Wed. Nov 25th, 2020

Isle of Wight Observer News

The Island's Free Newspaper

Female team from Garlic Festival celebrate International Women’s Day

3 min read

The nationally recognised Isle of Wight Garlic Festival will be back again in August and it returns with an all-female team.

The women have ambitious plans to make sure the Island’s biggest summer show highlights everything that’s great about the Isle of Wight. Expect another year of street food, music, kids’ activities, arena acts and more to entertain the whole family in the school holidays.

Laura Stocker, Madeleine Holmes, Rebecca Finch and Zoe Stroud are the all-new organising team behind the Garlic Festival and they’ll rely heavily on an army of friends, family, helpers and volunteers. (Picture L-R – Madeleine Holmes, Laura Stocker and Zoe Stroud).

Laura, now in her 14th year of the show says: “Some of our brilliant volunteers have been involved since the beginning, others have joined along the way. People often ask ‘who runs the Garlic Festival?’ and because we’ve been doing it so long, we forget people don’t know.”

With so many festivals popping up over the years, the gang behind the Garlic Festival have tried to keep the roots of the show within the community while moving with the times and constantly improving the quality of entertainment. No wonder it’s been successful since 1983 and is the Island’s biggest summer show.

Madeleine says: “This is my 13th year being involved, all us girls have full-time jobs separate from the show, the Garlic Festival feels like a hobby and we all love working with the local community. In my day job, I don’t get to do things like baking, painting signs and sewing Dracula capes! We meet so many amazing people, groups and societies, we all do it for the love of it!”

The ladies are joined this year by Rebecca Finch who moved to the Island in 2015 with her husband Steve and two children. She’s quickly made herself a part of the Island-furniture, volunteering for the Island Savoyards as their marketing guru.

Newest recruit Rebecca says: “Last year was my second year helping out over the weekend but now I am proud to be part of the organising team. The Garlic Festival is part of Island life and I am looking forward to being more involved”

Laura continues: “Every year we run a special ticket offer on our website selling tickets at a reduced price because we want to make the festival accessible for everyone. Year on year it becomes harder to arrange, putting on an event this size costs a huge amount of money, so it’s a delicate balance keeping prices down but having a viable show packed with fun.”
The organisers are delighted to welcome Zoe Stroud this year, she’s a well-known marketing professional and takes charge of partnerships and sponsorships.

Zoe Stroud says “I started my own freelance marketing business Zesty in January and this is my first year working professionally with the Garlic Festival. I have attended every year with my dog Ringo and love the show as it is a great day out. I can’t wait to get properly stuck in.”

Zoe continues: “We have found some amazing sponsors for this year’s show who are bringing goodies galore. Bringing in nationally recognised sponsors helps keep the event running and is now becoming more of a financial necessity at large events.”

Keep an eye on the Garlic Festival website for fantastic announcements of acts and ticket offers.

SPRING INTO MARCH OFFER on tickets via our website now! – Visit www.garlicfestival.co.uk

Isle of Wight Garlic Festival – 15th – 16th August 2020