THE 27th Otley Black Sheep Folk Festival is fast approaching - and Otley Courthouse will be in the thick of the action.

This year's festival takes place from Friday, September 21 to Sunday, September 23 and will see dozens of acts performing at at various venues around town.

The Courthouse is set to host two of the headline acts, starting on the opening night when Ashley Hutchings and his band will perform their The Origins of Fairport Convention show.

Ashley is a legend in the folk music world - with Bob Dylan among his fans - and was instrumental in helping to form Fairport Convention, Steeleye Span and The Albion Band.

He still plays bass with The Rainbow Chasers and also hosts, and plays, in the Fairport Convention show which starts at the Courthouse at 8.30pm.

Tickets cost £20 or £17 for concessions.

Then on Sunday, September 23 John Watterson will present an afternoon of music and tales with his Fake Thackray show.

John has been a fan of English singer-songwriter and poet Jake Thackray since he first saw him in 1975 and, when Jake died in 2003, John decided to create a show to preserve his memory and songs.

He has toured extensively with his Tribute to Jake Thackray production and last year toured with Fairport Convention to bring Jake's songs to a whole new audience.

Fake Thackray starts at 4.30pm and tickets cost £12.

To book tickets or find out more visit, call (01943) 467466 or pop into the Courthouse, on Courthouse Street.