Andrew Dipper

Darlington Comedy Festival 2014: the first shows revealed

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The popular comedy festival is returning to the Tees Valley in July with another eclectic programme.


Hilarity Bites Comedy Club have released details of the first shows confirmed to take place at the third annual Darlington Comedy Festival.

Starting with the regular Hilarity Bites show at The Forum on Saturday 5 July, the festival continues with an opening gala show at Darlington Civic Theatre on 8 July, to be hosted by Show Me The Funny winner Patrick Monahan.

The opening gala, which was last year headlined by Tim Vine, will feature Ideal star Seymour Mace, Rob Rouse and Rob Deering, with several other acts that are yet to be announced.

The festival then continues with a mixture of Edinburgh Fringe preview shows, shows aimed specifically at families and children, and special events including a day of comedy tours that will take place at The Head of Steam at Darlington Railway Museum.

Also included in the initial batch of shows is a special performance from comedy legend Jimmy Cricket, who will be appearing at Darlington’s Forum Music Centre on Wednesday 23 July.

Festival Director Neil Jollie said: “I’m really proud of the programme for the third annual Darlington Comedy Festival.

“There are going to be more shows at more venues than ever before, and whilst we’re retaining a mix of big name comedians and the best in local talent, we’re also looking to produce a lot of shows that are unique, such as the comedy tour of The Head of Steam at Darlington Railway Museum.

“We’re also hoping to raise plenty of money for local charities too, via the Comedy Gala at Darlington Civic Theatre, which has raised almost £20,000 for local charities over the past two years”.

Jollie added: “Things have definitely moved on this year, and we’re really pleased to be working with lots of local and national businesses that serve Darlington.

Planet Leisure of Newton Aycliffe have been particularly supportive and we’re delighted that they are the first headline sponsor of the festival, whilst securing Giggle Beats, The Northern Echo and TFM as media partners will definitely help us to spread the word of the festival to the local community.”

For information on all shows currently announced, visit

See also:

Jimmy Cricket interview
Seymour Mace interview
Patrick Monahan interview
Rob Deering review