Roll up for Musical Mystery Tour in Hertford this August Bank Holiday weekend

The launch of this year's Musical Mystery Tour in Hertford [Picture: Steve Beeston Photography]

The launch of this year's Musical Mystery Tour in Hertford [Picture: Steve Beeston Photography]

Steve Beeston

Roll up, roll up for Hertford’s annual Musical Mystery Tour this August Bank Holiday weekend.

Big 10 will play the Hertford Music Festival 2017 Musical Mystery Tour Big 10 will play the Hertford Music Festival 2017 Musical Mystery Tour

Rob Guinn, Kev Saunders, Steve Beeston and the rest of the Hertford Music Festival team, including some new recruits, have been working on this year’s Musical Mystery Tour.

The annual event will once again take place in Hertford over the August Bank Holiday weekend on Sunday, August 27, when literally hundreds of artists will be playing at around 40 venues in the county town.

As regulars will know, the Musical Mystery Tour is now thoroughly established as the biggest musical event in Hertford’s calendar.

It is a frenzy of live music of every kind from classical and jazz to rock, reggae, folk, indie and punk, running from lunchtime until bedtime and all free of charge.

Big 10 will play the Hertford Music Festival 2017 Musical Mystery Tour Big 10 will play the Hertford Music Festival 2017 Musical Mystery Tour

“I’m very pleased to announce that for the second year running Hertford Planning Service is our headline sponsor,” said joint festival chairman Kev Saunders.

“The event has evolved to become a huge undertaking that’s only possible with their support and that of our other sponsors, as well as that of Hertford’s incredible and evidently inexhaustible pool of musical talent and, of course, the people of the town.”

The huge task of scheduling what amounted last year to more than 240 individual performances by over 600 individual artists is now well under way.

Kev added: “As always, the stage in the back courtyard of The White Hart is geographically and metaphorically the centre of things.

“We wondered at first how we could top last year’s headliner, former Sex Pistol Glen Matlock, but I’m certain we’ve got a band more than worthy of the job.

“We’re making The White Hart our carnival stage – a sort of Not-in-Notting-Hill-Carnival!

“So it’s bands with loads of brass, bass and party grooves, including Lip Service Brass Band, Trailer Trash Orchestra, The Trash (Clash tribute), The Bleeding Hearts Rhythm and Blues Fan Club, The Trojan Horses, The SGs and to close the show the mighty Big 10 – the magnificent Two Tone/ska tribute band who rocked last year’s Rock at the Castle.”

He added: “During the live part of the show reggae sound system Stone Lion Hi Fi will be spinning roots, dub, ska and lover’s rock and from 8.30pm the Friday Fox DJs take over, spinning feelgood dance music, made for those who refuse to be pigeonholed, defined or restricted by genre.”

Renowned for a huge ska sound, entertaining stage antics and a loyal following, Big 10 are one of the most popular ska acts in the region.

With eight to 10 musicians on stage at gigs, including a brass section, a Big 10 performance is a real treat for the senses.

The relatively new landlord at The White Hart has been part of the Musical Mystery Tour a few times in his former job at The Stonehouse – but he’s now right at the heart of the action.

Manager Steve Walsh said: “it’s great being back in Hertford at the new, much-improved White Hart and all of us in the team are excited about hosting the Musical Mystery Tour’s flagship show.”

• For more on the Hertford Music Festival and the Musical Mystery Tour, visit www.hertfordmusicfestival.co.uk

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