Comedy Fest wins the double

Dave Freak (left) and James Cook (right) pick up Birmingham Comedy Festival's two What's on Readers' Awards 2019

Dave Freak and James Cook collect Birmingham Comedy Festival’s What’s On Readers’ Awards for Best Birmingham Arts Festival and Best Midlands Arts Festival 2019

Birmingham Comedy Festival has won ‘the double’ at the What’s On Readers’ Awards 2019.

The volunteer-led unfunded festival picked up both Best Midlands Arts / Cultural Festival 2019 and Best Birmingham Arts Festival 2019.

Voted for by readers of the region-wide entertainment magazine, the long-running comedy festival beat off stiff competition from a range of other high profile events across taking place the entire region (West Midlands, Warwickshire, Staffordshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire).

Over 60,000 people voted.

The prestigious awards were collected by festival director Dave Freak and comedian James Cook.

“We’ve had an amazing 12 months. Well over 11,000 people attended festival activities last year, generating in excess of £180,000. We were also invited down to headline The British Library’s Season Of Sound, which sold out,” said Dave.

“We’d like to thank all our many supporters, including acts, venues, promoters, artists, volunteers and sponsors, who all contributed to the festival’s amazing success.”

2018’s festival opened with the EG Birmingham Comedy Festival Breaking Talent Award, and featured Joanna Lumley, Rich Hall, James Acaster, Scummy Mummies, Robin Ince, and much more, at venues across the city.

The next festival runs from Friday 3 to Sunday 14 October 2019. The full line-up will be announced over the summer.

For more information about the festival, as well as occasional one-off events, see:


About Birmingham Comedy Festival

Established in 2001, the annual festival has welcomed some of the biggest names in stand-up comedy, from Michael McIntyre and Peter Kay, to Jack Whitehall and Sarah Millican.

The festival was originally set up to highlight the city’s vibrant, but then largely unsung, comedy scene, and acts from West Midlands have always featured prominently, from Lenny Henry and Stewart Lee, to Joe Lycett and Mrs Barbara Nice, while the annual regionally-focused Breaking Talent Award was set up to recognise and support fresh and emerging talent.

Unfunded and volunteer-led, the festival is one of the biggest independent multi-site arts festivals in the region, and in 2017 was voted Best Midlands Arts Festival by readers of What’s On Magazine, and was Runner-Up in 2016.

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What's On Readers' Awards 2019


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