Tomorrow’s Ghosts Festival, Whitby – Preview

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Former Whitby Goth Festival Relaunches as ‘Tomorrow’s Ghosts’ in October

by Sarah Morgan

Bram Stoker has a lot to answer for. He couldn’t have imagined, back in 1897 when Dracula was published, that more than a century later, people would be inspired to create events in its honour.

Whitby has long since made the most of its Dracula connection – for the uninitiated, it’s where he washes up in England after travelling from his native Transylvania – via museum exhibitions and its biannual Goth Festival.

But this year, change is afoot. The Goth Fest at Whitby Pavilion was a staple of the coastal town’s calendar, but from October is being replaced by the Tomorrow’s Ghosts Festival, run by Leeds-based Absinthe Promotions, which organises literature, film and music events. Absinthe also manages The Eden House, a collaborative music project that will be appearing during the weekend.

Alongside its music and events work, Absinthe Promotions is working with Dacre Stoker, an author and great-grandnephew of Bram.

tomorrow's ghosts festival whitby preview paradise lost

Paradise Lost will appear at the inaugural ‘Tomorrow’s Ghosts’ fest in Whitby

“Notorious abode”

“Bram’s work has inspired generations of writing, film and music,” says Dacre. “It’s great to see events such as this continuing in the town of Whitby which features so prominently in Dracula.”

With an emphasis firmly on music this time around, the festival will also welcome Paradise Lost, who headline Friday’s line-up, with Fields of the Nephilim taking centre stage on Saturday. Other bands to look out for are The Society, Salvation and Sometime the Wolf.

But don’t worry if music isn’t your main point of interest. The festival’s much-loved film events return via screenings of such classics as The Blood on Satan’s Claw, The Lost Boys, Twins of Evil and Fright Night.

Then, on Sunday, there’s a real treat in store – a chance to see Borley Rectory, an animated documentary about the notorious abode dubbed ‘the most haunted house in England’ by those brave enough to step through its doors.

tomorrow's ghosts festival whitby preview abbey

Whitby Abbey

“Wide range of events”

Director Ashley Thorpe will be taking part in a Q&A session. Plus, one of the film’s stars, horror expert, actor and writer Jonathan Rigby, is in town to discuss Euro Gothic cinema.

The Dark Days Alternative Market opens its doors on Friday and runs throughout the weekend, and there’s a chance to support the Sophie Lancaster Foundation, which is screening the film Black Roses; her mum, Sylvia, is set to take part in a Q&A session.

Goth may be the theme, but there’s a wide range of events on offer. Hats off to Absinthe Promotions for coming up with a program so diverse – it certainly bodes well for the future.

Tomorrow’s Ghosts runs from 26th – 29th October. Further details, including ticket info and a schedule, can be found at tomorrowsghostsfestival.co.uk

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