Rochdale Feel Good Festival cancelled for second year

Date published: 11 June 2021

Rochdale Feel Good Festival, which had been set to take place this summer, has been cancelled for the second year in a row due to the ongoing impact of coronavirus.

Mark Widdup, director of neighbourhoods at Rochdale Borough Council said: “We are very disappointed to confirm that we have decided not to proceed with this year’s Rochdale Feel Good Festival, but I can confirm it will return on Saturday 13 August 2022.

“We have carefully considered the situation and, despite hopes that we would be able to bring the festival back this August, it has become clear that we can’t plan such a big event in these uncertain times.

"Despite the current easing of lockdown we don’t feel it would be responsible to stage the biggest event in the borough this August and encourage the huge crowds and congestion into the town centre that this festival generates both outdoors and inside all our indoor venues. It’s those big crowds and the atmosphere that helps makes the festival what it is. 

“Public safety is always our top priority and coronavirus rates in Rochdale have been amongst the highest in England over the last year, so whilst there is hope on the horizon and we are looking towards the autumn, the uncertainty for the council and our partners is too great at this moment.”   

Ben Boothman, long term festival supporter and owner of main stage sponsor The Flying Horse Hotel, said: “This is sad news for our team and for the thousands of people who look forward to it every summer, as well as the local businesses that benefit. But given the last 15 months and the pressures everyone is still under, reluctantly I think it is the right decision. Trying to plan such a big event at this moment feels a little like too much too soon, especially when quite rightly, Rochdale’s efforts are focused on reducing infections and delivering this huge vaccination effort. 

“Rest assured, work will begin behind the scenes soon to ensure that 2022 will be the most impressive Rochdale Feel Good Festival we have ever held, and we will all get back together again to enjoy the party.”

Rochdale Feel Good Festival is due to return on Saturday 13 August 2022 for a day of entertainment, food and culture.  Acts confirmed include leading northern soul band The Northern Soultrain, Manchester singer/songwriter Abbie Ozard, alternative electronic band ENTT and indie/folk duo Firewoodisland, alongside other acts and a headliner to be announced, with Rochdale favourite Dave Sweetmore hosting and DJ’ing on the main stage.

Rochdale Feel Good Festival was first held in summer 2008 and has grown to become the single biggest event on the borough’s calendar, attracting thousands of residents as well as visitors from across the north of England and beyond.

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