The Keith Nutland Award Competition

for the Festival Young Musician

Saturday 14th March 2020

Postponed – due to the Coronavirus


The Festival of Performing Arts

Cancelled – due to the Coronavirus

Tuesday 5th – Saturday 16th May 2020

The 2020 Festival has been cancelled due to the Coronavirus outbreak

It is with enormous regret that we have to announce the cancellation of the May Festival due to the Coronavirus.  In response to this unprecedented public health crisis, and in line with the government’s advice on public gatherings, we have decided that the safety of the performers, their teachers and supporters, as well as our own volunteers, must be our priority.

As in previous years, we have received thousands of entries; school children, adult choirs from across the UK, and hundreds of individual performers. The Town Hall has been booked, as usual, for 12 consecutive days of music, dance and drama and our stewards are ready to stage another fabulous Festival, not only for the performers, but for large audiences of parents, grand-parents, teachers, friends and others, who come each year to celebrate the Performing Arts and support the extraordinary talents of the performers.

We know that this cancellation will be a disappointment for many people.  However, we must follow a common-sense approach and regard this as an annoying interruption – after all, our Festival has been running, continuously, for the last 94 years!  With everyone’s support we will be back next year to stage Cheltenham’s oldest festival.

Understandably questions are being asked about entry fee refunds.  We are now preparing, of course, to refund all entry fees, as follows: all entry payments made via CFPA’s on-line entry system will be repaid to the original payment card – we hope to complete this process by the end of March.  Those few individuals who have made an entry payment by BACS or cheque will be contacted personally so that, either the cheque can be returned or destroyed, or a repayment can take place.



Anyone interested in becoming involved with running the Festival is most welcome to contact us.  In particular, we are looking for someone to lead our fund-raising effort in the role of Festival Development Executive.  This is a senior level role which will help to guide the organisation’s direction for the next few years.  Do make contact if you feel that you would like to join our team.  It’s so worthwhile – we do make a difference to the young people who perform.

If you would like to know more about helping to run the Festival, contact Brian Harding (Hon Secretary) by email:, or call 07850 153183.

‘be part of it’ – join the team.