HOUGHTON FEAST IS AN ANCIENT FESTIVAL HELD EVERY OCTOBER IN HOUGHTON-LE-SPRING, NEAR DURHAM AND SUNDERLAND. THE FESTIVAL DATES BACK TO THE 12TH CENTURY WHEN IT ORIGINATED AS MICHAELMAS, THE DEDICATION SERVICE OF THE PARISH CHURCH OF ST MICHAEL & ALL ANGELS.
Houghton Feast is a 10 day festival and features a fairground, traditional ox roasting, church events, carnival parade, a tattoo with pipes and drums, shows, community events, exhibitions, talks and tours, and fireworks!
The 2019 Festival runs from Friday October 4th until Sunday October 13th 2019.
HISTORY OF HOUGHTON FEAST
The Feast has its origins in the 12th century as Michaelmas, the festival of the dedication of the parish church of St Michael & All Angels.
A common misbelief is that Rector Bernard Gilpin (1557 to 1583) founded the event, or that it originated as a celebration of his safe return to Houghton after his arrest for heresy when the country was under the rule of Mary I; when in fact the Feast predates Gilpin’s arrival at Houghton.
The festival, which is still centred on the historic parish church, has taken many forms over the years. Horse racing was a big feature of the Feast up until the last race in 1938, and it is the large crowds of miners and their families with a few pennies to spare that attracted stalls, show booths and roundabouts to the Market Place and Lake grounds.
Houghton Feast Carnival / Parade 2019
Saturday 5th October 2019
See below for Carnival Application and Risk Management forms