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Third outing cements Trnsmt as Glasgow staple

The third edition of DF Concerts’ Trnsmt took place at Glasgow Green over the weekend, with headliners Stormzy, Catfish and the Bottlemen and George Ezra playing to sold-out crowds.

Around 150,000 festivalgoers descended on the event from 12 to 14 July to see acts including Lewis Capaldi, Bastille, the Snuts, Gerry Cinnamon and Years and Years. Organisers confirmed the return of the event immediately after the close of the main stage on Sunday, projecting the 2020 dates onto buildings in the centre of Glasgow.

“After three hugely successful years, Trnsmt is now an established part of Glasgow’s annual cultural calendar,” says festival director and DF Concerts chief executive Geoff Ellis.

“This year’s sold-out festival was the best yet with so many highlights. We can’t wait to return to Glasgow Green next summer for another phenomenal weekend of music.”

“Trnsmt is now an established part of Glasgow’s annual cultural calendar”

The festival was smaller in scale than the 2018 event, which took place over two consecutive weekends. A new addition to the 2019 festival came in the form of the female-only Queen Tut’s stage, which aimed “to close the gender play gap”.

Trnsmt launched in 2017, after DF Concerts put major camping festival T in the Park on hold due to “onerous site restrictions”. Ellis recently confirmed that T in the Park would not be making a return.

“It’s all about Trnsmt for us now,” states Ellis, who last year told IQ that the appetite for large-scale camping festivals in Scotland had declined.

Trnsmt also garnered the support of the local council, with Glasgow city council leader Susan Aitken naming Trnsmt an “integral part” of the city’s offering and commending the “vibrancy and enjoyment” it provides.

Trnsmt 2020 will take place from 10 to 12 July on Glasgow Green.

 


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T in the Park ‘taking a break’ in 2017

“Continued restrictions” on the T in the Park festival site at Strathallan Castle mean the event will be going on hiatus – its first in 23 years – in 2017, it announced this afternoon.

In a statement to press, the two parties behind the festival – promoter DF Concerts and commercial partner Tennent’s Lager – blamed T in the Park’s enforced move from its previous site, in a disused airfield in Balado, Kinross-shire, for the 2017 event’s postponement, saying they “need to take stock and take a year out to try to resolve the issues, so that we can once again deliver the kind of camping festival you are used to and deserve.”

In July, DF Concerts said the festival is “back on track” following a revamp of its arena, campsite and transport infrastructure for 2016 in response to problems the previous year, although it did not sell out, despite a reduction in capacity of 15,000.

The promoter’s pre-tax profits fell 42% in 2015, with DF director Geoff Ellis blaming additional costs on “the fact that we are constrained by and required to comply with onerous, inflexible full planning conditions”.

Glasgow City Council announced earlier this week it is in talks with DF Concerts about hosting a non-camping festival in the city in July.

“We’re not in control of the overall site layout, and the continued restrictions mean that the negative impact on our fans and the limitations placed on their experience is too great”

T in the Park’s full statement is below:

For over 23 years, T in the Park has been at the heart of Scotland’s music scene – with you, by our side. But for now, sadly, we need to take a break.

We launched T in the Park with one aim: to give Scottish music fans an unforgettable weekend with their friends enjoying the best acts from around the globe. And to say we achieved this together is an understatement. T in the Park has become one of the best-known, biggest and most-loved festivals in the world. When we launched back in 1994 there were only two music festivals in the UK – now there are many, and T in the Park paved the way for all that have come and gone in Scotland since. We created more than just a festival; we created a family and decades of wonderful memories.

However, the last couple of years have had their challenges. Against our will, and despite a prolonged fight, we were forced to move from Balado, Kinross, in 2015. This move was a mammoth task for the event and one that was compounded by a series of onerous site restrictions placed upon us as preparations for the event in 2015 took place.

As the build up to the festival was well underway we were informed by Scottish government ministers that we would have to apply for full planning permission due to the presence of an unregistered, but protected in law, osprey’s nest. The constraints – logistically and financially – that the resulting planning conditions put upon us are simply not workable. We tried our best to work with the pressures placed upon the site by bringing in an additional team and fixing the first-year traffic issues, but ultimately we’re not in control of the overall site layout and the continued restrictions mean that the negative impact on our fans and the limitations placed on their experience is too great.

We now need to take stock and take a year out to try to resolve the issues so that we can once again deliver the kind of camping festival you are used to and deserve.

Until the next time…

 


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Festival Focus: TITP, EDC UK, All Day Raves

T in the Park (TITP) promoter DF Concerts is confident the Scottish festival is “back on track” following the first test last weekend of its highly publicised new configuration.

TITP underwent a process of transformation for 2016 under new festival director Melvin Benn, with a more spacious arena, a larger, better-stewarded campsite and improved transport infrastructure designed to eliminate the traffic congestion and violence that plagued last year’s event.

Paying tribute to the two people who died on Friday, festival director and DF Concerts CEO Geoff Ellis says: “We had a tragic start to the event, and our thoughts are still with the families and friends.

“Over the rest of the weekend the music has been incredible, with generations of musicians coming to Strathallan to perform. From emerging acts playing their hearts out on the T Break stage to veteran rockers belting out tunes we all know and love, T in the Park continues to bring the best acts in the world to Scotland.

“I must extend a thanks to all our partners for their valued contribution to getting T in the Park back on track”

“We valued every piece of feedback fans gave us in 2015 and this year we’re delighted that they’ve enjoyed the improved arena layout. I must extend a thanks to all of our multi-agency partners – Perth & Kinross Council, Transport Scotland, Police Scotland, NHS Tayside and the Scottish Ambulance Service – for their valued contribution to getting T in the Park back on track. Special thanks also to the local community for their support – we look forward to being good neighbours for years to come.”

Although a spokeswoman for TITP declined to provide IQ with an exact figure, she did reveal that the festival failed to sell out, despite a reduction in capacity of 15,000.

The Stone Roses, Calvin Harris, Red Hot Chili Peppers and LCD Soundsystem headlined.

Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) UK 2016, Milton Keynes Bowl, Insomniac

TITP didn’t have the only festival fatalities at the weekend: A man also died at Insomniac/Festival Republic’s Electric Daisy Carnival at the Milton Keynes Bowl (65,000-cap.) on Saturday.

“We were called to Milton Keynes Bowl at 1.23am on Sunday after reports that a man in his 20s had fallen ill,” said a Thames Valley Police spokesman in a statement. “The ambulance service was called to the scene but sadly the man was later pronounced dead.”

The spokesman added that the death was “not being treated as suspicious” and directed IQ to the coroner’s office for further information. (Nothing yet.)

Basement Jaxx, Tramlines 2015, Tarquin Clark Photography

BBC Radio 1 DJ Annie Mac has partnered with promoter London Warehouse Events for the launch of The AMP (Annie Mac Presents) All Day Raves, a series of ‘mini-festivals’ taking place in Birmingham, Leeds and London in September and October.

In addition to DJ sets by Mac herself, performers include Basement Jaxx (DJ set) and Eats Everything at Tobacco Dock in London on 1 October, Groove Armada (DJ set) at Canal Mills in Leeds on 25 September and everyone’s favourite fake pirate radio station, Kurupt FM (of People Just Do Nothing fame) at Rainbow Venues in Birmingham on 24 September. (Basement Jaxx photo by Tarquin Clark Photography.)

Grandmaster Flash, Meltdown 2014, Victor Frankowski

Reading and Leeds Festivals have revealed the artists and comedians appearing on the Alternative Stage at this year’s events.

Leading the comedy line-up are Russell Howard and, in his second Reading/Leeds appearance, Bill Bailey, with Marcus BrigstockeKatherine Ryan, Lee Nelson, Sara Pascoe and Russell Kane also appearing.

Also on the bill are laugh-a-minute political commentator Owen Jones, who will slot into a kind of Jeremy Corbyn-at-Glastonbury role with his brand of left-wing politics, a Grandmaster Flash DJ set (at Leeds only – sorry, Reading) and indie club night Propaganda.

Reading and Leeds, promoted by Festival Republic, takes place from 26 to 28 August. (Grandmaster Flash photo by Victor Frankowski.)

Mysteryland 2015, Q-dance

Mysteryland was 2015’s most energy-efficient festival, according to environmental charity Julie’s Bicycle.

The Dutch dance music event reduced its energy emissions by 28% per day compared to 2014 – and by 44% since 2011 – last year through, among other things, promoting car-sharing and the use of biodiesel, providing shuttle-buses for attendees and recycling and composting 7% of its waste, earning itself a four-star Creative Green assessment from Julie’s Bicycle.

The 2016 edition of Mysteryland is headlined by Afrojack, Diplo and Martin Garrix and takes place on 27 and 28 August(Photo by Q-dance.)

 


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Two “unexplained” deaths at T in the Park

Two people have died at T in the Park.

A man and a woman lost their lives in two separate incidents – both being treated as “unexplained”, says Police Scotland – in the early hours of this morning at the three-day festival at Strathallan Castle in Perthshire, which runs until Sunday 10 July.

Geoff Ellis, CEO of festival promoter DF Concerts, says he is “shocked and saddened by today’s news” and that the festival’s “thoughts are with the families and friends at this time”. He adds that DF is “offering our full support and assistance” to the police investigation.

“We are shocked and saddened by today’s news and our thoughts are with the families and friends at this time”

A spokesman for T in the Park tells IQ “there’s nothing else we can say right now”.

The festival overhauled its arenacampsite and transport infrastructure in for 2016 under the direction of Festival Republic managing director Melvin Benn, who was brought in as executive producer after last year’s event – its first at Strathallan Castle, near Auchterarder, after moving from a disused airfield in Balado – was heavily criticised for its traffic congestion, failings on crowd control and security and repeated breaches of planning permission. A 36-year-old man, Andrew West, was found dead in the toilets last year in a similar “unexplained” incident.

 


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Reduced-capacity T in the Park 2016 to go ahead

After months of speculation triggered by Perth and Kinross Council warning in January that T in the Park would not be allowed to go ahead unless promoter DF Concerts could “demonstrate their capability to effectively manage this event in future”, Scotland’s largest music festival has been given the green light for 2016.

Councillors voted unanimously today to award the festival a one-year public entertainment licence.

T in the Park (TITP) overhauled its arenacampsite and transport infrastructure in for this year’s event under the direction of Festival Republic managing director Melvin Benn, who was brought in as executive producer after last year’s event – its first at Strathallan Castle, near Auchterarder, after moving from a disused airfield in Balado – was heavily criticised for its traffic congestion, failings on crowd control and security and repeated breaches of planning permission.

The capacity of the festival has also been cut by 15,000 from last year to 70,000 to alleviate overcrowding.

“We’ve robustly addressed the shortcomings from 2015 and have a brand new team in place with a huge amount of expertise”

Geoff Ellis, TITP festival director and CEO of DF Concerts and Events, says: “I’m delighted with the council’s decision and that they have acknowledged the significant work that has been put into ensuring that this year’s festival will be remembered for all of the right reasons: [an] incredible line-up, the best entertainment and fun with your mates.”

He also thanked “all of our partner agencies – particularly Perth and Kinross Council, Police Scotland and Transport Scotland – for their input into the planning to date”.

Benn, who is also overseeing Wireless Festival in London as it battles a legal challenge from a residents’ group, adds: “We’re delighted to have received our licence for 2016, and we’ll be happy to be judged on this year’s event. We’ve robustly addressed the shortcomings from 2015 [and] have a brand new team in place with a huge amount of expertise, and the council has recognised the sheer volume of work that has gone into this year’s planning.”

The Stone Roses, Calvin Harris, Red Hot Chili Peppers and LCD Soundsystem are headlining this year’s event.

Car and buses separated in new T in the Park transport set-up

Following previous revelations that 2016’s festival will have a reconfigured, more spacious arena and a larger, better stewarded campsite, T in the Park has concluded its trio of announcements about the new infrastructure for July’s rejuvenated event.

Improvements include separate roads for buses and cars accessing the site; a large new bus station with over 40 stands; one dedicated pick-up and drop-off point; and a number of new car parks. Each transport hub will have dedicated management teams and facilities T in the Park promoter DJ Concerts says will “ensure the comfort of festivalgoers”.

The new set-up is being managed by the T in the Park’s new traffic manager, former road police inspector Ian Martin. “The changes to the on-site transport set-up are significant,” Martin says. “We’ve not tweaked last year’s: we started with a blank piece of paper and after months of testing and liaising with our partner agencies, including Transport Scotland, Perth and Kinross Council and Police Scotland, as well as local community councils, we have a solid plan in place.

“The separated routes for buses and cars will help keep traffic moving and the bus station will make travelling with Citylink and Big Green Coach the best ways to get to and from the festival.  With an event of this scale, an element of patience will always be required when getting in and out of the site, but I can guarantee this will be of a normal level and managed by an experienced team.”

The changes are explained in a new video from the festival, embedded below:

All the new changes come as part of a major management restructuring for the festival. Festival Republic managing director Melvin Benn was brought in as executive producer after last year’s event, its first at Strathallan Castle, which was heavily was criticised for its traffic congestion, failings on crowd control and security and repeated breaches of planning permission.

The criticism culminated in January, when Perth and Kinross Council warned that the festival’s future is in jeopardy “until DF can demonstrate their capability to effectively manage this event in future”.

The Stone Roses, Calvin Harris, Red Hot Chili Peppers and LCD Soundsystem are headlining T in the Park 2016.

Bigger campsite and more changes for T in the Park 2016

DF Concerts has unveiled the latest raft of changes for its reinvigorated T in the Park 2016, announcing plans to increase the size of the campsite by over 25 per cent, a system of colour-coded camping zones manned by a 24-hour management team and the return of the quieter Citizen T campsite for campers who pledge to be “good neighbours”.

There will also be more live entertainment for campers – the Slam Tent and King Tut’s Wah Wah Tent, the latter of which will feature a silent disco and ‘time-travelling dance party’ Hot Dub Time Machine, will open exclusively for those camping on Thursday night, and a bandeoke will keep festivalgoers singing long after the main arena closes – a wider range of foot outlets and a new, more picturesque location next to Strathcallan Castle for The Residence glamping area.

All the changes are outlined in a new video from the festival, embedded below:

Last week T in the Park announced that the 2016 festival would have a bigger arena, more stewards, repositioned stages and better signage.

All the new changes come as part of a major management restructuring for the festival. Festival Republic managing director Melvin Benn was brought in as executive producer after last year’s event, its first at Strathcallan Castle, which was heavily was criticised for its traffic congestion, failings on crowd control and security and repeated breaches of planning permission.

The criticism culminated in January, when Perth and Kinross Council warned that the festival’s future is in jeopardy “until DF can demonstrate their capability to effectively manage this event in future”.

The Stone Roses, Calvin Harris, Red Hot Chili Peppers and LCD Soundsystem are headlining T in the Park 2016.

Bigger arena, more stewards for T in the Park 2016

T in the Park promoter DF Concerts has announced a major revamp to the T in the Park festival arena for 2016 in a bid to eliminate the crowd congestion and bottlenecks that plagued last year’s event.

The new design, the result of a “thorough multi-agency debrief and feedback from fans”, will “give fans significantly more space to move around and comfortably enjoy their favourite bands, meet up with friends or take time to chill out and enjoy the picturesque surroundings” of Strathallan Castle, says DF.

T in the Park 2016 will also feature a new layout – King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut Tent will have open sides to allow more festivalgoers to watch performances, while the Healthy T food area and Cocktail Cocktail bar (the former now known as as ‘TasteT’) will also be moved following fan feedback – extra signage and a new security system centred on ‘zone managers’ who will oversee increased numbers of stewards across the site.

The changes come as part of a major management restructuring for T in the Park. Festival Republic managing director Melvin Benn, who was brought in as executive producer after last year’s event, has hired a new traffic manager, Ian Martin, security manager, Colin Brown (both ex-police), and site manager, APL Events, which is also responsible for Bestival, Glastonbury, Download, Creamfields and Rockness – all changes he says have been made “with [fans’] enjoyment, comfort and safety front of mind”.

“These changes will ensure that watching the wide array of amazing artists at the stages, as well as moving around the main arena, will be a much more comfortable and a positive experience for all fans”

DF Concerts CEO and festival director Geoff Ellis says: “Our fans are our number one priority, and we’ve listened to all of their feedback from last year and now we’re putting that into action. These changes will ensure that watching the wide array of amazing artists at the stages, as well as moving around the main arena, will be a much more comfortable and a positive experience for all fans, ultimately making T in the Park 2016 a year to remember for all the right reasons: brilliant music and outstanding entertainment enjoyed with your best mates.”

T in the Park, Scotland’s biggest and most successful music festival, took place at a disused airfield in Balado, Kinross-shire, from 1994 until 2014, when safety concerns were expressed about the Forties gas pipeline which runs directly underneath the festival site. Its first year at Strathallan Castle in Perthshire was criticised for its traffic congestion – it took many attendees nine hours to leave the site – failings on crowd control and security and repeated breaches of planning permission.

In January Perth and Kinross Council warned that the future of the festival is in jeopardy “until DF can demonstrate their capability to effectively manage this event in future”.

The Stone Roses, Calvin Harris, Red Hot Chili Peppers and LCD Soundsystem are headlining T in the Park 2016.

Festival Focus: FIB, Outside Lands, Forbidden Fruit

Jess Glynne, The Coral, Soulwax and The Kills are among the 16 new acts announced earlier today for the 21st Festival Internacional de Benicàssim (FIB).

They join Rat Boy, Dan Deacon, Walking on Cars and Little Simz, local talent Zahara, LoisBaywaves and Aeries and DJs John Talabot, The Magician, Ryan Hemsworth and Mr Oizo (will Flat Eric be there too?) at the Valencian beach festival from 14 to 17 July.

Lana Del Rey, Coachella 2014, Thomas Hawk

Bonnaroo promoter Superfly will this August welcome Radiohead, Lana del Rey, Duran DuranAirBeach House and J. Cole to Golden Gate Park in San Francisco for the ninth Outside Lands.

Also performing will be LCD Soundsystem, who clearly aren’t worried about having any free time this summer, Lionel RichieThe Last Shadow Puppets and, perhaps most excitingly of all, Animal’s band from The Muppets, Dr Teeth and The Electric Mayhem(Lana del Rey photo by Thomas Hawk.)

Here’s the line-up video:

Another band for whom spare time is at a premium, Tame Impala, have also just added another event to their ever-growing list of festival commitments: Project Pabst, in Portland, Oregon. The Australian band will perform at the MusicfestNW spin-off on Sunday 28 August, while Duran Duran and Ice Cube will play the previous day.

T in the Park, whose future is looking rosy after its Scottish government grant was ruled to be legal at the end of March, added 11 new acts to its line-up over the weekend. Lightning SeedsAsh, Augustines, Sunset Sons, Alessia CaraBorns, DMA’s (with booing Noel Gallagher in tow), Vant, The Struts, The Sherlocks and JR Green will play DF Concerts’ long-running festival for its second year at Strathallan Castle in Perthshire from 8 to 10 July. (Lightning Seeds photo by Coventry City Council.)

Ian Broudie, Lightning Seeds, Godiva Festival 2014, Coventry City Council

Also adjusting to life at a new home is eco-friendly French festival We Love Green, which will move to Bois de Vincennes park in Paris this year. PJ HarveyAir, Diplo, James Blake, Hot Chip, SavagesAmon Tobin and – yes – LCD Soundsystem lead its first wave of confirmed acts.

Following the sad decline of Kilimanjaro Live’s Wakestock, there’s only one contender for the title of the UK’s premiere festival of music and watersports, and Boardmasters 2016 has the line-up to prove it: Maxïmo Park, Michael KiwanukaMy Nu Leng and Dread MC and 16 more acts have been added to a bill that already includes Deadmau5, James Bay, Chase & Status, Primal Scream, Mystery Jets, Kaiser Chiefs and Wolf Alice.

Dizzee Rascal, Rock am Ring 2013, Achim Raschka

Back in North America, Pemberton Music Festival has revealed its 2016 line-up. Performing at the HUKA Entertainment-promoted event, which takes place from 14 to 16 July in Pemberton, British Columbia, are Pearl Jam, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, The KillersSnoop Dogg, Ice Cube, FKA Twigs, Mastodon, Billy IdolGirl Talk, Savages and more.

And finally over to Ireland, where Dizzee Rascal, Katy B, Young Fathers, Bodhi, Mmoths, Steve Mason, Klingande, and The Field will play the sixth Bulmers Forbidden Fruit festival in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin, in the first weekend of July. (Dizzee Rascal photo by Achim Raschka.)

Plus, in case you missed it earlier this week – or are one of the foolish people not signed up to our essential IQ Index newsletter, which went out to 10,000 lucky subscribers earlier today – Neil Young will be rockin’ in the Nordic world at Roskilde in July