It might not be number one on everyone’s visit list, but there’s more to Wakefield than the Wildcats and the Hepworth Gallery, as independent festival Long Division once is once again back spread around the city’s venues and with an enviable cast of players. They’re well sourced with musical acts, but the event is really a celebration of all things artistic hosted within the city, with comedy, spoken word and artistic events also planned.
Although the main focus of the event takes place over the weekend, the festival officially begins on the Wednesday 29th May evening, when it partners with Artwalk Wakefield to see events taking place in open artists studios and at various venues across the city. Some of the work commissioned through the festivals “Onto The Streets” strand will debut here for the first time.
Thursday (30th) see’s the festival in the hands of two local promoters as Body present Backseat Mafia favourites Meursault supported by Mi Mye at The Establishment, while over at the Jolly Boys Tap, Ric Neale presents a special edition of his monthly Monochrome night with special guests The Bleeding Obvious along with a spoken work event titled Poets around The Piano.
On Friday, after the Central Marquee has been opened up for a series of community events, then there’s the The Big Fat Festival Quiz in aid of Andy’s Man Club. Featuring a house band, guest quiz-masters, a bar and big prizes, every pound the festival receive from tickets will go directly to the charity that was setup to deal with the huge problem of suicide being the number 1 killer of men aged under 45 by simply offering a place to talk openly and spread the message that “it’s good to talk”.
And so to Saturday (June 1st). Starting at midday and running up to midnight (and quite possibly beyond), the whole of Wakefield City Centre will be taken over with live music, comedy, spoken word, workshops, exhibitions and more.

Starting at midday and running up to midnight (and quite possibly beyond), the whole of Wakefield City Centre will be taken over with live music, comedy, spoken word, workshops, exhibitions and more. With venues including the stunning Theatre Royal Wakefield, the city’s largest venue Warehouse 23 and the return of Wakefield Town Hall and our Precinct stage, Saturday is the day to be at Long Division. Over 100 performances will take place across the city, bringing together great emerging artists and nationally touring ones, side by side.

There’s going to have to be some serious planning / running between venues involved as they’ve pulled together an incredibly strong line-up. At the Warehouse 23, headliners Peter Hook & The Light are supported by We are Scientists and Asian Dub Foundation, while further down the bill are perennial Mafia favourites We Were Promised Jetpacks and Menace Beach. Over at the iconic Theatre Royal is Bill Ryder Jones with Penguin Cafe, Aiden Moffat & RM Hubbert and Avi Buffalo among the support, with Art Brut, bis, International Teachers of Pop, Cowtown and the brilliant Leila Moss on over at the Mechanics Theatre.

Throw in just under a dozen more venues and scores of bands – including some of our favourites in Mik Artistik’s Ego Trip, The Golden Age of TV, Ceiling Demons, Knuckle, Dead Naked Hippies, some wristbanded and some free, then you’ve got the makings of a memorable day.

The Sunday headliner is Richard Herring, who is taking his hugely popular RHLSTP podcast out on the road. With a to be announced special guest, Rich will record the latest episode of the podcast in the beautiful surroundings of Theatre Royal Wakefield. Tickets available here.

Otherwise, there will be a headlining set from Queen tribute Mercury on the precinct stage + local supports. Wakefield Record Fair will hold it’s first outdoor event as a specialist market and our own Bull Ring Marquee will host shows from Youth Anthems, our own #YoungTeam and various family workshops, including building your own instruments and zine-making. All of this is free to attend and will from from midday until 6pm.

If you’re in any doubt, just ask the people who came last year….

Website for Long Division Festival 2019 is HERE

Tickets are on sale HERE