Maddy Prior has been lead singer of the legendary Steeleye Span band for over 40 years. She therefore knows just how difficult it is to earn a living from music and the arts, particularly for those in remote areas such as N Cumbria where she lives.
In 2012, Maddy inaugurated the Stepping Stones music festival in her local market town of Brampton, which has over the last 3 years established a reputation for delivering high quality performances and a wide variety of musical styles for all the family. In 2014 we held the festival in the charming and intimate setting of the ruins at Kirklinton Hall which we now consider to be our home.
Maddy now wants to use the expertise that she has built up over the course of her long career to help nurture and develop up-and-coming musical talent by providing opportunities for new artists to perform alongside more established bands at future festivals, and if funding allows to offer them additional support, training and potentially recording opportunities.
Kickstarter is an online crowdfunding tool which is designed to help organisations raise money for creative projects. Those unfamiliar with Kickstarter may wish to read the article in The Guardian of 4th Nov . Our campaign is seeking to raise a minimum of £5000 over the next 30 days to enable these objectives to be realised both for the festival and potentially to support artists at other concerts to be held at Kirklinton Hall during the summer season.
Those pledging £50 or more will be invited to choose rewards appropriate to the amount given.
North Cumbria is a wild and beautiful county but is also an area of high rural deprivation and one of the additional benefits of holding a festival near the NW Scottish Border is to attract more people to this sparsely populated but largely unspoilt part of England and encourage visitors to spend their money here, thereby strengthening the local economy which has suffered during the recent years of austerity.
Even if you aren't able to attend the festival in June to experience this remarkable week-end of live music, by making even a small pledge you will be helping Britain retain its reputation for being one of the most vibrant and culturally enriching places in the world to live. So please do spread the word about this Kickstarter campaign amongst your friends and encourage them to visit the Carlisle area for the festival on 12th and 13th June.
We look forward very much to welcoming all donors into the Stepping Stones family - you won’t regret it!