As word of V Festival’s potential demise abound, Getintothis look at what we know so far.
V Festival started in the Britpop heyday of 1996. Back then, its main attractions were suitably Britpop aligned, including Pulp, Supergrass, Elastica and Sleeper.
As well as the main V Arena, the festival featured the imaginatively named Second Stage and the Dance Arena. Subsequent years saw Blur, The Prodigy, Killers, Suede, Oasis, Chemical Brothers, Muse, King of Leon and Coldplay headline. Now on paper, this is a mighty and impressive a list of headline acts as we are likely to see, but for some reason, V never got the credibility of other festivals, such as Reading or Glastonbury.
Put together by Richard Branson and Pulp’s promoters, the idea was to have a two day festival held over one weekend, in two locations with a rotating lineup. But like a little brother destined to be in the shadow of its older, cooler siblings, V was seen as lacking credibility, of not really meaning it. Perhaps the idea of a two day festival didn’t stack up well next to Glastonbury’s development into an almost week long playground and V looked lightweight in comparison.
However, V always did well. A kind of Festival Lite experience for those who thought Glastonbury too long, too dirty and too much like hard work, V proved there was an audience out there who would take to this type of festival and so became an established fixture in the summer roll call.
More recent years though have seen V struggle to sell tickets, with this year’s affair, headlined by Pink and Jay Z, offering 2 for 1 ticket deals, which is a powerful indication that things were not going well. A flirtation with Pop saw things pick up a little, although lineups including Justin Bieber and Timberlake, Calvin Harris and David Guetta can have done little to increase V’s credibility.
The latest rumours are that at least one of the 2 events will not take place in 2018. The NME and EFestivals have both reported that the Staffordshire part of the event will not take place and, while an event may still happen in the single site at Chelsmford, it may not use the V brand name. V’s owners, Festival Republic, have yet to comment, but an announcement is expected sometime in October.
It is worth pointing out that this is all still nothing more than a rumour at this stage. A spokesman for South Staffordshire said: “There is no indication whatsoever that V Festival might not happen in Staffordshire next year. V Festival is a strong and successful event for the area and we hope it will continue.”
There is more info at the Shropshire Star site.
Further details will be posted on Getintothis as they become available.