Countdown begins for Liverpool’s new summer festival

The four week countdown is now on to the inaugural Liverpool Loves festival, which takes place at Pier Head Liverpool in August.

The three-day festival runs from Thursday to Saturday (6 to 8 August), and will shine the spotlight on all that is special about Liverpool with four key core themes for 2015 – business, culture, food and well-being.

Liverpool Loves starts on Thursday 6 August with Liverpool Loves Business, it continues on Friday 7 August with Liverpool Loves Ireland, culminating in Liverpool Loves Festival Day on Saturday 8 August.

The full programme was launched on Thursday, 9 July at Liverpool Town Hall, where VIP guests included the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Tony Concepcion; Rosie Jolly, Chief Executive Officer of SEN Together (Social Enterprise Network); Martin O’Shea from Bold Management who is curating the festival’s music programme; with live music performances by former Aeroplanes front man Chris Kearney; Joe Slater from Waterloo Road; and new acoustic act Gary Edward Jones.

The programme includes culture, creative talent, new and established music, developing grass roots business, entrepreneurship, health and well-being, food and drink, as well as celebrating the links between the Liverpool and Ireland.

The festival has a number of key commitments which are at the forefront of every stage of planning. These include employing locally; contracting local businesses to deliver the event; generating a significant economic impact for Liverpool City Region’s visitor economy; and that all profits will be reinvested into an entrepreneur fund to support aspiring local business people to set up in business. Liverpool Loves is being supported by the city’sMayor Joe Anderson.

Liverpool Loves is the brainchild of city centre based events company Orb CIC, who created Liverpool Pride 2010 and is co-creator of the Brazilica Festival.

The festival will be staged at the iconic Pier Head – which is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site – with a bespoke Big Top on the waterfront hosting part of the programme.

The unique festival spans three days – Thursday 6 August is Liverpool Loves Business; Friday 7 August is Liverpool Loves Ireland; and Saturday 8 August is Liverpool Loves Festival Day. Here is a taster of what people can expect on each day:


The Business Big Top will host the day’s activities, starting with an opening ceremony from 8.45am. Professor David Gibson from Liverpool John Moores University Centre for Entrepreneurship will welcome delegates to Liverpool Loves Business, followed by a business breakfast hosted byLiverpool & Sefton Chambers of Commerce. A full programme will continue throughout the day until 5.30pm.

The day will serve as a platform to showcase new and up-and-coming businesses; provide opportunities for business owners and professionals todevelop skills and connect; and aims to encourage entrepreneurs with the next big idea to take the plunge – all through a series of themed workshops, seminars and discussion panels.

Morning seminars include Make Your Shop Window Shine; Streamline Your Business With Digital & Tech; Get The Right Mix Of Marketing & Media; Adapt And Evolve – Grow Around The Local Environment; Pitch Perfect; and What’s The Right HQ For You?

A Business Clinic will run from 12pm to 2pm, hosted by business networking and news organisation YB News, the Growth Accelerator programme and the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). Delegates will need to register in advance to be allocated an advice time-slot. There will be export advice atThe First Port Of Call panel session, hosted by UKTI and Liverpool & Sefton Chambers of Commerce.

Four key members of the Liverpool City Region business community will form a panel to discuss the Four Ps – People, Pioneering, Partnerships and Progress. The panellists are Rosie Jolly, Chief Executive Officer of SEN Together (Social Enterprise Network); Maggie O’Carroll, Chief Executive Officer of The Women’s Organisation; Jenny Stewart, Chief Executive Officer of Liverpool & Sefton Chambers of Commerce; and Frank McKenna, Chief Executive of Downtown in Business.

Networking opportunities will be available throughout the day, with a specific area of the Big Top reserved for delegates to meet and conduct business. This includes Let’s Connect between 1.30pm and 3pm, hosted by The Women’s Organisation. It will focus on funding, media and connecting, and the event is open to all.

Liverpool Loves Business will close with the festival launch party from 5.30pm to 9pm, as the final networking opportunity of the day.

All seminars are free to attend. Register for a complimentary Liverpool Loves Business delegate pass at


Celebrate the city’s rich Irish culture and heritage in the Big Top through an evening of traditional live music and dance at Liverpool Loves Irelandbetween 7pm and 11pm.

With an estimated three quarters of Liverpool’s population having Irish roots, Liverpool Loves Ireland will bring a real traditional Irish party atmosphere to the city’s waterfront.

The show will be headlined by Cream of the Barley, arguably Liverpool’s finest ever Irish band, and is the band’s first Liverpool show in 10 years. The line-up also features Eleanor McEvoy; Jack Owen; Michael Coyne; The Jesse Janes; and The Bolger Cunningham Irish Dancers. The event is hosted by eminent Liverpool historian Frank Carlyle.  Traditional Irish food and drink will be available to purchase throughout the evening.

Tickets are priced at £22.50, available online from or by telephoning 0844 8000 410 (online and telephone ticket sales are subject to a booking fee per ticket and a handling fee per transaction).

Tickets can also be bought in person at the TicketQuarter at Queen’s Square (no booking fee on cash sales). Special group offer – Buy 9 Tickets Get 1 FREE. This offer is only available for group bookings of 10 or more by calling 0844 561 7672 or email


Liverpool Loves Festival Day is free to attend and will run from 10am to 10pm – 12 hours of culture, entertainment and activities on the banks of theRiver Mersey.

The programme will span across zoned areas covering music, the arts, dance, comedy, food and drink, health and well-being, and family fun – creating a real festival atmosphere at the heart of the waterfront. Outdoor stages will provide the soundtrack to the day, curated by Martin O’Shea from Bold Management.

Liverpool Loves New Music on the Bold Management Stage is the place to see new and emerging artistes from 12pm to 8pm, opened by the Sing Me Merseyside Choir. This stage will be hosted by BBC Radio Merseyside/6 Music’s champion for new Liverpool music, Dave Monks, and one of the finest DJs the city has ever produced, Bernie Connor. The line-up is Stephen Langstaff; Polar States; Natalie McCool; Lives; Joe Slater; Seattle Yacht Club; Chris Kearney; Jimmy and The Revolvers; BrassHaus; Oranj Son; Merki Waters; Cavalry; The Ambition; Ego, Paul Holden; Satin Beige; Shamanarchy; Phaedra; Blue Saint; The Floormen; Gary Edward Jones; The Holograms; Go Fiasco; Ellenberg; The Roscoes; Ashley James; and The Talkabouts.

Shamona, winners of the Out On Stage talent competition organised by The Michael Causer Foundation, will also perform. Other stages are Dovedale Social and Merseyrail Sound Station who will also be hosting new bands.

The Big Top will host the live final of talent contest, The Best of Liverpool. Hosted by 20ten Entertainment, the final 10 acts will perform live in front of a large audience and panel of judges including Radio City’s breakfast show host Leanne Campbell; Hollyoaks actress Alex Fletcher; TV impressionist Darren Farley; MD Productions Director Miguel Doforo; and Liverpool Echo music journalist Jade Wright.  Register for free tickets to attend the final

Liverpool Loves Entertainment will prove why Liverpool is renowned as a ‘World in One City’, with diverse cultural activities including traditional Chinese dance, Indian dancing and music, Arabic and African music, street dancing, free-fall circus, as well as street theatre performances.

Book and poetry readings for literature enthusiasts of all ages will be staged by The Reader’s Organisation.

Exciting art installations will be on display, as well as a community art piece by Love Art UK. A market area bursting with local crafts and vintage goods will be hosted by Capstan’s Bazaar, alongside a zone showcasing the very best street food and drink available in Liverpool including a local craft beer festival from Ship and Mitre.

Festival Day will be brought to a rousing finale between 8.45pm and 10.30pm with Liverpool Loves Allstars on the Main Stage, an all stars show in association with The Teenage Cancer Trust. Hosts Jay Hynd and Ellie Phillips from The Guide and Juice FM’s 1 Crazy Gig will intro headline performers including Beryl Marsden; Tommy Scott; Ian McNabb; Connie Lush; Starsailor’s James Walsh; Digsy and The Sums; The La’s Cami; Western Promise and Paul Kappa – with other special guests to be confirmed.  The show includes some outstanding collaborations of some of the biggest number one songs ever produced by Liverpool musicians.

Entry to Festival Day is free. Food and drink will be available to purchase.

Festival Director Josh Boyd from Orb CIC commented:

“We have been working on this festival for over a year – and it’s now just four weeks until attention turns to the Pier Head for three days of exciting activity.

“This programme speaks for itself and offers up something for everyone by representing all aspects of life around our great city. Whether you’re a business owner looking to make connections and grow, someone looking for a day out with the family, or a night out with friends – save the date and join us.

“We’re also delighted to see a host of local organisations, artistes and leading business figures support this festival in its inaugural year, which only demonstrates just how important ‘Liverpool’ is to all of us. We’re asking the people of this great region to get behind their city now – come along, spread the word and spread the love.”

Keep up to date with the latest announcements at

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