Over the last decade, Greenbelt has been privileged to grow its family, as a new generation of festivals have begun to take root in all corners of the UK – and further afield.
Each of these festivals carries something of Greenbelt’s three-stranded DNA of arts, faith and justice. But the ways in which each festival expresses this family resemblance is importantly different. Because Greenbelt isn’t a franchise, it’s an inspiration.
Blackruthen, nr Perth, Scotland
Our oldest family member, Solas Festival, received some seed funding from Trust Greenbelt in its start-up phase but has since matured into an event that sits proudly at the heart of Scottish cultural life – providing a space that brings together the best artistry, activism and progressive political thinking north of the border each year.
Wild Goose Festival
Hot Springs, NC, USA
Our furthest flung relative, Wild Goose Festival, was born just after Solas, after many discussions at Greenbelt, as visitors from the States would meet with us when over here to plot how to begin something in Greenbelt’s image over there. Eventually their dream came true at the turn of the noughties.
Corrymeela, Ballycastle, Northern Ireland
Carafest saw its first edition at Easter 2017. We were pleased to give a small grant from Trust Greenbelt to help the Corrymeela Community conceive and plan it the year before this. Because of its context, Carafest has a creative focus on reconciliation.
Location TBC, Wales
The latest UK festival to emerge – and a few years now in the planning – is Gwyl Coda, which means ‘rise up’ in Welsh. The exact shape and expression of this new festival is yet to be determined, but it is likely to be more network than central in nature. Gwyl Coda has had some Trust Greenbelt funding to enable it to prepare to launch and shape its vision.
Over a longer period of time, Trust Greenbelt has also given some funding to the SLOT Festival in Poland. Although we have a much looser connection with SLOT the festival was entirely their idea and excited before we knew about it!), we have a real admiration and affection for what they’re doing.