Ripon rocked last night, as a large crowd massed on Market Square for an evening of music and entertainment.
The finale was a spectacular fireworks display that lit-up the night sky above the city’s elegant town hall.
Tribute acts had the audience singing along to Elton John’s ‘I’m Still Standing’ Amy Winehouse’s ‘Rehab’ and Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody‘ among many other iconic British pop songs.
In a county where Tykes are known for their care when it comes to money — the icing on the Yorkshire Day Weekend cake, was the fact that it was all for free.
The day of fun for all the family, organised by Ripon City Council, was the first large-scale event to be held in the city since the coronavirus pandemic brought an abrupt end to all public gatherings.
From 2pm until 8pm, children with their parents and grandparents had Market Square North to themselves, as two free fairground rides and a climbing wall ensured enjoyment for all families, without the need to reach into purses and pockets.
The rides were still spinning as the music started on the stage in front of Ripon Town Hall.
Freddie Cleary, singing some of his own songs and a selection of favourite tunes, was followed by the Elton John tribute act, with white piano in what was a fitting celebration of one of Britain’s best-known musical Knights.
Before the Elton John tribute did his second set, an Amy Winehouse look and sound-alike sang in the distinctive style of the late legend.
Then came the finale and a scintillating rendition of the songs made famous by rock legend Freddie Mercury.
The Queen tribute act front man had the audience wrapped in the palm of his hands, as he sang ‘Don’t Stop Me Now.’
For the citizens of Ripon, the free entertainment continues today as the fairground rides and climbing wall will be open from 10am until 4pm.
And parents who saved money on the free rides may be spending some of it at the Little Bird Artisan Market, that will be open on Market Square South from 10am until 3pm.