Live entertainment is returning to a leading North-East venue this summer with weeks of socially distanced events.

Hardwick Hall Hotel in County Durham has revealed plans to host a full Outdoor Summer Sessions programme between August 21 and September 13.

The hotel near Sedgefield was forced to cancel its annual Hardwick Live festival due to the pandemic but owner John Adamson was determined to give music lovers their fix this summer.

The outdoor sessions will include performances by singers including M People lead singer Heather Small, Gabrielle, George Michael tribute act Rob Lamberti and a whole host of big name DJs. The programme also includes the return of the much-loved Oyster Festival in a new format.

After weeks of detailed planning organisers have put together a whole programme of family-friendly events where attendees will be able to book a social distanced booth for up to six people.

Measures put in place include a strict one way system, limited access around the site, food and drink delivered directly after being ordered via a special app, multiple hand sanitisation stations, staggered arrival and departure times to maintain distancing and designated toilets areas.

The hotel is also working closely with professional cleaning organisations to ensure the entire site is decontaminated after each event.

The grounds which overlook Hardwick Country Park lake will stage a number of events, with lots of options for people to enjoy a true festival feeling, in a number of socially distanced ways.

Options for attendees including booking a picnic bench complete with its own umbrella for up to six people, with a number of private dining pods available for anyone wanting to enjoy the experience in style.

The hotel is even offering its own double decker bus with an upper deck which can also be booked privately for a group.

The sessions will kick off on Friday August 21 with two of the UK’s top tribute bands – Coldplay UK and The Jam’d.

The following night Heather Small, the voice of M People, will be live in concert along with DJs Norman Jay and Graeme Park, while Sunday August 23 will be a fundraising event with a ladies day in aid of the Angel Trust.

The hotel has also organised two kids’ festival events – one on Monday 24 August which will be an Ariana Grande tribute act and on Thursday August 27, which will feature Diva Mix.

Friday August 28 will be time to singalong to the Kroud Karaoke Night, while the following evening George Michael tribute act Rob Lamberti who will host Club Tropicana along with DJ Murray Mint.

The Manor Born Garden Party is planned for 30 August, with performances by Alison Limerick and DJs Jeremy Healy, Danny Rampling, Michael Johnson and Tony Hutchinson.

The following day Disney turns up at the hotel for two special Bank Holiday Monday events with Fairytale, taking place at 11am and then again at 3pm.

Top singer Gabrielle will be live in concert on Friday 4 September, with a complete change of pace the following day with the Angel Trust’s Drag Race Bingo. And then on Sunday 6 September, visitors can enjoy a Proms in the Park afternoon tea.

The annual Oyster Festival festival, returns on the weekend of September 11/12. This will again be held in private booths, with performances by Boyzlife, Emerald Thieves and Crackpot.

Those sessions will end on September 13, with an event in aid of the Red Sky Foundation, the Red Sky White Party which will feature DJs Brandon Block and Storm.

Hardwick Hall owner John Adamson believes the events programme will be widely welcomed. He said: “Everyone has felt the loss of not being to enjoy any live entertainment for the past four months and been disappointed that major festivals have been cancelled.

“We’ve worked really hard to put together a fantastic programme of events with someone for everyone and at really reasonable prices.

“At the same time we have put in place a detailed plan to ensure that social distancing is maintained and that these events are taking place in a safe environment.”

 

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