first music festival since lockdown

Dark Valley Revival at Abbey Mill's first music festival since lockdown

Everyone at Abbey Mill was so pleased to welcome back Folk on the Lawn. This is our very first festival since the start of lockdown restrictions. You can’t imagine how good it was to see familiar faces together with new artists and to enjoy real music performed live. As always the mood across the four day festival was laid back and convivial. A wide range of artists showcased their work and there was definitely something for every taste. Absolutely everyone had fun, with kids dancing on hay bales and Mum and Dad relaxing with drinks in the beer tent. Even the ‘Miller’s Dad’ was busy making friends on his mobility scooter! Here’s a quick glimpse of some of the acts that we really enjoyed. 

Kahlo After Frida at Abbey Mill's first music festival since lockdown
Kahlo After Frida
Kahlo After Frida

Kahlo After Frida were the exciting final act who played the Cottage Stage on Friday. The musicians were Simon Cottle on flamenco/ folk guitar and Louise Armstrong on arresting vocals. The duo’s music reimagines the independent spirit of the artist Frida Kahlo. You can find out more about their music on Facebook.

Dark Valley Revival at Abbey Mill's first music festival since lockdown
Dark Valley Revival
Dark Valley Revival

Dark Valley Revival were the foot-tapping act rounding up Friday night’s music. This band fondly describes themselves as ‘emerging from the darkest depths of the south Wales valleys’ in 2016! Above all their music revisits bluegrass, gospel and the country songs of the past. Introducing their own vibrant, self written material gives them their unique and energetic sound. In addition the Dark Valley Revival sound is inspired by artists like Doc Watson, The Carter Family, Gillian Welsh and Gene Clark to create an exciting blend of psychedelic folk, bluegrass and punk. Similarly many of the band members have previously played with the Soft-Hearted Scientists, Gwair and Helen Love which altogether makes for a refreshingly eclectic line up of musicians.

We Are Muffy at Abbey Mill's first music festival since lockdown
We Are Muffy
We are Muffy

We are Muffy are best known for their byline of ‘all manner of things will be well’. As anticipated they gave a mesmerising performance on Saturday night’s River Stage. The viewers backstage agreed the music was completely intriguing. Meanwhile those at the front responded with ‘we were indeed mesmerised, thanks muchly! Another audience member said simply, ‘I loved these 2 years ago’. 

Musicians Angeline Morrison and Nick Duffy are the talent behind the We are Muffy’s magic. They mostly use a distinctive array of instruments to produce a charmingly ramshackle take on Indi pop. On the other hand they are also known for their haunting English folk music. The We Are Muffy songs have also been described as ‘The good bits of Belle and Sebastian with all the drama and electrically powered stuff removed and replaced by thumb pianos’ by music writers PopMatters. On stage at the festival they were captivating and much appreciated by a very enthusiastic audience.

Hey St Matthew at Abbey Mill's first music festival since lockdown
Hey St Matthew
Hey St Mathew

Meanwhile Hey St Mathew started off the Saturday evening music under the trees on the Cottage Stage. They are an Anglo-Welsh band including Sheena Bailey on guitar, singer song writer MG Boulter and Mike Bailey on bass. Together the trio use classic song craft and story telling to explore both pastoral and suburban themes. Music critics have said their work recalls late 60’s gentle psychedelia and by contrast also chamber folk. Certainly the band draws on many diverse influences. Our audience’s response was ‘these were great’ and ‘really enjoyed this set this evening’. Look out for the Hey St Mathew’s debut album which will be released in 2022. 

Peter Gowen at Abbey Mill's first music festival since lockdown
Peter Gowen
Peter Gowan

Sunday took off with Peter Gowan ‘encouraging participation/ or intimidating the audience’ on the Cottage Stage! Peter is a poet, presenter and raconteur and was styled a ‘comedy genius’ by the North Wales Pigeon Fanciers’ Gazette. Initially he started out writing serious verse but soon decided that ‘he wanted people to laugh with him, not at him’. As a result he now writes ‘terrible verse intended to make you giggle and exercise your chuckle muscle’. Judging by our active audience’s athletic response he really is a genius! 

The Folk on the Lawn festival was an amazing 4 days full of music, sun and laughter! Thank you to our gifted artists who gave their time and talents so generously. A big thank you also to our energetic and resourceful stall holders, crafters, caters and refreshementeers. We hope you enjoyed our first festival since lockdown as much as we did. We look forward to all your stories and feedback and to celebrating music and local beer together again at next year’s festival. 

Skylark, talented musicians and performance duo

So how do talented musicians and performance duos weather lockdown? How about performing online and local, or fundraising for great causes? Then of course what about writing and recording new material? That’s exactly how gifted musicians and performance duo, Skylark, have used their talents and time. They’ve managed to create more great music and help others along the way. Together they have given over 80 online performances, through the Forest of Dean Virtual Open Mic initiative alone.

Local charity Ready Steady Go has also benefited from their fundraising efforts at Live Music from South Wales. Ready Steady Go organises events and activities for children with autism. It’s a great initiative that allows the children to have fun and flourish in a structured environment.

Going virtual in lockdown has also seen Skylark online at Weymouth Open Mic and for The Gatehouse, Monmouth. They’ve performed in virtual gigs for Brockweir, Hewelsfield & St Briavels and for Lysaght Live too.

Lockdown has given the duo plenty of time to record more songs and ‘spruce up’ their set list. Now that things are easing they’ve even been able to play live at The Jukebox and Lime Tree Cafe Bar, (Facebook) in Chepstow.

Skylark are lucky enough to live locally in the beautiful Welsh countryside. The landscape has inspired much of their music and has seen them safely though lockdown. We look forward to welcoming them to Abbey Mill on 1st and 29th August 2021 and sharing their music with visitors and friends.

Folk on the Lawn music festival 2021

Folk on the Lawn is an innovative, rootsy and ‘chance-taking’ music festival, playing live at Abbey Mill from 15 to 18 July 2021. We hope you’ll enjoy our vibrant ‘homespun genre’, which is our acoustic antidote to X Factor fatigue! Our performers include a number of international artists and signed bands, in addition to Welsh, English and very local talent. The stunning natural setting, together with the artists’ good will, makes for a very relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere.

The festival is not-for-profit and is run completely by volunteers. Our friends and supporters lend us the space, equipment, time and, not least, artistic prowess. A big thank you to all our performers, to Abbey Mill Centre and their staff and the good folk of Tintern, for helping us stage the Folk on the Lawn festival for an 11th year.

We welcome ‘wristband donations’ in support of our artists. These are available on site and also in advance through our funding page.

See our website for a full line up of artists and also our Facebook page for more details. You can also follow us across the weekend on Twitter.

guitarist ian luther

From 1992 to ’96 guitarist Ian Luther played alongside Dave ‘Celtic’ Cox as the Twist Devils duo, performing at over 200 UK venues each year. Since then he has travelled across Europe as a live solo artist, entertaining audiences with his exhilarating and distinctive music style. He also works alongside other special guest musicians. Ian writes a lot of his own songs and is always and exploring new material and ideas.

You can listen to Ian Luther’s signature hillbilly version of ‘Hey Joe!’ at Soundtrack reverbnation

Ian’s recent music releases include,

The End of the World, album 2018

The Lonely Road, album 2015

The Lonesome Busker – single 2012

Banging on a Big Bass Drum – single 2011

The Twist – single 2011

and are all available at Apple Music

Find out about Ian and enjoy more of his work at his official site

on line shop

Following on from our successes with both Facebook and Instagram, we’re delighted to announce that you can now order directly from our website! Both Abbey Mill Shop and the Cider Press have begun digitising their stock, with Boat House, Wye Valley Craft Association and Woodland Studio soon to follow. You can now freely browse our collections from the comfort of your own home via our shop tab. Our stock is also frequently updated so be sure to regularly check out what we have to offer! Our on-line shop is a great option for those who want to shop locally and support independent businesses, but who may be a bit strapped for time! Happy shopping!

we’re on Instagram!

Having successfully launched our Abbey Mill Tintern Facebook account, we’re further expanded our online/ digital presence to Instagram! Thanks to Instagram’s ‘Story’ feature, we’ve been able to easily keep all of our followers up-to-date with the latest developments at Abbey Mill over the busy Christmas period! We’re using the network to help keep our customers informed about the festive goodies available at the Mill and (more importantly) our remaining availability for our legendary Christmas lunches!

we’re on Facebook!

These are trying times, a period in which we’re required to rethink how we go about living our lives. It’s not only businesses which have been affected but also the community, with many in Monmouthshire suffering from total isolation due to the county’s rugged landscape. Luckily, our team have been playing an active hand in combatting this isolation by introducing Abbey Mill Deliveries: pie and pasty boxes, individual and whole cake boxes and celebration and afternoon High Tea boxes! Using the world’s biggest social media platform, Facebook, as well as telephone ordering, Abbey Mill is connecting with both long standing and new customers, ensuring that they have everything they need to get through this bumpy period.

Woodsaw & Wheel cafe restaurant refurbishment

Despite the country being locked down, the team at Abbey Mill has been working hard in the background to be ready to reopen as soon as things are safer. Since the confinement was first announced our team has been working to completely refurbish our Woodsaw & Wheel cafe and restaurant, to give our visitors yet another reason to come and see us once the restrictions are lifted! See our home page refurbishment overview and our latest coffee shop menus for a taster!

afternoon tea delivered to my door

We’re been thinking of ways to keep our friends and visitors smiling, and help them celebrate their special occasions and still stay safe across lockdown. So many people have ordered our Afternoon High Tea Boxes, which we’ve been delighted to deliver to their doors. Christopher Wilson kindly told us about his experience through Facebook:

Treated my parent’s to an Abbey Mill afternoon tea yesterday. It was hand delivered to my door and was beautifully and thoughtfully put together. Everything was delicious and it was excellent value for money. A great treat for loved ones over Christmas and something to share with the family. Cannot recommend highly enough!

Christopher Wilson, Facebook

If you have a birthday, anniversary, special occasion or just really need a treat, please look at our box selections on our Deliveries page. You can phone through your order on 01291 689228 or email us here. We’re open for collections too and can meet most special dietary requirements. Life’s so much sweeter with a slice of cake!

abby at abbey mill

We have a truly heart-warming story to share with you all! As the second nation lockdown has (finally) come to a close, Abbey Mill has opened its doors to the general public once again! Due the Abbey Mill Centre being pet friendly, one of our patrons decided to bring her dog along. She had such a delightful time catching up with our staff members and enjoying one of the many tasty treats which we serve at the Mill, that she was totally unaware that her dog decided to go for a wander! As the Abbey Mill has been at the beating heart of Tintern for over 20yrs, we were quick on the draw! Ensuring that everyone we knew was contacted in the hopes of finding the lost dog! Safe to say that it wasn’t long before one of our many contacts identified the dog and returned her back to the Mill! But best of all, it turns out that the lost dog was called none other than Abby! What a fairy-tale story!