BRADFORD’S Ska and Reggae Festival is returning for a fifth year - to the delight of organisers.

A group of friends debuted the event is 2013 at the city’s Railway Club and have seen it prosper.

It moved to the University of Bradford the following year, and has been there ever since. This year’s festival is at the university on July 1, 6pm to 2am.

David Crawford, one of the organisers and founders, said: “”Five years in I am still surprised. I’m not surprised it is happening, I am surprised that people want to keep on supporting us.

“It is about trying to create an event that highlights Bradford and the people of Bradford. That it is not all doom and gloom and that we know how to enjoy ourselves. It is open to everybody and anybody. All we want you to do is come and enjoy - and come again!

“We are ordinary people just trying to create something. It is not about us - it is about creating something for everyone. It is something we know, something we like, something we grew up with,” said Mr Crawford. “If new people get into it, even better.”

Mr Crawford, 51, said there would be two new bands at this year’s festival, as well as some familiar faces.

There is more of a Midlands feel this year. Two bands, The Bar-d Wire, of Coventry, and The AC 30s, of Nuneaton, playing ska and reggae, early vintage and two-tone.

“They are joint-headliners and haven’t played the festival before.

“I am excited because the first-ever festival we did, I tried to get Bar-d Wire up here. The timing and dates meant it never came about. But we managed to get them on board this year. We have had bands from London and from the north before, but not the Midlands.”

Leeds band The Indecision return, as do Bradford-based Trenchtown and Natural Rhythm.

“The people who come to the festival from outside of Bradford say they don’t get chance to see bands from Bradford,” said Mr Crawford. “So they say they want to see what Bradford has to offer.”

There is an early-bird offer on tickets which runs until April 1. Tickets are £25, but £20 with the offer. Visit

Mr Crawford also invited businesses to support the festival. He said: “We will promote businesses and products. For us to grow and make it even better, a little bit of help could help us get to our goal of a family and community day in Bradford in the sun.”