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Latest News

Here are the latest news stories from the festival and event industry. Please also follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Have a news story to tell? Send it to [email protected] and do add us to your press list.

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Increased Attendance And Sustainability Focus Make For A Successful Showman’s Show 2022

Increased Attendance And Sustainability Focus Make For A Successful Showman’s Show 2022

7th November 2022

  With more than 100 new exhibitors, product launches in spades and a 25 per cent increase in visitor numbers year on year, Newbury Showground was abuzz with all things event related when The Showman’s Show 2022 headed there from 19th – 20th October. Always highly anticipated as the summer event season draws to a close, this year’s show was just that little bit more spec...

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Colin Irwin

Colin Irwin

5th November 2022

…the guest could be a Parrot! Here at AFO, collectively and personally we are saddened to hear of the passing of our good friend COLIN IRWIN. I first noticed Colin in the late’ 60’s and through the ‘70’s. I was trying to make a career out of music performance and promotion, whilst Colin was a journalist with a firm eye on the English Folk scene. If your show was...

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Paris Olympics 2024

Paris Olympics 2024

4th November 2022

  Though sad, – an opportunity!  Would you believe that the French government have declared that festivals, concerts and variety shows in the summer of 2024 must be moved or even cancelled so that they do not clash with the Paris Olympic Games 2024. The reason the government have given is that all the police available in and around Paris will be busy looking after the Games and...

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Access All Areas Conference Re-Scheduled

Access All Areas Conference Re-Scheduled

2nd November 2022

The Access All Areas Conference & Awards have been re-scheduled from 10 November to 12 January 2023. The inaugural Access All Areas Conference & Awards is an event born out of the necessity to raise key issues and standards within the live events landscape, split between educational sessions delivered by industry leaders and an immersive awards ceremony. Who can enter the awards? Wheth...

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FREE ONLINE WORKSHOPS Misogyny and Sexual Harassment within the Music Industry

FREE ONLINE WORKSHOPS Misogyny and Sexual Harassment within the Music Industry

1st November 2022

FREE ONLINE WORKSHOPSMisogyny and Sexual Harassment within the Music Industry - How to engage everyone to make a change Join this free, online workshop which aims to encourage people, and support men, to engage in the discussion around the current issue of Misogyny and Sexual Harassment within the Music Industry. Join Sam & Jack from Safer Dance & Thilini from AFEM ...

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Just Because It Is Going Cold?

Just Because It Is Going Cold?

1st November 2022

Everyone knows about the North Pole and the South Pole, but a very similar area of the world could be called the Third Pole.  Now, we know it is starting to get cold here in the UK, but it is pretty cold around this Third Pole, especially at height. Global Warming has made a vast amount of difference to all three of these Poles and reminds us that we, as festival organisers, can help the d...

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Congratulations to Black Deer Festival

Congratulations to Black Deer Festival

31st October 2022

CONGRATULATIONS to BLACK DEER, who are the winners of Best Festival of the Year at the UK summit Gala Awards dinner. A super event following the very successful Event summit conference day. And a super event wins the prize.  ...

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Black Deer Award Nomination

Black Deer Award Nomination

24th October 2022

AFO wishes BLACK DEER good luck in these awards for the best festival of the year!!    ...

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Safer Spaces

Safer Spaces

21st October 2022

Our good friends at AIF have been conducting a campaign on safer spaces at festivals and events for some time now. With their blessing and some assistance, I intend to do some AFO work on safer spaces at festivals as well. So, the question is, ‘Is Your Festival Safe for your customers?’ and if so, how do you know? For instance, if situations of disturbance, violence, theft and other...

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You have to be Brave !! and Business Like

You have to be Brave !! and Business Like

20th October 2022

I have just returned from a very successful Showman's Show (thanks to the Lance brothers). There I met with some of the best infrastructure suppliers in the business and they all reported very high costs for rebuilding their stock. That in turn and with much higher transport costs will clearly lead to a big jump in the hire costs to you, the festival organisers. You can’t blame them; they...

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TicketSwap LIVE Awards Nomination

TicketSwap LIVE Awards Nomination

20th October 2022

AFO Member TicketSwap recently shared the news that they have been shortlisted in the Ticketing Service 2022 category for the inaugural LIVE Awards. Congratulations from the AFO! You can see all of the LIVE Awards categories on their website.  ...

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Beware The Rising Costs

Beware The Rising Costs

20th October 2022

It’s not just about a loaf of bread or a pint of milk that are going up in price, when you come to book your infrastructure for the 2023 festival season, which could be any time now, you are definitely going to find some rising costs. The suppliers are increasing their rental costs because of the economic climate. Their own transport, their wage bill, the import and/or manufacture of spare...

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You Left Your Tent Behind????

You Left Your Tent Behind????

19th October 2022

Throughout the rock and pop world there are a lot of conversations about tent waste, i.e., those little £25/30 tents you can buy on the high street, which some people take to festivals and at the end of the weekend just walk away and leave them behind. Tent waste has become a real scar on the landscape of the festival sustainability policy. However, there are literally hundreds of festiva...

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Improving Access to Creativity and Culture

Improving Access to Creativity and Culture

17th October 2022

Arts Council England are developing a scheme dedicated to improving access for disabled, D/deaf and neurodivergent audience members.  Their ambition is that the scheme will include a digital membership scheme for audience members and venues, training and best-practice standards for venues, and more. To ensure the scheme addresses all the needs of audience members, they are being guid...

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If you have market traders…

If you have market traders…

15th October 2022

For all of you festival organisers who book market traders at your events I strongly recommend that you engage with the National Market Traders Federation and read Market Times. This really gets you in amongst how markets work, how best to book the variety you are looking for, and most of all how to ensure that you have got the right stalls with you. You might also like to attend the Annual Gen...

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The Coronation of King Charles III

The Coronation of King Charles III

14th October 2022

This will take place on May 6 in London, of course, but according to Charles (King Charles III that is) he wants a smaller affair costing less. I am glad to hear it. For those of you who are wondering whether this will affect your festivals, in theory not, you can do what you wish to advertise the fact, you could even televise if you wish.   The latest information on Bank Holidays is tha...

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International Festival Forum

International Festival Forum

14th October 2022

Over 800 delegates from forty countries piled into the International Festival Forum (IFF) in London just a few weeks ago. Some of the world's best-known festival professionals took part in discussions, debates, panels and presentations. Interesting to note some of the points that were made. For instance, Cindy Castillo from Mad Cool suggested that festivals may have to be less fussy about who t...

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Awards Anyone?

Awards Anyone?

14th October 2022

You could have been famous! Readers of News and our emails will have noticed that we are in the middle of the conference and awards season. I recently gave AFO members an opportunity to attend Event Buyers Live, three days in a four-star hotel for free. I think only one replied. Also, your festival could have won an award. LIVE awards entries closed on 30 September, and I think only Bearded The...

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Strong focus on sustainability for Showman’s Show 2022  

Strong focus on sustainability for Showman’s Show 2022  

13th October 2022

With The Showman’s Show due to open its doors one week today, organiser Lance Show & Publications Limited has announced that there will be a strong focus on sustainability. Visitors to Newbury Showground can expect a raft of sustainable event solutions on display and the return of Vision 2025’s Sustainable Event Summit that encompasses the popular Green and Innovation Supplier Aw...

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Free Session on Diversity and CSR

Free Session on Diversity and CSR

13th October 2022

There is an upcoming EventHuddle event on Tuesday the 25th October in partnership with the EMA. It will cover CSR and Diversity within the events industry. Doors open at 08:15am with the talk starting at 09:00am and finishing at 10:00am before an hour of networking until 11:00am. There are two great speakers confirmed: Mark Green and Lowell Cabual, with other speakers soon to be announced. Ev...

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