Bella grew up in Edale in the Peak District, and now lives in Glasgow. Although the Hardy family sang in the local choir, it was a combination of her childhood love for ballad books and visits to local folk festivals that decided her future. At 13 she began performing at Cambridge and Sidmouth festivals and in 2004 reached the final of the BBC Young Folk Award, having taught herself to fiddle sing.

“...the 6Music market surely beckons for Bella. As well as reaffirming her status as a shining star in the folk scene’s firmament, With The Dawn feels like a game-changer” - fRoots

Bella released her debut album Night Visiting in 2007. One of its songs, Three Black Feathers was nominated for a BBC Folk Award. It was her first original composition, and a sign of things to come. Since then, she has been a prolific solo artist - releasing her 6th album 'With The Dawn' in 2015, collaborating on different projects with Martin Simpson, John Smith, Blue Rose Code, and Cara Luft, and winning BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards in 2012 (Best original song for Herring Girl) and 2014 (Folk singer of the year).