It’s that time of the year good people, when Ramsbottom festival – I’m sorry, I’ll read that again: Head for the Hills festival, the recently rebranded music weekender, returns to Ramsbottom Cricket Ground.

This year isn’t my first, I’ve covered several of the festivals as they’ve grown through the years and I’m proud to have witnessed how it has blossomed into the highly regarded event it is today. Located next to the steam railway station in downtown Rammy, this festival has consistently attracted top drawer headliners, like The Stranglers, and this year plays host to The Bluetones, The Boomtown Rats and The Slow Readers Club.

However, the main attraction for me isn’t the main stage. That’s always a given. The real treasures are buried in the satellite stages, so that’s where you will find me.

We’ve had local heroes A Harp and a Monkey, with their distinctive laconic tales of northern life, blues mavericks Walk and the illustrious MAIA. These stages are also fertile grounds for artists like Becky Langan and Cantor Semper. Not too long ago Slow Readers Club also graced these stages. This makes the festival so much richer than just the mosh pit mess you see elsewhere, and it never disappoints.

So, down to the important stuff: this year’s festival welcomes The Lovely Eggs, Stealing Sheep and LIINES. The beer is provided by neighbouring Bury’s Silver Street Brewery to keep our CAMRA friends happy. All of the food is provided by local vendors and, needless to say, it’s excellent. You won’t, at any time, be offered a credit card, savings account or life insurance. If you are, please inform a steward.

In fact, if you need anything at all, talk to the volunteers. They are the unsung heroes who really make this festival the success it is. They know everything that’s going on and will go the extra mile to make sure you have a great, safe time.

We look forward to seeing you and hope you bring the weather with you.

Head for the Hills runs from Friday 14 to Sunday 16 September.

Dave Jones