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Working for and with festivals and events, supporting live arts

What our members say



  • Steve Luscombe, DCRS

    “As a supplier the AFO Conference gives us the opportunity to meet festival and event organisers in an relaxed atmosphere.”

  • Sandra Surtees, Director Shrewsbury Folk Festival

    "The AFO conference is an opportunity to learn about all aspects of festival organising from grant applications, insurance, green issues, PRS to stewarding...the list goes on.  I've been attending for over 20 years and never fail to acquire new skills.  The chance to network in the bar and to watch showcase concerts is not to be missed and great fun.  Thanks a million."

  • Rowan Riley, Oundle International Festival

    "What a great bunch you are providing amazing resources and support, especially during these potentially devastating times."

  • Rowan Riley, Oundle International Festival

    "I cannot thank AFO enough for the tremendous expertise, support and advocacy it has provided, even before 2020's devastating time for the entire sector."

  • Lynne & Roger, Brecon Jazz Festival

    "We thoroughly enjoyed the conference, the sessions, and networking. The location, venue & accommodation were all great. The last session was unmissable, very informative and enjoyable."

  • Kim Bibby-Wilson

    "Since joining the AFO we have certainly benefited from all sorts of advice on insurance, policies and safety measures. Attending the conference is always an excellent chance to network, meet old and new friends, get ideas and hear appealing artists. In particular we feel a boost when we realise our thinking and operation, even as a relatively small volunteer-run community festival, can often be on a par with the approach of larger commercial concerns when hearing of the problems and experiences of other participants."

  • Jonathan Harvey, University of Suffolk

    "There are various industry membership groups, but I chose AFO because of its reputation for supporting its members and available resources, and as an Event Manager myself thought this is exactly what I would want from such an organisation."

  • John Wirtz, Sore Fingers Summer School

    "Just imagine how moral boosting and reassuring it is to know that the AFO are lobbying directly to government at the DCMS. They are our voice in high places."

  • John Wirtz, Sore Fingers Summer School

    "The range of advice that the AFO has published over the years is endless. Their phone lines and emails are always open, and you will be greeted by a friendly and supportive person. They know their stuff, lots of it."

  • John Wirtz, Sore Fingers Summer School

    "I really believe the AFO have played a big part in raising the standards of the UK outdoor festival scene."

  • Grand Northern Ukulele Festival

    "We have to say that we found AFO support invaluable.  It was a big fest & hard work & it succeeded because of good advice!"

  • Geoff Leon, Festival Vision / Bunkfest

    "AFO conference is about strategic issues that take several years to implement.  There is always some immediate issues and 6 months is long enough for them. It is also about networking with our colleagues in the industry, zoom is good but a drink over the bar is better."

  • Geoff Leon, Festival Vision / Bunkfest

    "Can I just thank you and the team for all you are doing for us, to say it's a difficult and challenging time is a bit of an understatement and I really appreciate the regular updates."

  • Eddie Barcan, Splendid Events

    "Since the start of the pandemic, the AFO have played a crucial role, tirelessly advocating for our industry to government and funding bodies, with proven results."

  • Chris Johnson, Shambala Festival / Kambe Events

    "AFO Conference has real integrity as an industry meeting/gathering."

  • Bob Rushton

    “Brain buzzing from AFO Conference. Some great sessions, chats, music, links and all round sense of "all being in it together"!”

  • Becky, FolkEast

    "On a more personal note, thank you for all your support, for being there at the end of the phone and for all the work AFO are doing to support all of us.  It really is much appreciated.
    On the positive side, I believe that Covid has opened up new doors and provided an opportunity to work together more closely ... long may it continue ..."

  • Alan Castle, Tenterden Folk Festival

    "Many thanks to AFO for their tireless work lobbying the Government and supporting all our festivals especially over the last 12 months."

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