Music festivals in UK raise ticket prices as costs soar

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British music fans expressed dismay this week as Glastonbury announced that the cost of tickets for next year’s event will rise from £265 to £335.

Emily Eavis, co-organiser of the not-for-profit festival, said: “We have tried very hard to minimise the increase in price on the ticket but we’re facing enormous rises in the costs of running this vast show, while still recovering from the huge financial impact of two years without a festival because of Covid.”

Paul Reed, CEO of the Association of Independent Festivals (AIF), said the concern over transferring the financial burden to the consumer was shared across the sector: “Organisers are very mindful that there is a cost of living crisis. I think festivals by their very nature want to be inclusive of all parts of society, but they run with incredibly tight margins at the best of times – it can be 10% or less in terms of your potential profit margin – and costs are going up by 25%-30%, so ultimately something has to give.”

Many of the rising costs stem from the ongoing effects of Brexit and the pandemic. Supply chain issues continue; many events professionals retrained throughout the lockdown periods, meaning the available workforce is far smaller than at the beginning of 2020. With demand increasing as the festival market grows, labour costs have swelled. Even so, many festivals honoured their 2020 prices for ticketholders returning in 2021 and 2022, despite a dramatic rise in inflation in the interim.

New challenges, such as an increase in artist fees to account for higher post-pandemic touring costs, add to the financial strain. Meanwhile, fluctuating fuel prices mean that the cost of operating generators and transporting infrastructure to sites is unpredictable.

Read more via The Guardian

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