First YorkLife Festival supports local entertainers as city recovers from pandemic

The first ever YorkLife festival hit the streets of York this April, celebrating and supporting local talent in the wake of the Covid pandemic.  

The free event ran over the first weekend of April and was hosted by council-owned company, Make It York.  

The festival featured over 30 different acts including musicians, performers and comedians – and aimed to support the city’s recovery from the Covid pandemic.  

Harqirit Boparai, from York Music Venue Network, who managed the main “YorkLive” stage, said: “It has been really difficult, the past couple of years. 

“The pandemic really made us more determined and focused on trying to keep putting on good music in York, whether that’s with local bands or touring acts.” 

Headlining the main stage were York-based band The Howl & The Hum, who were supported by a host of other local talent.  

Visitors could also take part in a range of other activities, such as circus workshops, face painting, or learning about the Viking history of York.  

Antony Atlee, from the JORVIK centre, who also goes by his Viking name “Aelfric”, thinks it is important that people learn about the city’s rich history.  

He said: “It’s obviously good, with YorkLife festival, to look at the past of York – it helps bring people into the city. 

“I think that’s one of the greatest things about York itself, it’s one of the oldest, most historical cities in the country.” 

YorkLife Festival-goers gathered on Parliament Street

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