About Penkhull Festival
Established in 1966, Penkhull Festival is an annual festival of music and art, taking place in Stoke-on-Trent each September. The festival's home is the historic Domesday village of Penkhull, surrounded by the rolling countryside of the Staffordshire moorlands.
Performers in recent years have included Peter Black, Julien Van Mellaerts, Jocelyn Freeman, the National Youth Chamber Choir, Greg Hallam, Simon Callaghan, Huw Wiggin, Oliver Wass, Robert Max, the Tippett Quartet, Emma Abbate, Fenella Humphreys, Robert Thompson and Voces8.
We hope you enjoy exploring the website, and look forward to welcoming you to one of our events.
New Festival President
We are delighted to welcome guitarist and Radio 3 presenter Tom McKinney as our new Penkhull Festival President.
Born in Penkhull, Tom has gone on to pursue a highly successful career as a performer and broadcaster. He presents Essential Classics on BBC Radio 3: he also presents their live concert series throughout the country, including at Hanley's Victoria Hall.
"Although I moved away from Penkhull to study in Manchester when I was 18, my parents still live in the village and most of my school friends stayed in the area. That gives me a good excuse to come back at least a couple of times every month, now with my two young daughters, and returning is always a pleasure because Penkhull is such a special place. Those of us born here, or who’ve wisely moved to the village, know that it’s a charmed life to be based in this idyllic pocket on the top of the hill. Up in the clouds above the sprawling chaos of Stoke, Penkhull moves at a more relaxed pace. It’s a close community, but also an open and welcoming one, and its residents are quite rightly proud of what’s on their doorstep.
So although I was certainly taken by surprise and very flattered, it was a straightforward ‘yes’ when the committee asked me to become the President of Penkhull Festival of Music and Art. And it’s now with real excitement that I
look forward to being with you in September for the 2023 Festival.
I want to say a huge thank you to our Artistic Director, Dr Chris Brammeld, for putting together a programme that will bring such an impressive list of musicians to St Thomas’s church. These are artists at the top of their game, and you can expect three days of sensational performances, each completely different to the next, and which continues the great legacy of this important local festival.
See you there!"
Penkhull Festival 2023
Thursday 14th - Sunday 17th September
This year, we have a stellar line-up of exquisite music and musicians, with truly something for everyone.
Thursday 14th September
Friday 15th September
Equinox Saxophone Ensemble
Saturday 16th September
Lunchtime vocal recital followed by afternoon tea
Mimi Doulton (soprano) and Olivia Jageurs (harp)
Saturday 16th September
Vivaldi's Four Seasons by candlelight
Karen Stephenson (cello)
Chris Brammeld (conductor)
Click here to read the artistic director's introduction to the 2023 festival.