Music festival should make city proud

Lancaster Music Festival. Extravaganza playing in Lancaster Library.
Lancaster Music Festival. Extravaganza playing in Lancaster Library.

On behalf of the Lancaster Music Festival team I would like to extend a very big thank you to all the people in Lancaster and Morecambe who came out in unprecedented numbers to enjoy the 2013 Lancaster Music Festival.

This was our fifth year in running this event and, although each year has built on the year before, we can safely say this year’s packed programme pretty much smashed all our expectations and targets.

That over 100 of the 160+ acts that ended up performing over just one weekend all came from our district, just goes to show what a phenomenal music scene exists here and how justly proud we can all be for living in such a unique and fabulously talented place.

I read with some dismay the letter regarding the cutting short of the wonderful Batala Samba band’s set in Market Square (we were aware of the circumstances) and I would just like to add that next year a simple re-scheduling, or relocation, of louder outdoor acts on the Saturday or scheduling performances on either the Friday or the Sunday should avoid any repeat of disappointed festival-goers and agitated vendors.

The organisers of the troupe and ourselves have already discussed this matter and I am happy to report that they are very much up for performing again next year as are we for having them.

It was a really colourful highlight to the outdoor events that can only benefit from more considerate placement by ourselves.

Our festival is designed to bring joy to everyone and we have absolutely no intention of creating a situation where market traders, who are an integral part of the Saturday afternoon atmosphere, feel they can’t trade due to noise or to cause upset to nearby shops.

Instead, we see the large increase in visitor numbers and traffic brought into Market Street as a direct benefit to traders and shops alike as I am sure most of them appreciate.

Because of the success of this year, in large part made possible due to funding from the Lancaster Business Improvement District initiative (Lancaster Unlimited) we are confident we can build on this year’s event by putting on more outdoor events, including street theatre, and particularly utilising Lancaster’s squares.

We have also been encouraged by Lancaster Castle to present a concert proposal for next year, too, which is already in process and there are several other possibilities we wish to explore including greater utilisation of Lancaster’s nightclubs and more children friendly events.

Again, thank you to everyone who helped make this year’s music festival such a joyous and well attended event.

Benjamin Ruth

Coordinator Lancaster Music Festival

Bath Street, Lancaster