York Big Tent Ideas Festival reveals line-up

(This article was published by The Yorkshire Post)

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A major political festival in York has announced its line-up for next month, with Government Ministers and members of the Shadow Cabinet taking part in the Big Tent Festival.

The free festival sees a national conversation on politics, media, business and academia come to Yorkshire with representatives across the political divide to discuss the future of the UK.

Radix CEO, Ben Rich, said. “There really is something for everyone.”

“You can go from a discussion around the value of the City of Culture project – led by the people who are most expert in this, the Directors of the most recent and upcoming festivals – to sessions on what children really want from education and their future, told by themselves and then move on to the role of religion, playing your role with a smartphone quiz and challenging Sarah Owen MP – Shadow Minister for Faith as well as Levelling Up. And if you do feel there’s a topic that we’ve not already covered, you can always book a slot in the Speakers Corner and remind the world about it.”

The festival will include discussions covering how to make an economic success of decarbonisation, a vital industry in Yorkshire, with Julian Sturdy and the deputy leader of the Green Party, Zack Polanski.

In addition, former Health Secretary, Lord Lansley and CEO of the NHS Confederation, Matthew Taylor, will talk about how the UK can build a new social contract for the NHS.

The festival will also include events which local businesses can engage with.

Introduced by business minister Kevin Hollinrake, the “Pitch Pit” will see local entrepreneurs pitching for real investment and mentoring from the Big Tent’s Angel Investors with audience members able to show their choice and question the competitors.

Following this, science, innovation and technology minister, George Freeman, will host the “Pit Stop”, a networking and advice session for businesses.

Outside of the more political attractions, the event will also see walking tours of York, led by Invisible Cities, art workshops with an Art Wall for festival-goers to have their say and an interactive project looking at the refugee experience, led by local artist Greg McGee.

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Mason Boycott-Owen

Westminster Correspondent

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