THOUSANDS of people will pour into Nantwich this week for the district's biggest ever music bonanza.
The five-day Nantwich Jazz, Blues and Music Festival swings into action tomorrow (Thursday) with a concert in the Civic Hall featuring Georgie Fame and Sons.
Then it's non-stop music all the way through until Easter Monday, with record-breaking crowds of more than 40,000 supporting the main events at the Civic Hall and the Crown Hotel, and watching scores of free acts at 18 of the town's pubs.
Event organiser Phillip Martin, the Crown Hotel proprietor, is confident that this, the ninth in the annual series of festivals, will be the best to date.
He said: 'We estimated that 40,000 were in town for the music last year and demand for tickets has been much greater this year, so we look like being in for a record-breaker, especially as the weather has improved.'
The Nantwich festival was triggered off 10 years ago when Mr Martin was visiting Dublin. By chance a jazz festival coincided with his visit and he felt Nantwich would be a perfect setting for something similar.
He said: 'At first we had a bit of a struggle to get top-name acts but since the festival has become established, and so successful, the boot has been on the other foot with bands wanting to come back year after year.'
This year's line-up of big-name acts includes Dr Feelgood, The Cadillac Kings, Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel, Mike Sanchez and His Band, Mo'Indigo, Snake Davies and The Suspicions, and The Jive Aces, who are appearing at the Civic Hall, and Nearly Dan, Steve Gibbons, Ian Parker, Giles, Big Blue House, and Trafficker at the Crown Hotel. nNewpark Motors has joined Crewe and Nantwich Town Centre Management to add to the entertainment.
They will provide Family Fun and entertainment on the town square on Easter Saturday, the highlight being The Big Heat who are eight quality 'bluesicians'.
Cllr Steve Hogben, portfolio holder for the local economy, said: 'Town Centre Management are pleased to support the weekend which is always one of the highlights in the calendar of event, adding vibrancy to the lively town of Nantwich, with music, dancing and a holiday atmosphere.' TJ100404JAZZ-002 SATURDAY All events 3-5pm Peppers - Pepper and Salt. Wickstead - Scott D Thompson. McCormick's - Ossie and Bo. White Horse - The Sugar Daddies.