Percy French Festival wins top European award

The Percy French Festival which takes place in Castlecoote House every July has just won an EFFE (European Finest Festivals and Events) award, following a process of intense evaluation from national experts to an international jury.

  There are over 350 festivals in Ireland alone. However there were only 13 festivals awarded this unique and prestigious award North and South. The Percy French Festival and the Westport Festival were the only two awarded the distinguished label in the West of Ireland.

  31 countries entered the competition and there were over 700 winners selected throughout Europe (average of 22 per country). Following an open call to apply for the EFFE Label 2015-2016 launched in summer 2014, hundreds of festivals submitted applications to demonstrate their devotion to three EFFE Label criteria: artistic commitment, community involvement and a festival’s international and global outlook.

  National experts, appointed by EFFE’s national contact points reaching out to festivals in each country, scored the applications and presented the findings to an international jury which nominated the EFFE Label 2015-2016 recipients in May 2015.

  “The award will now launch us to a much wider market,” said organiser Kevin Finnerty.

  “The awards were based on a number of criteria such as community involvement, the festivals national and international outlook, historical and cultural value, originality of thought, unique combination of thought provoking lectures combined with music, and finally brochure, website and promotional material,” he said.

  The annual Percy French Festival, now in its 7th year, is this year again hosting an eclectic mix of music, drama and lively debate from July 8-10. Guest speakers over the three day event include Artist Robert Ballagh, Mayo footballer and All-Ireland club winning manager Kevin McStay, TD Lucinda Creighton, Professor William Reville, Dr Sile De Cleir, Bishop Kevin Doran and many more.

  The music starts proper with song-writer extraordinaire Johnny Duhan, Castlecoote Ramblers, Jon Henderson Quartet, Mulligan Sisters, Don Baker, The O’Donnell sisters and many more in what promises to be another full and exciting week at the wonderful Castlecoote House.