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In late 2006 a bloke who would go on to become eskimosoup’s Managing Director made an off the cuff remark about someone should do something to create more live comedy in his home city in a way that was inclusive for anyone that wanted to get involved.

In early 2007 early, he went on TV to say that he was looking for people to help him make it happen with the following aims:

1)      Provide an opportunity for local people to perform, promote, host and enjoy Hull Comedy Festival without financial and other barriers.

2)      Create projects and opportunities for Hull Comedy Festival to become a vehicle to achieve social benefit.

3)      Provide revenues for businesses and venues, in particular where Hull Comedy Festival can help boost the city’s cultural and entertainment offer.


Hull Comedy Festival is East Yorkshire’s largest ticketed festival. It was founded by eskimosoup’s Managing Director as a personal challenge, though has flourished into an annual feature that will celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2017 as Hull is the UK City of Culture.

In recent years the festival was handed over and run by independent promoters unconnected to eskimosoup, however following many challenges eskimosoup has agreed to underwrite and take the festival back on for 2015 and the foreseeable future along with a newly formed steering group of volunteers.


“Being the founder of Hull Comedy Festival is one of the things I’m most proud of. When I heard about the difficulties faced last year I was gutted and instantly wanted to help in any way I could.

I’m delighted that this offer of help has been warmly received and that the team that have been running the festival in the four years that I’ve been on the side lines have agreed to stay involved.

We look to great something special each year, not least as Hull Comedy Festival will celebrate its 10th birthday in the UK City of Culture for 2017.”

John Gilbert, Managing Director of eskimosoup and Founder of Hull Comedy Festival

Ross Noble
Tim Minchin
Green helmets