Gomez lead singer Ben Ottewell heads Ale House Rocks in Darley Dale

Ben Ottewell

Ben Ottewell

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Many people have ideas of running their own music festival but very few people actually go through with it, and even fewer people make it past the first year.

Organisers Mike McMaster, Paul Taylor, Joel Atkin and Alan Atkin decided that the Derbyshire Dales needed a festival which would celebrate the talent of artists within it.

The first Ale House Rocks Festival was held on the field of Alan’s pub, The Square & Compass, Darley Dale in September 2014 and its organisers are eagerly preparing for its second year.

They have pulled off a coup by securing Ben Ottewell to headline this year’s event. Ottewell, the lead singer of the Mercury Prize-winning band Gomez, grew up in Matlock Bath and has gone on to enjoy international acclaim, both as part of Gomez and as a solo artist.

The festival on September 5 will start at midday and run through until 11pm, showcasing an eclectic mix of sounds.

“We honestly couldn’t be more thrilled that the festival is going ahead again this year,” said Joel. “Last year was an experiment and one that really paid off as a showcase. This year, we’ve been working really hard to make sure we exceed everyone’s expectations – including our own!”

Joining Ben Ottewell on this year’s bill is blues player extraordinaire Matt Woosey. Before that sees hotly-tipped Derbyshire band Patawawa take the stage with their electro-indie-funk sounds. Joining from London are Dropbear with a new album, The Fall, to perform within a rocking set.

This year also sees the return of last year’s favourites, Havana Saints for more of their drum and bass and live dance covers.

Rock-blues band The King Bains will be providing some dirty fuzz to the evening, and alternative band Echoed In Earth will share some of their songs from their new EP.

Rocking some new material and hitting the drums loud will be Black Hearted Devils.

Oxford-based alternative rock band Dirty Valuables will be performing their Derbyshire Dales debut with songs from a new EP.

Bakewell-based Kill The Captain will play at the festival for the first time.

Kicking off the festival at midday will be vocal marvel Gareth Barkley-Smith who will also be performing later in the day with the eponymously named Barkley Smith band.

Tickets for entry to the festival only are priced at £8 each; for entry to the festival and camping at the pub on Friday and Saturday it is £22 and for entry to the festival and camping on Saturday only it is £16.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.wegottickets.com/f/8912.

Limited tickets may be available on the door but advance booking is strongly recommended.

The festival has garnered the support of businesses in the area for its second incarnation. Some, such as J.A. Hardy Ltd, Hydro-X, KEMS Autos Ltd, Peak Job Solutions and GEO. Siddall and B.J. Waters Transport Ltd are sponsoring while others, such as Italiano Forni pizzas and Oooh la la Crepes will be having stalls at the festival .

For further information on the festival, visit the website www.alehouserocks.co.uk