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Barking Folk Festival

Barking Folk FestivalThe Barking Folk Festival is one of the key events in our Summer of festivals’ programme.

Saturday 9 June and Sunday 10 June 2018

11am to 4pm (Abbey Green)

4pm to 9.30pm (Abbey Ruins)

A free family festival celebrating the best in English and World folk music and dance plus poetry, street theatre, art and family fun!

English folk group The Unthanks, will headline the Sunday that will be a female led concert exploring the ‘art of protest’ – other exciting acts include award winning singer-songwriter Lucy Ward, folk singer-songwriter Grace Petrie, fiddlesinger and songwriter Nancy Kerr and exciting folk band Stick In The Wheel.

Saturday’s line up includes British folk-punk band Skinny Lister, back by popular demand folk band Beans On Toast, Scottish singer-songwriter Kerri Watt and headlined by high energy punk folk act Ferocious Dog.

Activities include:

  • live music, crafts and carnival workshops
  • crafters and stalls
  • street theatre and circus shows
  • delicious street food

Barking Folk Festival poster (PDF, 1.06 MB)

Barking Folk Festival programme booklet (PDF, 3.69 MB)

Festival locations include:

  • Gathering on the Green - 11am to 4pm
  • Abbey Ruins Live - 4pm to 9.30pm

Grab your free tickets for Saturday and Sunday’s Abbey Ruins Live. Also, upgrade your ticket to get the ultimate Folk VIP package with jump-the-queue entry, a festival picnic with drinks and access to the hospitality area.

Get your tickets now


Parking is available at Bobby Moore Way and London Road Multistorey Car Park.

Local parking charges apply.

Keep up to date with the Barking Folk Festival

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Event sponsors

London City Airport


Notting Hill Genesis

Weston Homes

Gathering on the Green Toggle accordion

Check out this festival location with folkie fun for all the family.


Saturday 9 June

11.25am - Haverfolk

12 noon - The Boxwood Chessmen

1pm - Nemolo

1.35pm - Ellie Rees

2.10pm - Pilgrim’s Dream

2.30pm - Lit 5

2.45pm - Haverfolk

Sunday 10 June

11.30am - Sovicha Children’s Folklore

12 noon - Ukrainian Dance

12.15pm - D Style Dance

12.35pm - Leaping Toads

1pm - Haverfolk

1.35pm - Bhangra Dance

1.55pm - Jordan Dance Academy

2.10pm - The Circle of Protest featuring Lucy Ward, Stick in the Wheel, Grace Petrie and Nancy Kerr

3pm - Emily Mae-Winters

Workshops across the weekend


Saturday 9 June

Bug Bling Craft Workshop - 11am and 2pm

Flying the Nest - 12.15pm and 2.30pm

Mr Alexander’s Travelling Show - 11.45am, 1.30pm and 2.45pm

Storytelling - 11.30am, 1.10pm, 2pm and 3.10pm

11am to 4pm - Percussion Instrument Making Workshop

11am to 4pm - The Rig Music Workshop

11am to 4pm - Spoken not Stirred with Studio 3 Arts

11am to 4pm - Church Tours at St Margaret’s Church

1.30pm to 3.30pm - Crochet Workshop

Watch out for our wonderful Bobbins strollers that will be around at 12.30pm and 2pm!

Sunday 10 June

Fairy Flowers Craft Workshop - 11am and 2pm

Flying the Nest - 12.15pm and 2.30pm

Mr Alexander’s Travelling Show - 11.45am, 1.30pm and 2.45pm

Storytelling - 11.30am, 1.10pm, 2pm and 3.10pm

11am to 4pm - Playful Protest Workshop

11am to 4pm - The Rig Music Workshop

11am to 4pm - Spoken not Stirred with Studio 3 Arts

1.30pm to 4pm – Church Tours at St Margaret’s Church

Keep a look out for our powerful and event fitting Suffragettes strollers that will be around at 1.30pm, 3pm and 5.50pm!

Abbey Ruins Live Toggle accordion

Saturday 9 June - Rebels in the Ruins

3.50pm - Festival Parade

4.05pm - Doozer McDooze

4.55pm - Kerri Watt

5.50pm - Beans On Toast

6.55pm - Skinny Lister

8.15pm - Ferocious Dog

Sunday 10 June - The Art of Protest

3.50pm - Playful Protest Parade

4pm - Barking & Dagenham’s Women’s Anthem

4.15pm - Nancy Kerr

5.05pm - Grace Petrie

6.05pm - Lucy Ward

7.10pm - Stick in the Wheel

8.30pm - The Unthanks

Abbey Ruins Live from 3.50pm is a ticketed event – get your free ticket through Eventbrite for both Saturday and Sunday’s event.

Please note the ticket will not guarantee entry as it will be on a first come first served basis but tickets are required for entry.

We advise visitors come early to avoid disappointment!

Please adhere to our Entry Conditions.

Community projects Toggle accordion

Barking & Dagenham's Women’s Anthem

To mark the centenary year of the women’s vote an anthem has been written by the talented folk singer Lucy Ward for the great women of our borough’s past, present and future. The anthem salutes the past - both the suffragettes who fought for the vote as well as the Ford’s machinists that protested for equal pay.

The anthem stands for everyday women from Barking and Dagenham now and in the future together as one shared voice.

The anthem will be performed on Sunday 10 June at the Barking Folk Festival at 4pm so get your singing voice ready and join in with the chorus.

‘So meet me by the three lamps

and raise your banners high.

Sing for your sisters standing by your side.

For the Abbess and for Annie

all the women who’ve gone by.

They stood for change in this

old town and now so am I.’

Thank you to our community choir, Lucy Ward, Kirsty Martin, Barking Enterprise Centre and Studio 3 Arts.

The Knitting Project

The Ageing Well Programme is a fantastic group that meets weekly enjoying social activities such as bingo and crafts including knitting. The girls of the programme decided to combine their love for knitting and the borough and formed The Knitting Project!

The idea initially was to create dressing for one or two trees in the venue for the Barking Folk Festival, but as time ticked on more knitters joined the party and more trees got a makeover.

To mark the 100th anniversary of suffrage the group decided it would be fitting to dress the Three Lamps, the infamous meeting place for suffragettes in East London. The lamps have been crocheted in the suffragette colours and each ‘granny square’ has been created with love for their grandmothers that won them the vote!

Thank you to all the knitters and artists for their time, their art and their passion!

Access and facilities Toggle accordion


There is no public car parking on site but parking is available at Bobby Moore Way and London Road Multistorey Car Park, only a short walk away from site.

Local parking charges apply (RINGO) for council car parks.

Blue Badge Holders

Within council car parks, Blue Badge holders are entitled to four hours free parking in the disabled designated bays.

We have a number of parking bays reserved for Blue Badge holders who can also park (without restriction) in resident permit bays.

Public Transport

Barking has great transport connections via Barking station which is only a five minute walk from the venue. The station is serviced by District and Hammersmith & City underground lines, National Rail services via C2C and London Overground Gospel Oak to Barking line.


Abbey Green is a relatively flat site on grass with hard standing paths.

The Abbey Ruins is on two levels, with the main entrance point via the Curfew Tower (off Broadway) which services the majority of facilities including a good viewing area and toilets including one accessible toilet and one adult changing area. Steps lead to the lower level where the caterers and the bar is located.


Both sites have toilets, baby change and adult changing areas.

For assistance during the event, please visit the Information Point.

First Aid on site is located near the Information Point.

Families attending are encouraged to visit the Information Point in order to gain a wristband in case children or vulnerable adults become separated from your group.

Local Accommodation

There is no accommodation on site, however, we have a number of local accommodation within walking distance.



Ibis Budget

camp sites

Entry conditions Toggle accordion

Searches including bags will be carried out as you enter the venue.

You can bring:

  • food, or this can be purchased
  • sealed soft drinks or water
  • folding chairs or picnic rugs
  • your ticket, or show on phone

Please do not bring:

  • alcohol or unsealed soft drinks
  • glass
  • BBQs or gazebos
  • weapons, drugs or legal highs
  • uncontrolled or dangerous dogs (please keep dogs on leads)

Official event photography and filming will take place and will be used for all marketing and communication purposes. Photo consent forms will be completed for close-up shots of children. Please contact the Information Point if you have any concerns.

We look forward to welcoming you to our family friendly festival!