The team behind the Black Shuck Festival in Bungay are celebrating a funding boost after they were awarded £10,000 to help stage this year’s event.

The inaugural Black Shuck Festival was held last year on August 4 – the anniversary of the fateful visit by a vicious wild dog in the Suffolk town in 1577.

That first event was more of a teaser for what the Black Shuck Festival’s artistic director, Stuart Pearson-Wright, intended to be an annual event to celebrate Bungay as the natural home for the folklore that surrounds the infamous incident.

It was funded largely through the wealth of talented musicians, artists and performers donating their time to stage the festival, and the generous donations from the audiences who attended.

But in a major boost for this year's edition, £10,000 has now been awarded through the Government’s Levelling Up Fund administered by East Suffolk Council.

This new funding enables the festival to be bigger this year, taking place from August 4 to August 5, with various events all over the town.

Beccles & Bungay Journal: Stuart Pearson-Wright, lead organiser of last year's Black Shuck FestivalStuart Pearson-Wright, lead organiser of last year's Black Shuck Festival (Image: Brittany Woodman)

Stephen Honeywood, Bungay’s Town Reeve, said: “Bungay’s Black Dog/Black Shuck legend is a renowned part of Bungay’s history and it’s great that it is being marked by the forthcoming festival.

"We look forward to welcoming visitors to the town and its festival."

Frances Betts, Bungay mayor said: “Last year the town council voted to support the development of the Black Shuck festival for the town.

"We are delighted that this year’s event can build on that and wish them all the best in the future."

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Beccles & Bungay Journal: Black Shuck festival in Bungay 2022Black Shuck festival in Bungay 2022 (Image: Brittany Woodman)

Part of this year’s festival – sponsored by Fen Farm Dairy – features an art competition called Black Shuck and Friends.  

Calls have gone out for both adults and young artists to submit work to be shown before, during and after the festival in Bells Gallery and upstairs at the Three Tuns. 

For more information on how to take part in the art exhibition or to find out more information, visit

Beccles & Bungay Journal: Last year's parade of the Black Shuck through the townLast year's parade of the Black Shuck through the town (Image: Justin Strangward)


The East Anglian legend of the Black Shuck recounts how, during a lightning storm on the evening of August 4, 1577, a wild black dog entered Bungay's St Mary's Church, attacking and killing four worshippers, and then vanishing.

The animal is said on the same evening to then have reappeared in Blythburgh, mauling more innocent people at the Holy Trinity Church where the beast was trapped, and what are said to be Black Shuck's claw marks can still be seen, burned into the surface of the front door.

Memoirs say that Bungay Church was damaged, with the tower struck by lightning and the church clock broken in pieces.

Although there is no official record of injuries caused, the churchwardens' account book mentions that two men were killed.