Some of the leading lights of Cumbria’s music scene will be heading over the border to perform at a star-studded festival later this month.

The Big Burns Supper returns to Dumfries from January 24 to February 3 with famous artists such as Frank Turner, KT Tunstall, Alabama 3 and Craig Charles appearing.

Joining them for the biggest contemporary celebration of Scotland’s national poet will be Cumbrian acts including Hardwicke Circus, mylittlebrother, Redfish, Soul Junction and The Postcard Band.

For mylittlebrother, the event will provide a first, and a reunion, of sorts.

The band’s Will Harris said: “We were asked to appear after playing at Carlisle Fringe this year.

“We’ve actually never even played in Dumfries before, so we’re really looking forward to playing to some new faces.

“We just love playing in new towns and new events, so we’re looking forward to meeting everyone, and getting a chance to play our new material to a new crowd.

“The line-up is stunning - I can’t wait to see Frank Turner again. We supported him in Carlisle a few years ago,and he was fantastic.

“It’ll be great to see him playing acoustic in an intimate environment.”

More than 100 events are lined up to entertain thousands of visitors to the historic town over the course of the 11-day festival, which is now in its eighth year.

Among those playing for the first time are Penrith-based Soul Junction, who will be hoping to catch the eye of one of the most influential figures in British soul music.

The band’s Rebekah Gall said: “2018 has been a busy year of festivals for us, and it’s great to be starting 2019 north of the border.

“Our lead singer, Clare, is a native Scot and is looking forward to singing to a home audience.

“There is no question about who we are most looking forward to seeing - Craig Charles of course. He knows all the best soul artists and does a cracking set.”

Well-regarded rhythm and blues outfit Redfish have made a name for themselves in recent years, starring at a number of festivals in and around Carlisle, but with members also hailing from Dumfries, they will be relishing their two chances to impress at the festival.

Rod Mackay said: “We love events like the Big Burns Supper. They bring together folk who truly appreciate live performing arts. We can’t wait!”

The group love the event so much that they are appearing on January 26 and then again on February 3.

The wide-ranging schedule for the festival also includes comedians, including familiar TV faces Ed Byrne and Hardeep Singh Kohli, as well as celebrity hosts, cabaret and theatre performances, family shows, an interactive arcade game, and a packed fringe theatre programme every Friday and Saturday, with the popular Sunday Session wrapping things up on the final day.

Big Burns Festival was created in 2012 as a coming together of people and culture and, of course, celebrating the life and poetry of the bard Robert Burns. The festival is a non-profit event, produced by local charity Elektronika and has received support through Scotland’s Winter Festivals.

Big Burns Festival runs from Thursday, January 24 to Sunday, February 3. Tickets are available to book via or by calling 01381 271 820.