READING’S Fringe Festival reached a record-breaking number of visitors at the ten-day event, last month.

Attendance reached the 5,000 mark for the first time in its seven-year history.

READ ALSO: Thames Valley Police Open Day in Sulhamstead is cancelled.

Organisers have cited the support of the town’s businesses, enthusiastic audiences and artist both local and international for the boom in visitors.

Ticket sales surged by 60% year-on-year to 3,750 and with free, non-ticketed events at Reading Station, The Oracle and the Broad Street Mall considered, attendance reached the 5000 mark.

READ ALSO: St Andrew’s pre-school in Caversham receives ‘outstanding’ Ofsted rating.

The Fringe took place at venues across Reading including the Purple Turtle, the Abbey Ruins, the Three Guineas, Reading Library and the Rising Sun from July 19-28.

Fringe director Zsuzsi Lindsay said: “While we always aim to grow each year, such a big increase in attendance is a real tribute to our brilliant team, volunteers, artists, venues and supporters.

“This has enabled us to reach more of Reading than ever before, as well as attracting visitors to the town.

“It has been particularly rewarding hearing from happy artists and audiences, as well as nearby businesses reporting a notable rise in footfall.

“As we always say, this is a festival for Reading by Reading and we can’t wait to build on this year’s success in 2020!”

The line-up comprised over 100 events including cabaret, comedy, film, family shows, music, talks, theatre and yoga.

Local performers such as comedian Preet Singh, singer Holly Shillito and artist Richard Bentley featured alongside national and international talent from Germany, Norway, Syria, the US and more.

For the first time the historic Reading Minster was the festival’s flagship venue, hosting performers including soul star Carleen Anderson.

Andy Briggs, general manager of The Oracle, the venue for more than a dozen sold-out events, added: “We were really excited to be involved in this year’s Fringe Festival and felt privileged to host the launch event.

“The feedback we’ve received from our shoppers is that it was a first-class event which is a real testament to the artists, partners and the Fringe team.

“The festival helped The Oracle become a cultural hub over the 10 days and we look forward to being involved again in next year’s events.”

Reading Fringe Festival 2020 will take place from July 17-26, with the programme to be announced in the spring.