STARS SET TO SHINE AT HARDWICK LIVE…

The countdown is on as the North East’s biggest live music festival gets ready to roar into action this weekend.

Hardwick Live will take over Hardwick Hall Hotel, Sedgefield, this Saturday and Sunday 18 and 19 August, with a host of musical favourites set to take to the stage.

On Saturday, Ricky Wilson and the Kaiser Chiefs will lead a star-studded line up which also features Vintage Trouble, Ash, Jake Shears and Lucy Spraggan, along with up and coming acts like Dansi, Wild Front, Beth Macari and Social Room.

And on Sunday, Happy Mondays will headline a packed day of music featuring Shed Seven, Echo & the Bunnymen, Feeder, Public Image Ltd, Heather Small and Melanie C alongside a huge support programme including The Cuban Brothers, New York Brass Band, Smoove & Turrell and Detroit Social Club.

While the big focus will be on the main stage, there will be no shortage of entertainment across the grounds of the County Durham Hotel throughout the weekend.

For those looking to catch a DJ set, some of the industry’s biggest names will be mixing up a storm over the weekend.

Danny Rampling, Brandon Block and Alex P will be taking charge on Saturday, while Graeme Park and Greg Wilson will both appear on Sunday.

Other DJs set to hit the decks during the two days include Linden C, James Parker, Michael Johnson, Pete Wharrier, Rob Oxley, Tony Hutchinson, Steve Butler and Keith Martin.

New to this year’s event are four pop-up feasting experiences which will involve top local chefs Terry Laybourne, Marcus Bennett and Chris Finnigan.

Hosted inside an exclusive marquee, the chefs will each prepare a three-course meal in a 30-minute cooking demonstration, before the food is dished-up to ticket-holding guests.

There are four of these events – two per day – and access is by advance tickets only, priced at £30 for lunchtime dining and £35 per person for dinner. All include a glass of Taittinger.

Festival-goers will also be able to purchase food and drinks from various food stalls featuring a variety of cuisines including Chinese, Thai, Mexican, Caribbean, Indian, burgers, falafels, fish and chips and hog roast along with vegan, vegetarian and gluten free options.

As Hardwick Live is an event aimed at the whole family, there will be no shortage of children’s entertainment this year.

Along with a designated children’s area and various workshops running throughout the weekend, performances from Lee Kyle on Saturday and Howard Read on Sunday will be keeping the kids entertained.

“After months and months of hard work and preparation, we are just a handful of days away from what will be our biggest Hardwick Live yet,” said John Adamson, owner of Ramside Estates which runs Hardwick Live.

“We have two huge days with an incredible line up this year, and with added extras like our pop up feasting experiences, we are confident of a fantastic weekend.

“There is still time to buy tickets in advance, with availability each day and weekend passes, but we’d urge anyone who is still wanting to purchase to do so now before it’s too late.”

All tickets bought after noon on Monday 13 August will be available for collection at the box office on the day. Parking tickets will be available on the day, priced at £5 each cash only.

For tickets and further information, visit the website: www.hardwicklive.co.uk