 10am to 1pm.

The famous roasting of the ox activity will be held in Rectory Field on Monday, taking place at 4pm, with proceeds from the sale of sandwiches set to help out charities in the area.

Other events will be held across the town, with the annual funfair at Rectory Field open to visitors, until Sunday, October 16.