A new festival. By George

Liverpool is to stage its first St George’s Day Festival on Sunday, April 21.

The day long event will feature personal appearances of TV character Mike the Knight with historical entertainment provided by the Plantagenet Medieval Society who will recreate the pageantry, excitement and action of medieval combat along with courtly dancing and music.

The focus of the festival, which has been organised to promote the city’s historic St George’s Quarter, will be around St George’s Hall and St John’s Gardens which will also host a fun fair and various themed stalls including a hog-roast.

Dragon inspired Superlambananas will take up residence in Queen Square with activities also planned for Williamson Square at the Liverpool Bandstand including performances by the community choir of the Royal Court.

There will be a host of indoor fun too at the World Museum, Walker Art Gallery and St George’s Hall ranging from medieval arts workshops and story-telling to costume dressing and a knight’s trail.

Children are being invited to attend the FREE event in fancy dress on the theme of Knights, Dragons and Princesses with prizes for under-10s and under-5s.

Those attending in fancy dress will also be able to enjoy discounts at restaurants in Queen Square and discounted car-parking at Queen Square Car Park.

Liverpool’s inaugural St George’s Day Festival will begin at 11am when Mike the Knight will make a personal appearance. At the same time a very special dragon will also be on St George’s Plateau. The event is scheduled to end at 5pm.

The celebration marks a momentous week for Liverpool with the city celebrating its inaugural Literary Festival – In Other Words – on April 23 to mark the re-opening of Central Library on May 17, which sits in the heart of St George’s Quarter.

A new website will promote the quarter and further events are being planned to promote it’s offer.

Gillian Miller, Chair of the St George’s Quarter group, said: ”We hope this will be the first of an annual free festival to promote our historic St George’s Quarter. Support from City Central Bid and St John’ Shopping Centre, together with in-kind support from Liverpool City Council and quarter members has resulted in an amazing line up for our first year. We hope that the event will grow each year and help to promote Liverpool’s rich heritage.”

Ged Gibbons, Chief Operating Officer of City Central BID, said: ”This festival has all the ingredients to be one of the highlights of Liverpool’s cultural calendar. St George’s Quarter is a jewel in the city’s crown and it deserves a festival that reflects that position and gives the city a chance to celebrate St George’s Day in style. It’s a great advert for the city that so many partners from the public and private sector have come together to make it happen.”

Paul Khan, Deputy Director of Education at National Museums Liverpool, said: “Families who love history, art and discovery should head for this part of town. We’re looking forward to joining the celebrations for Liverpool’s first St George’s Day festival and have a busy day planned, from medieval crafts at World Museum to making your own fire-breathing dragon head band at the Walker!”

Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for culture and tourism, Councillor Wendy Simon, said: “This will be the perfect way to celebrate the patron saint of England in an ideal setting – around St George’s Hall. It will be a packed day of activities, paving the way for the city’s inaugural In Other Words festival which is set to be a fantastic celebration of the spoken and written word.

“It is the perfect family day out and I’m sure it will be a day and a knight to remember!”

Liverpool Waterfront