Line-up announcement: World-class acts on your doorstep

Want to party with top indie rockers The Pigeon Detectives in your school hall or community centre? Have a laugh with comedian and activist Mark Thomas at The Red Shed? Be charmed by the smash-hit Edinburgh Festival children’s show, The Story Of Mr B?

We’ve also got award-winning cabaret with the world’s first drag king in Joan, followed by local musician Hekima’s African-influenced roots music.

The whole family can enjoy Picture House, which is screening classic Roald Dahl films. And if you’re aged 14 or over, we think you’ll like the cheeky puppets of Meet Fred (be warned, this show contains strong language and puppet nudity).

And they’re all coming to a neighbourhood near you for Back To Ours – a groundbreaking and unique new festival series that’s bringing top touring acts to venues to the north, east and west of Hull in the school half-term holidays, starting 22-25 February, 2017.

Tickets cost £2.50-£7.50.

They go on sale from 11am today at pop-up community box offices at The Freedom Centre in Preston Road, North Point Shopping Centre in Bransholme and Texas Tony’s Café in Hessle Road.

Later this afternoon, you can also buy tickets online. More tickets for the first Back To Ours festival will be released in the new year.

The festival series has been developed in partnership with the host venues: Kingswood Academy, North Point Shopping Centre, Winifred Holtby Academy, The Freedom Centre, Archbishop Sentamu Academy, William Gemmell Club, Hymers College and Sirius Academy West.

Martin Green, CEO and director, Hull 2017, said: “Back to Ours embodies Hull UK City of Culture’s ethos of culture for everyone. We are inviting people in all corners of the city to try something new. Our venue partners have thrown open their doors and worked with us to curate the festivals during half-term holidays and showcase fantastic shows in their great venue spaces. With Back To Ours, we are offering as many people as possible the opportunity to experience something amazing right on their doorstep.

 Back To Ours is all about high-quality touring productions for a range of ages, being performed right in the heart of neighbourhoods at affordable prices. A family of four can visit the Picture House for £10, making tickets a great Christmas present.”

The line-up includes Leeds band The Pigeon Detectives, performing tracks from their brand new fifth studio album Broken Glances in advance of the public release on 24 February. The band, famed for hits such as I’m Not Sorry, Take Her Back and I Found Out, will be supported by local bands (full details to be confirmed).

Activist and comedian Mark Thomas brings his multi-award winning show The Red Shed to Back To Ours. The show, which has been described as “part theatre, part stand-up, part journalism and part activism”, tells the story of the battle for hope and the survival of a community.

The festival also features award-winning shows and performers who wowed the crowds and judges at the 2016 Edinburgh Festival including JOAN performed by drag king champion Lucy Jane Parkinson, which will be followed by Hull’s own African musician Hekima. Other highlights include Picture House, a family film festival with a feast of Roald Dahl movies, and two very different puppet shows in the form of The Story of Mr B presented by international company Shake Shake Theatre for the young ones and the emotional roller-coaster adventure, Meet Fred by Hijinx Theatre for over 14s.

Councillor Alan Clark, portfolio holder for neighbourhoods, communities and ICT at Hull City Council, added: “By introducing different art forms through these events we will be delivering culture to all parts of the city, and bringing together diverse communities for the shared experience of live performance. What’s so great about these performances is that they are accessible for everyone, and we want to ensure that at some stage, at least every person in this city gets a taste for what our year as the UK City of Culture is all about.”

Back To Ours in February is the first in a series of festivals. The next two Back To Ours festivals for 2017 will be run from 26 May to 4 June 2017 and from 27 October to 5 November 2017.

The programme has been developed in partnership with Ed Collier at China Plate, Lee Fells at Leeds International Film Festival, Film Hub North, The British Film Institute and Dean Shakespeare at Revolver.



22–25 February 2017



Sirius Academy West

Wednesday 22 February, 11am and 2pm: The Story of Mr B

Thursday 23 February – screenings at 10.30am, 1.30pm and 4pm: Picture House

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (U), 10.30am

Matilda (PG), 1.30pm

Fantastic Mr Fox (PG), 4pm

Friday 24 February, 7.30pm: The Pigeon Detectives

Saturday 25 February, 1pm: Meet Fred

Hymers College

Saturday 25 February, 7.30pm: Joan (accessible performance – captioned); followed by Hekima, 8.45pm

William Gemmell 

Thursday 23 February, 8pm: The Secret Gig – special guest TBC (On sale mid-January)



Kingswood Academy 

Wednesday 22 February, 6pm: Meet Fred

Saturday 25 February, 7.30pm: Mark Thomas: The Red Shed (accessible show: BSL)

North Point Shopping Centre 

Thursday 23 February, 7.30pm: The Pigeon Detectives

Friday 24 February, 7.30pm: Joan; followed by Hekima, 8.45pm

Winifred Holtby Academy

Thursday 23 February, 11am and 2pm: The Story of Mr B

Friday 24 February, 11am and 2pm: The Story of Mr B (accessible show: relaxed performance)

Saturday 25 February – screenings at 10.30am, 1.30pm and 4pm: Picture House

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (U), 10.30am

Matilda (PG), 1.30pm

Fantastic Mr Fox (PG), 4pm



The Freedom Centre

Saturday 25 February, 7.30pm: The Pigeon Detectives

Archbishop Sentamu Academy

Wednesday 22 February – screenings at 10.30am, 1.30pm and 4pm: Picture House

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (U), 10.30am

Matilda (PG), 1.30pm

Fantastic Mr Fox (PG), 4pm

Thursday 23 February, 3.30pm: Meet Fred (accessible show: BSL)

Thursday 23 February, 7.30pm: Joan; followed by Hekima, 8.45pm

Friday 24 February, 7.30pm: Mark Thomas: The Red Shed

Saturday 25 February, 11am and 2pm: The Story of Mr B