ORGANISERS of County Durham’s Brass music festival can still make its return next month thanks to its largely outdoor programme and social distancing arrangements.

Despite the Government delaying Stage 4 of its roadmap out of lockdown, Durham County Council’s plans for the five-day music festival comply with the current rules.

This means that families and music fans can still look forward to performances from Richard Hawley and the NASUWT Riverside Band, Field Music, The Trevor Horn Band, CBeebies Band Jam star YolanDa Brown and a whole host of lively street bands from Wednesday, July 14 to Sunday, July 18.

The council said the safety of the public, artists, event staff and volunteers was its top priority when planning the festival’s return and is why the majority of acts are now performing outside this year with social distancing measures in place.

To support this, part of a £724,000 Culture Recovery Fund Grant from Arts Council England will be used to set up an outdoor stage at Durham Racecourse for three days of free live music.

The size of the site allows for social distancing and friendly event staff will be on hand to help ensure it is observed.

For Richard Hawley and NASWUT Riverside Band’s gig at Durham Cathedral and Field Music’s performance at Redhills, bookings will allow for social distancing.

More tickets will be released if Government restrictions are eased in the weeks leading up to the festival.

Cllr Elizabeth Scott, Cabinet member for economy and partnerships at Durham County Council, said: “Keeping people safe has been our priority throughout the pandemic and has been a key consideration when planning our festival and events programme this year.

“By monitoring Government guidance closely and taking advice from our public health team, we have organised a safe and inclusive festival, allowing people of all ages to enjoy a largely free and outdoor programme of world-class entertainment.

“Furthermore, our community outreach programme will bring the joy of brass to schools and care homes across the county, with an exciting programme of exclusive performances and workshops.

“Obviously, the festival will be a little different to previous years, but thanks to robust planning and an amazing line-up, it will still deliver the atmosphere we all know and love.”

Tickets, including for the free three-day outdoor concerts at Durham Racecourse, and details of the event are available at