Leicester Riverside Festival

A TWO-day family festival of music and fun on the banks of the River Soar is set to take place this summer.

The annual Leicester Riverside Festival has grown into one of the city's biggest free events, bringing live music, family activities and workshops and all the fun of the waterways to the heart of the city.

The Leicester Riverside Festival will take place on the mile straight of the river, Western Boulevard and in Bede Park, Leicester, on June 5 and 6. It is run by Leicester City Council and sponsored by local social landlord Riverside and ECHG.

During the festival, brightly-decorated narrowboats will take pride of place along the river, while on land, arts and crafts, displays and performers will entertain visitors. Some of Leicester's top bands, including Out of Karma, M48, Dead Slow and The Deap People, will perform.

For the first time, From Dusk To Dawn magazine will also host a fringe festival bringing three nights of live music to venues along Braunstone Gate.

In addition, visitors can enjoy falconry displays, art workshops and a street market, as well as BMX displays, youth activities and a mini cinema. Younger visitors will also be treated to puppet shows, a mobile pet zoo, circus skills and a range of street performers.

Decorated boats will parade along the river, accompanied by live traditional jazz, and there will also be activities involving boats ranging from coracles and canoes to a floating tea shop.

This year's festival also marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Tom Rolt, one of the founding fathers of the Inland Waterways Association, who in the 1940s helped kick-start boating for pleasure with his book charting his fascinating journeys along Britain's canals and rivers.

Look out for the Heart Angels at the Alfresco area too!

A full-colour brochure containing details of all the events in the Riverside Festival is available from the Tourist Information Centre in Town Hall Square, as well as libraries, leisure centres and museums or by emailing festivals@leicester.gov.uk

For further information visit www.leicester.gov.uk/riversidefestival