A festival of folk's finest acts gathered together in beautiful leafy parkland for one uplifting summer day of music.
“A great chance to see several of folk's prime movers in one day” The Guardian
Pick of the Week' “The most perfect little one day festival you could imagine” Spiral Earth
Sometime in very early 2008 our love of folk music was so strong that we felt the time had come to add a folk gig to our existing series of family-run outdoor events. 5 years earlier we had dreamed of promoting a Kate Rusby concert at one of our beautiful stately home venues and calling it ‘Underneath the Stars’. This idea gradually expanded until we found ourselves contemplating a one day folk festival. We felt that Hatfield House would be perfect, with its wooded grounds full of ancient oaks, and when the name ‘Folk by the Oak’ came to us it all suddenly fell into place and we knew we had to do it!
Within three very busy and exciting months we’d organised our first folk festival. Six years later we are still enjoying every minute of preparing for Folk by the Oak. It is such a privilege to fill a day with the music we have listened to and loved all our lives and to share it with so many people.
With only 7 sets available and the whole of the folk world open to us, we decided to go with the idea of a “line up of headliners”, so that our audience could experience the most incredible and inspiring musicians of the day in just one afternoon. However, this left little room for the equally talented musicians who are up and coming, and so Adam added the Acorn Stage in 2012, making our event a non-stop concert of folk’s finest performances.
We were keen to associate the event with a charity, and the locally-based Willow Foundation seemed the perfect choice. They work to provide special days out for seriously ill young people, and by donating 50p from each Folk by the Oak ticket sold and their own collections on the day, a fabulous £31,300 has so far been raised through the festival for this great cause.
Although our first priority is the music, the festival is complemented by fine foods, local real ales, potters, knitters, embroiderers, weavers, artists, craftspeople, archers, storytellers, silk painters, circus artists, vintage enthusiasts and many more, and we are grateful to all of them for helping us to create a warm and lively festival atmosphere. We want Folk by the Oak to be a feast for the senses!