Life returning to normal, but sadly not soon enough for Ipswich Music Day

Thousands of music fans in front of the BBC Radio Suffolk stage at Ipswich Music Day 2019. Picture:

Thousands of music fans in front of the BBC Radio Suffolk stage at Ipswich Music Day 2019. Picture: Neil Didsbury - Credit: Archant

All the indications from the Government are that there will be no further delays to unlocking and that Covid “Freedom Day” – when all legal limits on social contact are dropped – will go ahead on 19th July.

For many businesses who are either still not allowed to reopen, or have been forced to reduce their capacity, this can’t come too soon, especially as Government financial support for them is being wound down.

Let’s hope Boris Johnson is true to his word about both the scale of the unlocking and its permanence.

It might seem as though most restrictions have already been lifted, but this weekend is a reminder that we are still a way off being back to normal.

For tens of thousands of people, the first weekend in July usually means only one thing: Ipswich Music Day.

We believe it is the largest free, single day music festival in the country. It was started in 1991 as a government initiative to have a “National Music Day” but most other places gradually stopped putting on events.

I’m really proud that Ipswich Borough Council has continued to support Music Day, putting on a festival that is the envy of other towns and cities.

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It’s a great shame we’ve had to cancel for a second year running because of Covid. It is our firm intention that Ipswich Music Day will return, bigger and better than ever, in 2022.

In the meantime, we have started to take advantage of the unlocking rules so far to support some smaller scale public events.

One of the first was the Windrush Day celebrations on 22nd June. It was great to see so many people enjoying the steel band on the Cornhill. There was a real buzz in town, reminding us what we have been missing for so long.

Also just opened is the Power Of Stories exhibition at Christchurch Mansion which is gaining rave reviews. It features costumes from the Marvel Studios’ Black Panther film and objects from around the world to show how stories have the power to shape lives.

The exhibition is free but – under current restrictions – you need to book a ticket. More details are available online at: