Controversy has erupted weeks before the Australian event's return, with all under-18s now required to be accompanied by an adult
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All main stage performances were cancelled amid the worst weather in the Australian festival's 20-year history
By James Hanley on 22 Jul 2022
The opening day of Byron Bay’s Splendour in the Grass festival was cancelled after being hit by adverse weather.
All performances on the main stages were cancelled, including sets by Gorillaz, The Avalanches, Kacey Musgraves, DMA’s, Yungblud and Jungle, amid what has been described as the worst weather in the Australian event’s 20-year history.
The remaining two days (23-24 July) of the 50,000-cap festival in North Byron Parklands, headlined by The Strokes and Tyler, the Creator alongside acts such as Glass Animals, Liam Gallagher and Jack Harlow, are currently set to proceed as planned.
“In the interest of patron safety and in consultation with all relevant emergency services, we have decided to err on the side of caution and cancel performances on the main stages today only – Amphitheatre, Mix Up, GW McLennan and Park(lands) Stages,” says a social media post by promoters.
“All of our destination spaces (Global Village, Tipi Forest, Forum, Comedy and Science tents etc.) will remain open today for patrons who are already onsite as well as those at our satellite campground at Byron Events Farm… Day patrons are asked not to attend to the festival today while we work on repairs.”
Ticketing firm Moshtix will be contacting ticket-holders directly with refund information in the coming weeks.
Splendour in the Grass co-founder Jessica Ducrou tells the Sydney Morning Herald the decision was vital to ensure the grounds could be repaired in time for Saturday’s and Sunday’s events.
“This is definitely the worst weather that we’ve experienced at Splendour in its 20-year history,” she says. “As quickly as the mud arrives, we are doing repair works during the event and after the event to try and keep the show operating.”
As a result of the conditions, thousands of festival-goers were forced to wait up to eight hours to get into the site on Thursday night (21 July), leading the main campsite to be closed to new arrivals, with those still queueing the next morning redirected to an off-site camping ground, 13km away. The Guardian reports that free bus shuttles were provided to help people get around the sites.
The festival, which is being held for the first time since 2019, was hit by controversy before it even began after ticket-holders received an email from ticketing company Moshtix, informing them that all festival-goers under the age of 18 now have to “be accompanied by a responsible adult at all times whilst at the event and campgrounds”.
Previously, only those under the age of 16 were required to be accompanied by an adult.
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