Brighton’s independent Washed Out Fest has been postponed until 2023 over a host of COVID-19 concerns and the UK cost of living crisis.
In a statement posted on the organisers’ website, they wrote that while they were disappointed two planned editions of the festival so far have been affected by the pandemic, “this one, by far, hurts the most”. The organisers then outlined several reasons the festival has been postponed, citing rising COVID-19 numbers in the country and the threat of artists pulling out due to challenges brought on by the situation among others.
“Covid has created new challenges, artists have been dropping from bills at other festivals, which is a huge concern as we are not yet established enough as a festival to book larger bands last minute,” the organisers wrote, adding they did not believe they would be able to deliver a “value-for-money event” this year amidst a cost of living crisis that has affected ticket sales industry-wide.
Yeh this fucking sucks but we do this because we love music, so just going to crack on with 2023 as of July 1st. Lets do it
— Washed Out Fest (@washedoutfest) June 24, 2022
The organisers cited a Guardian article that illustrates how the crisis is affected festivals across the UK, with a spokesperson for the cancelled Summerfest event telling the outlet that sales had been “flatlining” as artist fees, production costs and labour have increased. He continued, “It’s a 30,000 capacity site and tickets stopped selling at around 16,000, so it wasn’t financially viable to run. Three other festivals went that same week. It’s been a domino effect.”
Ticketholders may choose to a full refund for their tickets or hold on to them for the 2023 edition of the festival. The organisers have also promised they will email ticketholders with more information next week.