It is a hugely-successful Huddersfield community event.

And now Slaithwaite Moonraking Festival’s On the Road to Manchester Storytelling Project is shortlisted for a national award from the British Awards for Storytelling Excellence (BASE).

Festival organisers successfully bid to the Clore Duffield Foundation for a grant to run a six-month community and education programme in Colne Valley schools.

The project became a chance for young people to get involved in the festival by exploring and experiencing storytelling through workshops and performances.

Many of the sessions created new links between the primary and high schools, libraries, community organisations and the festival.

The schools programme of storytelling workshops was delivered by Gill Bond and Andy Burton, from Satellite Arts, and Susanna Meese, from Telling Tales, running up to the 2013 Festival. They explored the telling of stories, working with words and images, incorporating shadow puppetry, poetry, lyrics and stories to involve children of all abilities.

The moon is lifted from the canal at 2013's Slaithwaite Moonraking Festival
The moon is lifted from the canal at 2013's Slaithwaite Moonraking Festival
 

The work was showcased alongside professional storytelling events as part of the festival programme, which featured Taffy Thomas; Peter Chand; M’soshi; Satellite Arts and Telling Tales

The On the Road to Manchester project was nominated by Lee Bray, a Community and Outreach worker involved in the project:

The project is nominated in the Outstanding Community Project Category and is featured on the BASE website, www.storyawards.org.uk alongside the other shortlisted nominees.

Voting for the nominated storytellers and projects is now open and will close on October 1.

Gill Bond, co-ordinator of the festival and the storytelling project said: “It is lovely to have the creative arts work that we do on a local level recognised nationally.

“We have been building the storytelling aspect of Moonraking Festival programme over a number of years, and this project enabled us to offer intensive and meaningful storytelling skills to children, young people and teachers through workshops in schools”

The Festival in February attracted 3,000 to the finale in Slaithwaite, which featured the re-enactment of the legend of smugglers raking the moon out of the canal.