Find out more about the history of Going Galoshans in Inverclyde and 5 years of Galoshans Festival!

Are you going Galoshans?

The term 'Going Galoshans' has long been used by residents of Inverclyde to describe guising door to door around Hallowe’en time - dressing up and delivering a skit or play, this tradition often centred around the characters of the Galoshans story – an activity we now recognise as modern-day Trick or Treating.


In 2014, a local Inverclyde school teacher reignited the passion for Going Galoshans, encouraging a new generation to keep this lyrical local term and tradition of folk performance alive.


Subsequent Galoshans Festivals from 2014 – 2019 delivered by UZ Arts, Inverclyde Place Partnership, Beacon Arts Centre and RIG Arts have supported this resurgence in local pride with an annual programme of events, rooted in performance, creativity and community celebration.


Now in its 5th year, Galoshans Festival returns, bringing performance, creativity and community spirit to the streets of Greenock, Inverclyde with a vibrant programme of events from 25th October – 1st November 2019.

This local celebration of the Inverclyde tradition of going Galoshans for Hallowe’en fuses creativity with community, and all things scary and spooky. The festival programme includes a visual arts exhibition, audio visual & sculptural installations, street performance, creative workshops, live music, theatre and activities for young people across public spaces and venues in Greenock.


Galoshans Festival 2019 celebrates bicentenary of James Watt’s death and the 250th anniversary of Watt’s patent, in his birthplace with themes of innovation and light.

Greenock based, socially engaged arts charity RIG Arts are leading on the delivery of Galoshans Festival in collaboration with a consortium of partners who have secured funding from the National Lottery through Creative Scotland, The National Lottery Heritage Fund and EventScotland.


The Galoshans Festival consortium steer the programming of the festival, and include RIG Arts, Inverclyde Council, Beacon Arts Centre, Discover Inverclyde, Wellpark Mid-Kirk Church and Inverclyde Libraries. They are supported in delivering festival events by local partners Oak Mall, Waterfront Cinema, Scottish Fire & Rescue Service Heritage Trust, CVS Inverclyde, West College Scotland and Inverclyde Youth Music Initiative.

Galoshans Festival 2019 is sponsored by Auto-Tec Scotland, Toast Promotional Products Scotland, WBI group & 134 Steak House.


A new version of the traditional Galoshans Play, was adapted by Paul Bristow in 2016. This chapbook facsimile was created to help rekindle the tradition of "Going Galoshans" on Hallowe'en, it includes elements of the original play which would have been performed in Greenock hundreds of years ago, in addition to new sections which use folk characters and motifs specific to the Inverclyde area. The project was supported by Heritage Lottery Fund Scotland and Inverclyde Place Partnership. 

View it online here, get inspired and put on your own performance!

View Tales of the Oak for more on local folklore surrounding the Galoshans tradition and Galoshans Giants.

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