Ken Loach will be the reader at the Miners Festival Service at Durham Cathedral as part of this year’s Gala.
The acclaimed filmmaker will speak at the service, which will also include the blessing of the new banner marking the 150th anniversary of the Durham Miners’ Association (DMA).
Ken said: “It is an honour to be asked to be the reader at this year’s Miners’ Festival Service as part of the Gala. I can’t think of a more impressive occasion or a more magnificent cathedral.”
The service, on Saturday 13 July, will also include the blessing of new banners for Horden and for Blackhall. The Cathedral service has been part of the Durham Miners’ Gala since 1897.
DMA Secretary Alan Mardghum said: ‘We are deeply proud that the immense contribution of our communities over many generations is celebrated each year in the magnificent setting of Durham Cathedral. We are delighted that Ken Loach, a great supporter of ours, will give this year’s reading on behalf of the DMA, and in our 150th year we look forward to our new area banner receiving its blessing during the service. Our thanks as ever to everyone at the cathedral for the work they do and for hosting this service that means so much to us all.”
(Photo: John Attle)
The service promises to deliver an energetic and rousing atmosphere, as the procession of colliery brass bands and pit banners arrive in to the cathedral’s breath-taking Norman Nave.
The Very Reverend, Andrew Tremlett, Dean of Durham, said: "The Durham Miners’ Festival Service is a real highlight of the cathedral calendar, and anticipation is already building in the city ahead of July. The cathedral service gives us the opportunity to reflect on the region’s mining legacy, whilst also providing hope and blessings to those who continue to mine in often-dangerous conditions today.”
The Miners Festival Service will begin at 3pm. It always reaches capacity and people are advised to arrive as early as possible to avoid disappointment.