A flying astronaut whizzing through the streets of Holmfirth on a unique travelling flying machine attracted huge outdoor crowds in the September sunshine on Saturday.

The striking spectacle was part of Holmfirth Arts Festival, the town’s annual event funded mainly by Arts Council England, to bring high quality arts and culture to the public.

The street theatre by Highly Sprung Performance, with their Urban Astronaut show, was one of more than 20 acts, activities and performances over the weekend, including a triple bill comedy starring Holmfirth-born Kieran Hodgson, Pete Selwood and Seeta Wrightson, plus new music commissions by Louis Barby and Tom Holman-Sheard. 

Construction manager Neil Atkinson, who attended with his family, said of Urban Astronaut: “We have never seen anything quite like this before. It was amazing and really clever. The kids loved it.

“It seems like a long time since we attended any arts event and to see outdoor street theatre again is wonderful. It was also great to be out and about with crowds of people and experience a bit of culture.”

The crowd was also delighted to see the red arrows flying overhead at around 1.04pm on Saturday, with whoops and cries as they sped directly over the festival.

Festival director Bev Adams said: “It went really well. Last year we were forced to put the event online only due to restrictions, so it was a pleasure to see so many people enjoy the activities and performances.

“We had the Holmfirth Writers Group composing poems for people, a life-size whale entertaining children, brass bands, percussion, walks, comedy, art, music and theatre.”

On Sunday a parade took place around the town’s streets with around 200 people celebrating the rich history of Holmfirth. Scroll our gallery below. Pictures by: ALISON BELLAMY, TONY WADE and SEAN DOYLE.

Other performers included Biscuit Head and the Biscuit Badgers, Mambo Jambo, Urban Angels and Hade Edge Brass Band.