Bands are getting ready to pull out all the stops at the 30th Ealing Jazz Festival.

The festival, which started in 1985 at The Plough in Northfield Avenue, Ealing , will take place from July 23-27 in Walpole Park, Mattock Lane.

Co-founder and artistic director, Dick Esmond, said: “The strength of the festival is that it’s a truly local event, made up of people who live or have dwelt in the borough. It’s not a commercial event.

“It’s a professional festival with professional musicians, both national and international.

“Jazz is a universal art form- there’s a tremendous spirit of camaraderie.

“We always get huge crowds, we get people coming from all over the world. It’s ideal music for bringing people together.

“You can’t beat playing in your home turf.”

Mr Esmond said he is expecting between 5,000-6,000 people a day at the weekend.

There will be performances in a range of jazz styles- mainstream jazz, modern, bebop, post bebop and hard bebop, and both old and new bands will play.

The Chris Hodgkins band are kicking off the show on Wednesday. They were the first band to play in the festival’s first year, 29 years ago.

The Chris Hodgkins and Harlem Airshaft band perform.
 

Ray Gelato Giants who play jazz and r ‘n’ b are also ones to look out for on Wednesday.

Ray Gelato. Photo by John Ross.
 

The Emily Francis quartet will be doing a festival debut on Friday, and on Sunday the Paz reunion band, a jazz fusion keyboard player, will perform.

Dick Esmond’s Sound of 17 are set to close the festival as they tend to do every year.

The festival is funded by Ealing Council , and tickets are available at the gates.

Admission is £4 on Wednesday and Thursday, £5 on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and under 12s go free.

Jazz fringe events

- Tuesday (July 22): jazz and barbeque garden party at The Drayton Court Hotel in The Avenue, West Ealing, from 7pm-11pm

- Wednesday, Thursday, Friday (July 23-25): late sessions at The North Star, The Broadway, Ealing, from 10.30pm-12.30pm

- Wednesday, Thursday, Friday (July 23-25): festival extra time at The Plough in Northfield Avenue, Ealing, from 10.30-12.30pm

All fringe festivals are free.