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AEG pegs BST 2019 as greenest event yet

AEG Presents has introduced a series of new sustainability initiatives and community-based activities to make British Summer Time (BST) Hyde Park 2019 its most eco-friendly and inclusive yet.

BST Hyde Park returns this Friday (5 July) with an exclusive European performance from Celine Dion. Other performances over the ten-day event will come from Stevie Wonder, Barbra Streisand, Florence and the Machine and Robbie Williams.

Sustainable practices at the event include a zero waste to landfill policy, achieved through the use of biodegradable food packaging and cutlery. Heineken, BST’s drinks partner, is trialling a new plastic-free, 100% compostable paper cup. The majority of food traders (80%) will also offer meat-free options.

A post-event litter pick-up team will ensure no trace is left behind once the festival is over and a dedicated ‘Green Team’ will maximise recycling rates, introducing a new bin system to recycle previously non-recyclable plastics such as crisp packets, carrier bags and bottle caps.

Biodiesels such as hydrogenated vegetable oil (HVO) will be the fuel of choice to avoid the harmful diesel emissions produced by many live events.

Situated in the heart of London, a community impact management will be on site at BST, helping AEG to limit the effect on the local area. A four-day midweek event, Open House, will take place from Monday 8 to Thursday 11 July with movie nights, live music, street food, tennis screenings, family theatre and an ambient performance from Icelandic avant-rock band Sigur Rós.

“As a ten-day event with nearly half a million visitors each year we have a huge responsibility to deliver for our visitors, the local community and Hyde Park itself”

AEG are offering training and paid employment opportunities will be available to students at schools and universities and raising money for BST’s partner charities, including the Royal Parks charity and My Cause UK.

“We work very closely with AEG Presents to ensure our Sustainability Strategy is embedded into the British Summer Time event planning process and so we welcome the pioneering green practices being introduced this year,” says the Royal Parks head of events, Alun Mainwaring.

“As a ten-day event with nearly half a million visitors each year we have a huge responsibility to deliver for our visitors, the local community and Hyde Park itself,” comments AEG Presents senior events manager Jenny Hamada.

“We take this responsibility extremely seriously and work with our partner the Royal Parks year-round to build and implement positive initiatives.”

Another focus for the BST Hyde Park team is accessibility. AEG Presents celebrated a double win at the Outstanding Attitude Awards in March and recently receiving a gold status from Attitude is Everything for BST, the inclusivity-based music charity’s highest accolade.

Tickets for BST 2019 and more information about the festival can be found here.

 


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Festival weekend: Glasto, Lolla, Community bake in the sun

It was a scorching weekend for European festivals, as music events across the continent were bathed in sun amid a Europe-wide heatwave.

At the UK’s Glastonbury Festival, the mercury hit 31°C (88°F) on Saturday 29 June, with fans braving one of the hottest-ever days at the famed event to see acts including Liam Gallagher, Janet Jackson and headliners the Killers, who brought on Pet Shop Boys and Johnny Marr in one of the most talked-about sets of the festival.

Grime star Stormzy played a politically charged headline show on Friday, wearing a union jack-emblazoned stabproof fest and interspersing his hits with video clips discussing racial division and social inequality, while the Cure brought down the curtain on the festival last night.

Sunday at Glastonbury also saw a surprise appearance by naturalist Sir David Attenborough, who praised the festival for ditching single-use plastics this year – though the decision to do away with disposable plastic bottles was identified by many UK newspapers as the cause of up-to-hour-long queues for drinking water. (Cans of water were reportedly available for a steep £2 each.)

Sunday at Glastonbury also saw a surprise appearance by naturalist Sir David Attenborough

In a statement, Glasto refuted rumours of a water shortage, saying all bars were offering free tap water. “Water is also being given out from our info points, and we have roving teams providing water from backpacks,” it said.

Also sweltering in the summer sun was the inaugural Lollapalooza Stockholm, which welcomed 56,000 people to the Gärdet area of the Swedish capital on 28–30 June.

Mixing pop, hip hop and rock, Lolla Sweden headliners were Travis Scott and Lana Del Rey on Friday, Foo Fighters and Swedish singer-songwriter Laleh on Saturday, and Chance the Rapper and Lil Uzi Vert on Sunday.

“More than 56,000 fans have laughed, danced, eaten, drunk, hugged and experienced three days of world-class live music in beautiful Gärdet,” says organiser Live Nation Sweden. “Stockholm, and all Lolla Stockholm fans, are now officially part of the international Lolla family. This is just the beginning…”

During the festival, Roskilde becomes the fourth-biggest city in Denmark

Back in the UK, one-day Festival Republic event Community Festival celebrated its best year to date, with 35,000 people gathering in Finsbury Park, north London, for its indie-centric line-up featuring the Kooks, Blossoms, the Amazons, Gerry Cinnamon and Kate Nash.

In Denmark, Roskilde week got underway, as campers began pitching their tents for Roskilde Festival, starting with the traditional ritual of knocking down the fence before finding a camping spot on its 2.5 million square-metre site. (During the festival, Roskilde becomes the fourth-biggest city in Denmark.)

Roskilde 2019 – the 49th – begins with a show by Swedish rapper Silvana Imam on the main Orange stage on Wednesday, and continues through to Saturday 6 July, with headliners including Bob Dylan, Cardi B, Travis Scott, Robyn and The Cure.

Also beginning this week is Broadwick’s Hideout beach festival in Croatia, whose pool parties kick off today. And with temperatures in Novalja expected to remain around the 32°C (90°F) mark all week, festivalgoers are going to need all the water they can get…

 


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