Festival 2017 Archives


Welcome to the Festival pages, at the Cliff College website.

Hi, I am Ian White, one of the tutors at Cliff, and also the Festival Co-ordinator, working with a creative team to put on a great annual weekend event especially for YOU here at Cliff College.

We would love to see you here at Cliff and share Grace together.

Festival 2017 – Grace

Grace? Yes, ‘Grace’ is our theme for 2017, and we want you to come and join us for a weekend of teaching, worship, laughter and friendship as we tread across the grace-filled ground of this incredible site, and explore what it means to encounter a God who offers Grace – Free, Full and For All.

A weekend for everyone. We want the place buzzing with new friends discovering God’s blessing here on site at Cliff, but also want to invite old friends back to revisit the place of God’s blessing in their lives.

Have you got the date in your diary? Festival 2017 is Friday 26 – Monday 29 May.

Latest News: To help you with your planning over the weekend, the Festival 2017 timetable is now available! Check out the Festival Book and Serve pages  for the download. Get a cuppa….and plan away!

What is happening at Festival 2017? Well, so much already ….and the programme is developing each week.

Evening Celebration worship speakers so far include Terry Virgo, Arianna Walker, Roger Walton, Rachel Lampard, Stephen Skuce – and there’s more to follow….

The seminar programme is already filling up so much we are opening new venues across the site. Far too many sessions to mention here, but lots of variety for children, young people, families and adults, including streams by the Cliff College Faculty, Bible Reading Fellowship, All We Can, The Northumbria Community and the Discipleship & Ministries Learning Network, plus contributions by ex-students and Methodist Evangelicals Together.

As well as the main Bible study in the morning, led by our good friend, and ex-Principal of the college, Rev Dr Martyn Atkins, we have Affinity – a really creative space to explore Bible and prayer hosted by Nel Shallow. In the evening, alongside the main Celebration worship in the Big Tent, there will be an informal quiet act of worship in the chapel led by Lynne Tonge, the college chaplain.

Nomad & Stance from YFC will be on site bringing the football cage, and their dance skills.  Bob Hartman, the Master Storyteller is here weaving new narratives. We are privileged that members of the Northumbria Community will be guiding meditations, thoughts and prayers during the day in the chapel. The Awesome kids work will be headed up by Carolyn Edwards from here at the college, and of course Funky Sunday and the famous Festival Sing-a-long will be in the programme, courtesy of Pete Sheath and Helena Kittle. With the theme of Disney, YOU can be part of selecting what we sing……click https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/7QS88PY  and vote on your three favourite songs to singalong to!

Ignite and Pulse will be rocking in the Youth Zone which is overseen by Tim Taylor, Lauren and Tim Rossell and team. The very successful Storytelling Tent returns, headed up by Laura Smyth, where stories will be shared throughout the day. Play it by Ear will be being dramatic again, and look out…..the One Way UK puppet team are coming back to cause their usual chaos!

As seen on Gareth Malone’s ‘The Choir: Gareth’s Best in Britain’, the Emmanu’EL Apostolic Gospel Academy choir are joining us at Festival 2017! This incredible gospel choir went all the way to the final, and they will be performing on The Festival Fringe on Sunday 28th May. The Illusionist Steve Price also appears on the evening Fringe, and other acts are yet to be confirmed. We are ending the weekend with The Big Festival Dance to music by Benny Lee & The Whistle Stop 5. So bring your dancing shoes! Talking of that…… a drum workshop is planned, and a day of circus skills on Monday!

For the active we will have Adventure + taking us to new heights on the climbing wall, and for the reflective there is the labyrinth, and the opportunity to be guided around the Cliff Cross by Lynne Tonge and team. 35 Chapel Walk host a dramatic art installation across the orchard, and the programme includes a Prayer Mountain session on Monday led by Ashley Cooper, one of the expanding team of Festival Pastors.

The Market Village is expanding – and there’s a new venue – the Campsite Hub on the fields to help serve you wonderful campers. So lots to be inspired by, and also to spend some of your money on!

Gracing Others. To bless others, we are again working with The Archer Project in Sheffield to ensure no foodstuffs are wasted, and you will have an opportunity to make donations to their work.

Grace – a weekend that could change your life. As always, lots of great preaching, worship, seminar teaching, coffee, ice-cream – yes, there will be music, and dancing, and lights, and fun – but above all this will be the place for a real encounter with God.

 Want to know more? Then keep an eye on this page to see Latest News, sign into the Cliff Fest Facebook page and ‘Like’, or contact Cathi Thacker, the Festival Administrator on festival@cliffcollege.ac.uk to be added to the Festival email list.

What about booking? On site indoor accommodation is now fully booked, but there is still room on the expanded campsite. But, if you’re thinking of bringing a big group – book now to get your plot!

Looking forward to seeing you here at Festival 2017 and experiencing Grace together.

Grace 2017 Flyer

God Bless, Ian

We are so glad that Festival is loved by those who come that many keep on coming year after year. But we’re perhaps even more delighted when Festival is discovered for the first time by people who have never been before. Maybe that’s you! And here you are, on the Festival webpage, trying to find out what the Festival weekend is all about – well, you’ve come to the right place.

Festival is a 4 day Friday evening to Monday evening event focused around the Christian story. Our vision is to introduce people to the loving God as encountered in the Biblical story of Jesus Christ, as well as to encourage and equip the church – from the youngest to the oldest – for loving and serving God more effectively. Along the way, there are workshops and seminars, worship and prayers, meetings and get-togethers, with some great leaders from different organisations together with the team of staff, students and volunteers that help make Festival such a great event.

So – what’s Festival? It’s simply a great weekend that might just change your life! We hope to see you at Festival 2018 next May!

Admission fees

£30 – Adult
£20 – 16 and 17 years (plus over 65s, disabled and those on benefits with proof)
FREE – 15 and under

Day rate
£12 – Adult
£8 – 16 and 17 years (plus over 65s, disabled and those on benefits with proof)
FREE – 15 and under

In 2016 we streamed the Big Tent worship every evening, and will do so again in 2017. If you missed any of it, or want to catch the preaching again, check out our Youtube Festival TV page, where you can watch the messages brought by Ian White, Chris Blake, Rachel Jordan and Steve Chalke. There are also interviews with lots of other people at Festival!


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Calver, Hope Valley,
Sheffield, S32 3XG

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