Organisers say 8,000 attended Hartlepool’s Waterfront Festival after event goes out with a big splash

More than 8,000 people flocked to Hartlepool’s Waterfront Festival this year, some 7,000 attending the festival’s moon attraction, according to organisers.

By Madeleine Raine
Thursday, 4th August 2022, 1:28 pm
Updated Thursday, 4th August 2022, 3:48 pm

This year’s festival took place on Saturday and Sunday July 9 and 10, with live music, open air performances, an outdoor cinema, immersive experiences and family-friendly workshops.

One of the most popular attractions, Gaia, allowed people to see a replica of planet Earth by the internationally renowned artist, Luke Jerram.

In November 2021, Luke exhibited the very same moon in Durham Cathedral as part of the Museum of the Moon.

'The Lips' by Puppets with Guts at the Hartlepool Waterfront Festival Rebirth 2021, on Saturday.

Councillor Bob Buchan, Chair of Hartlepool Borough Council’s Adult and Community-Based Services Committee, said: “We are delighted that so many people came along and enjoyed the Waterfront Festival weekend and also Gaia.”

Another popular attraction was the operatic performance by Svitlana Sanina, who earlier this year, moved to Hartlepool with her husband after fleeing her home in Ukraine.

Over the weekend, visitors experienced a range of attractions, from live performances to hands-on activities.

As part of a project working with young men to improve their mental health, the Young Men’s Better Mental Health Group teamed up with Tees Valley poet and illustrator, Lizzie Lovejoy, to explore concepts surrounding isolation, inclusion and resilience.

'Travisty' at Dolly Parton at the Hartlepool Waterfront Festival Rebirth 2021, on Saturday.

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These themes were brought to life by Lewis Hobson from DurhamSprayPaints who created the large scale visual art piece.

Drone footage captured the live art installation taking shape and spelling out the word ‘courage’, which will stay until the site is redeveloped.

Over £5,300 was raised on a ‘pay as you decide’ basis, with all donations going towards providing high-quality creative workshops for young people at next year’s event.

Hartlepool Waterfront Festival Rebirth 2021, on Saturday.

Bob Buchan later said: “Our pay what you decide format was a very effective, inclusive way of enabling many local people who are currently facing financial pressures to experience an exciting and entertaining family festival, with something for everyone – including the never-to-be-forgotten, world-class Gaia.

“Thank you to everyone who made it such a memorable event.”

Hartlepool Waterfront Festival will return next year when Hartlepool hosts the world-famous Tall Ships race from July 6 to July 9.

For more information about Hartlepool’s Waterfront Festival and to watch highlights from this year’s event visit