Invitation to tender for Penzance Golowan Festival

PENZANCE Town Council is inviting groups to tender for the town's much loved Golowan Festival.  The successful applicant will then be awarded a contract to manage the hugely popular annual event for the next three years, from 2019 to 2021.

Highlighting the distinctive identity of Penzance and Cornwall, Golowan is a community event that celebrates the midsummer solstice and Feast of St John.  The festival was widespread all over Cornwall until the late 19thcentury, when it featured flaming tar barrels and burning torches.  One of the last towns to lose the tradition in the 1890s, Penzance revived the festival in 1991 and it's now grown into one of the most vibrant annual events in the South West.

The week-long festival showcases local, creative talent and reinforces popular Cornish and Celtic traditions.  It culminates in the Mazey Day weekend - which sees thousands of locals and visitors, joining in the town's celebrations.  The weekend starts on the Friday with the election of the Mock Mayor and a firework display - offering a spectacular replacement of the tar barrels of yesteryear.  Mazey Day itself is  the highlight of the weekend with a major street market and colourful processions through the town centre, involving schools, community groups, bands and civil dignitaries.  Also adding to the many attractions on offer, is a fun fair running throughout the whole weekend and a Quay Fair held on the Sunday.

Penzance Town Council offers to provide a package of financial support to an incorporated community organisation in return for the delivery of core elements of the Golowan Festival 2019 between 24 June and 30 June 2019, which will then be extended to running the event for the following two years - a period of three years in total. 

Applications are sought for Golowan 2019 from groups that are CIOs (Charitable Incorporated Organisations) or CICs (Community Interest Company) - or CICs partnered with a charitable organization.  This will move toward the community aspiration that Golowan is overseen by a charitable community organisation.   

For further details and an application pack, please contact Hester Hunt, Penzance Town Clerk by emailing 

The deadline for applications is 2nd November noon.