Victorious Festival 2021 will definitely happen say organisers

ON THE day that Victorious Festival was due to begin organisers have vowed it will return as strong as possible next year.

Friday, 28th August 2020, 6:00 am
Updated Friday, 28th August 2020, 9:41 am

This year’s event, due to be its eighth outing, was forced to cancel because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Last year it welcomed 150,000 music fans to Southsea seafront during its three days over the August bank holiday weekend.

But the festival’s founders are already looking ahead to 2021.

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The crowds at The Common Stage, Victorious 2019. Picture: Vernon Nash (250819-085)

Co-founder James Ralls said: ‘It will happen. We are certain to be going ahead, even with some things we might have to do, like limiting capacity, we’re still going to provide a service for people.

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Victorious 2020 is cancelled

‘At the moment we’re working with people in Germany and all over the place, who are putting on test shows and things like that.

‘Basically, we’re all, as an industry, sharing information and best practices. There’s all sorts of things which can be put in place, but to be honest, we’re hoping we won’t need to - we’re still a full year away.

Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds closed Victorious Festival, 2016. Picture by Paul Windsor

‘But if something does need to be put in place, then we will do it.’

Thousands who bought tickets for this year, which had headline sets scheduled from Ian Brown, The Streets and Royal Blood, have agreed to keep hold of them for next year.

The organisers are now working to put together next year’s bill, but won’t confirm any names yet.

Festival booker and co-founder Andy Marsh said: ‘The ticket retention was good, which shows it’s really become a people’s festival, so we’re now working in the industry with the artists and agents to see what bands can return.

‘Obviously some bands might not be able to because of their schedules, but we're going to try and bring back a good portion of the line-up, and some new surprises to keep it fresh.

‘We’re really excited about next year.’

James added: ‘I think that next year is probably going to be the best we've ever had. People are going to really need festivals and things like that to go to after we’ve had such a bad year - there’s going to be a pent-up demand for festivals.’

And Andy said: ‘Maybe people may be extra cautious, even in a year’s time, but like everything we do, it will be done by the book and super-safe, and will be set up so that people want to come, be safe and have a good time.’

The organisers have permission from Portsmouth City Council to hold the festival on Southsea Common until 2027. In 2017 council officers calculated the festival brings £5.8m into the local economy each year, by last year, this figure had risen to £12.5m.

Early bird tickets are on sale from today, starting at just £30 a day from victoriousfestival.co.uk.

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