Newcastle’s This Is Tomorrow will not be held this year, organisers have confirmed.
The music festival, which takes place in Exhibition Park, was a sold-out event in 2021, featuring Sam Fender, Gerry Cinnamon and Dermot Kennedy as headliners. It was set to return from June 3-5 of this year, but will now be postponed until May of 2023.
Newcastle City Council has imposed new event restrictions since last year’s event, which festival producers described as “challenging”, reports the BBC. Last year, The Local Democracy Reporting Service said the festival received more than 90 complaints from neighbours in Jesmond who referred to the event as causing a “horrendous” disturbance.
Following those complaints, councillors added new strict restrictions, including limiting noise to no more than five decibels above existing background levels at the nearest homes and a nine-day per year limit on events with between 500 to 15,000 attendees.
This Is Tomorrow producers did not point to the restrictions as their reason for the cancellation however, sharing that “the recent discussion and restrictions placed on the licence for Exhibition Park are challenging, but this is not the reason we are choosing to have a year off.”
They continued: “With an oversaturated market, the ongoing economic crisis and rising costs, 2022 is the wrong year for the festival to expand further.”
Organisers also shared that they were “working on some noise modelling” ahead of 2023 so they could, “minimise any disturbance for residents and maximise the experience for festival fans”.
Those who have purchased early bird tickets will be refunded, according to the festival spokesperson, who added: “We look forward to a great festival in 2023 for the local people who attend and work on the event.”
The festival was also postponed in 2020, due to the pandemic. However upon its return in 2021, organisers put on a free version of the fest for NHS workers, staging it as “a huge thank-you to those individuals who are risking their lives to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic”.
In 2019, fans were left upset as festival headliners Foals were forced to cut their set short due to safety concerns with many attendees demanding refunds.
The festival was previously promoted by SSD Concerts, but this was handed over after former managing director Steve Davis resigned with “immediate effect” following allegations from former staff about the company in April 2021. This led to the likes of Sam Fender, IDLES, Lanterns On The Lake, Kelly Lee Owens speaking out on the issue as they announced that SSD Concerts will no longer be promoting their upcoming shows. In a statement released through their lawyers, Mr Davis and SSD said all the allegations were “without foundation and are vehemently denied”.
As reported by the BBC, questions were raised and a number of acts pulled out of This Is Tomorrow 2021 after it was reported that SSD were still involved as a sub-contractor.