THEY arrived with wellies and went home with the Wailers – it just had to be Cotton Clouds III.
After the brass bands, band of the Grenadier Guards and military bands so far in 2019, Saddleworth and Mossley plugged in for its annual portion of two-day festival fun.
Saddleworth Cricket Club hosted music legends including day one and two top of the billers Peter Hook and the Wailers.
They came in their thousands to this often sleepy hollow on the Tameside-Oldham border to get a slice of solid British rock delivered by Ash – 24 years on from the release of iconic hit Girl from Mars – and Reverend and the Makers.
But Cotton Clouds’ eclectic audience mix also came and were wowed by showstoppers, Oh My God! It’s The Church.
These guys and girls have previously played Glastonbury and Bestival. Cotton Clouds rarely make second time bookings but they might make an exception with this irreverent bunch.
Coby Fletcher is one of the exceptions, maybe because this hard working, multi-talented singer songwriter is also known to local audiences as Jake Fletcher.
He’s good enough to have been given a guitar by ‘Modfather’ Paul Weller and invited to play with the Specials on their recent US tour and PP Arnold.
Local bands Flatline and the Maitlands also had chance to rub guitar shoulders with the good, very good and in the case of Hooky and the Wailers, musical greats.
Rain that threatened to put a dampener on the first day’s proceedings didn’t. It was muddy waters in the nearby River Tame and also occasionally underfoot leading to the venue.
But it couldn’t rain on the parade of these hardy festival revellers who basked in glorious Saddleworth sunshine throughout Saturday.
This was the third year of an event described as ‘a boutique festival’ when first started by brothers Rick and Max Lees plus investor Luke Stanley.
It has become an integral part of the area’s list of hit attractions and must see events, rivalling Whit Friday, Yanks and Rushcart.
And as one of this year’s reviewers wrote: “Now we are left with one question: ‘Where do we go from here?’
“Three stellar years of this festival, and there’s absolutely no reason to doubt their next move will be just as good.”