The Gloucester Shanty Festival is a music-based event celebrating our country’s rich history with naval song.
For the last few years, usually in May, internationally and nationally acclaimed sea shanty groups have descended upon Gloucester to perform and spread their passion for maritime music.
This site is a celebration of the good times that have occurred at the Gloucester Shanty Festival and also covers the action at Shanty Festivals all across the UK and the rest of the word. Maritime music is very much still alive and kicking in the United Kingdom, holding a special place in the world of British Folk music. There are hundreds of people around Britain who keep traditional sea shanties alive, they meet each week in pubs, village halls and basements around the country singing songs that are often well over two centuries old.
Shanty Festivals are a great opportunity to experience this utterly British tradition up close and meet the people involved with this fascinating subculture. Usually taking place over the space of a weekend, tents and stages are set up across a town or city and groups are invited to perform at them. These are great events for families and young people alike – stroll around a venerable historical town, catch a couple of performances, go and get some food, maybe take a photo with some performers in fancy dress, fill up your tankard of ale and then sing-along with a whole crew of new friends!