Countdown to MoFest is on!

Ash frontman Tim Wheeler
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler

With only 30 days until this year’s Montrose Music Festival the countdown is on.

The annual festival returns next month with 24 venues and will see the addition of the ‘MoFest Dome’ to “complement” a new Market Street food court area, showcasing local and Scottish produce, which is part of the Year of Food and Drink Scotland 2015.

Last year, an estimated 12,000 people descended on Montrose with an estimated boost of £750,000 to the local economy, and this year the annual festival is set to be bigger and better.

MoFest Secretary Anne Jenkins said: “We are massively excited about MoFest 2015, we’ve got some great things going on this year.

“The ‘MoFest Dome’ is a 10 metre geometric tent that will host some open mic acoustic sets.

We’ve also combined the Youth Festival, typically held on Sunday, into the High Street event so this year the main stage will be in action on both Saturday and Sunday for another packed weekend of entertainment.”

This year’s headliner Northern Irish indie rockers Ash will open the festival on Friday, May 22 in the Town Hall.

Support will be from Scottish rock band The Amorettes and Montrose band If All Else Fails, who will be welcoming back bass player Lewis Paton, who had to have surgery in September after the state of his health deteriorated.

Lewis has chron’s disease and spent four months in Dundee’s Ninewells Hospital after the operation.

MoFest chairman David Paton said: “The response to Ash as this year’s headliner has been amazing. We’ve had fantastic feedback with people really excited.

“Its going to be an incredible night, and what a great way to welcome back local musician Lewis from If All Else Fails after his illness.”

Now in its eighth year the festival’s reputation has grown and on top of the annual event next month, the team behind the festival have secured ska legends Madness, fronted by Suggs, for an outdoor concert on the East Links in July - another coup for the committee.

MoFest secretary Anne Jenkins said: “The event become an integral part of the local calendar.

“We work closely with Angus Council Economic Development Team in relation to the tourism benefits the festival brings to the area.

“All the accommodation in Montrose is usually booked up for the MoFest weekend and there doesn’t seem to be a bed left for when Madness are due to play on July 5, which can only be good for local businesses.

“The shop window competition also returns this year, so local store fronts are encouraged to decorate their windows.

“Last year’s Status Quo theme saw some interesting designs and this year the committee are hoping for the same calibre of Ash or Madness related displays.”

The full festival line up will be announced soon with the schedule being available approximately two weeks before the festival when programmes go on sale.

Tickets for Ash on May 22 and Madness on July 5 are available online from the Ticketline website.