Madness join The Streets and Royal Blood as headliners for Victorious Festival 2021 on Southsea Common

They headlined the Friday night the first year Victorious Festival expanded to three days.

Thursday, 25th March 2021, 6:00 am
Updated Thursday, 25th March 2021, 8:11 am

And now we can exclusively reveal that the original Nutty Boys, Madness, are returning to take the same spot at this year’s event.

The Our House and It Must Be Love hit-makers will be topping the bill on the opening night of the festival’s triumphant return to Southsea Common this August bank holiday weekend. The band are firm Portsmouth favourites, having also packed out a show at Fratton Park in 2015.

The festival was unable to take place in 2020 due to the pandemic.

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Madness at The Isle of Wight Festival. Photo by Samir Hussein/Getty Images

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But the organisers have today unveiled their line-up for this summer’s return – with many acts held over from the bill announced for 2020 before it had to be cancelled.

Madness replace former Stone Roses frontman Ian Brown, while rap stars The Streets and rock monsters Royal Blood retain their previously announced spots.

Saturday’s headliners The Streets changed the UK rap scene forever in 2002 with debut album Original Pirate Material and have continued to carve out a place in the nation’s hearts with anthems like Has It Come to This? and Dry Your Eyes.

Former Spice Girl Melanie C will keep the pop fans happy at Victorious. Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

Brighton power-duo Royal Blood make their festival debut when they close proceedings on Sunday. With their first two albums going to number one in the album charts, they’ll be hoping for a hat-trick when third album Typhoons is released next month.

Indie legend Richard Ashcroft joins Saturday’s line-up. As The Verve’s frontman he helped define the Britpop era, and is also a platinum-selling solo act.

And reformed indie heroes Supergrass will play on Sunday, with huge hits like Alright, Richard III, Moving and Pumping on Your Stereo at their disposal.

There has been a lot of buzz around Fontaines DC. Picture by Ferdy Damman/AFP via Getty Images

Feted Dublin punks Fontaines DC also join the line-up, with NME dubbing their latest album, A Hero’s Death, ‘a five-star instant classic’, expectations will be high for their set.

Meanwhile former Sporty Spice Mel C – the Spice Girl with the most successful solo career – and chart-topper Craig David will bring pop sing-alongs to the seafront.

Andy Marsh, festival director, said: ‘This year’s line-up is my personal favourite.

‘It feels like we have achieved an exciting combination of headliners, rising artists, and the return of some family favourites too.

Richard Ashcroft should prove a popular addition to the Victorious bill. Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

‘It’s been more difficult than usual to put together because no-one knew what was happening, and everyone’s got their own views and personal feelings on the situation.

‘But it’s probably about 85-90 per cent of the acts that have come back. I’m really pleased with what we’ve got so far – and there’s more to come.

‘Having Madness back is amazing – and this time they'll be on the main stage. When we had them for that first Friday in 2017, it was on The Castle Stage.

‘If you want a party started, they’re the ones to call.

‘And I’m really excited to get Richard Ashcroft, we’ve been after him for years.

‘We believe there really is something for everyone to enjoy this summer.’

The Streets will headline Saturday at Victorious Festival. Photo by Simone Joyner/Getty Images

With talk of vaccine passports for major events this summer, and other festivals already talking of making it a requirement, Andy would not be drawn one way or the other.

He said: ‘My business partner James Ralls is working with a lot of the other festivals and Sage (Scientific advisory group for emergencies), and they are looking at so many different scenarios right now.

‘We are up to date with all the latest information and we will use that to do things the safest and best way for everyone.’

Early bird tickets for Victorious Festival are on sale now, from just £30 per day (fees apply), at victoriousfestival.co.uk.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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