Rochdale Borough Council Festival of Ideas

New Festival of Ideas announced for the borough of Rochdale

A new six-day festival will be staged in the borough of Rochdale in 2024, accompanying the official re-opening of Rochdale Town Hall in March 2024.

The Rochdale Borough Festival of Ideas will run from March 4-9, promising a showcase of creativity, innovation and performance around the themes of imagine, create, and discover.

The line-up is yet to be confirmed but visitors can expect visual arts, music, live performances, interactive installations and lots more, as originality and imagination is celebrated. Taking inspiration from the borough’s rich heritage whilst remaining future focussed, there will be a blend of hands-on and digital programming and many events will be free to attend.

The re-launched Rochdale Town Hall will be one of a host of festival venues across the borough. Its major restoration has been funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund and Rochdale Borough Council.

Councillor Janet Emsley, the council’s cabinet member for equity, safety and reform, said the new festival will be an opportunity to be inspired, engaged, and entertained: “Rochdale Borough Festival of Ideas will provide a platform for curious minds to explore and discover, with lots of family friendly events running throughout and a dedicated schools programme. The borough is a place for innovation, from the first co-op to the new Atom Valley. This festival will raise the profile and reputation of Rochdale borough across the UK arts, culture and events scene.

“I hope it will raise cultural ambition, local pride and attract new audiences too. Importantly, the festival will include a momentous moment to celebrate the re-opening of Rochdale Town Hall, a hub for ideas and conversation as it throws open its doors and becomes accessible to all.”

While planning is well under way, the festival is recruiting an artistic associate to work alongside the organising team. The freelance role will involve helping with creative programming and working with organisations, communities and artists to help stage the festival.