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51st Sidmouth festival

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Subject: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 03:09 PM

Latest news, received via Great Western Morris....

Basically, after last night's meeting, there is definitely going to be a Festival next year. There is a working party (made up of EDDC members) looking into funding. EDDC will only put in 60,000 quid. The financial report is to be published (probably an edited version). There will be a further meeting for people interested in, and with ideas for, next year's festival.
SO, let everyone know that there will be a festival next year.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Villan
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 03:18 PM

Thats a lot of money what the problem? Isn't £60000 enough?

Good news though


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 03:31 PM

Steve Heap had said the festival needed a guaranteed contingency fund of £200,000 if it was to continue under Mrs Casey's management (see 50th and last thread).

So I guess this is about the direction the festival might go in, and its size, without Mrs Casey's management.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 03:38 PM

EDDC = East Devon District Council?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Villan
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 03:40 PM

Bloody hell, £200,000 is extracting the urine a bit isn't it.

Unbelievable. Somebody must have made a huge profit in the past.

Maybe my inexperience is showing, but where is it all spent then?

Or is it the £200,000 the income if the weather is good? If so, surely only the fixed costs should be covered. Profit shoudn't come into it. Or have I got soemthing wrong?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 04:13 PM

"...there is definitely going to be a Festival next year"

Yes, but what sort? Spies tell me that Steve Heap was not at last night's meeting because he was not invited. I know that the purpose was to assess the opinion of the townspeople on whether they wanted a festival at all. However, I fail to see the point of inviting council representatives bleating £60,000 like a stuck record and not the festival director to explain why there is a £200,000 shortfall. This is not a profit margin but a contingency fund as has been said many times. There remains that gap £140,000 to be bridged to enable a vastly experienced director and his team to stage the festival on the scale we have come to expect. Already, many artists have come up with proposals to perform free of charge next year, possibly with a guaranteed booking in future years. This is extraordinarily generous considering that their earnings scarcely come close to those of most punters. I say take a lead from the artists and do something positive to raise the cash instead of whinging about how much it is.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: treewind
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 04:18 PM

I thought we'd gone through all this before in another thread.

In an overall budget of about 750k, about 200k comes from tickets sold for the Arena shows. If it's sunny all week, there's a surplus (not a profit) if it rains all week the arean income is nil and the festival makes a big enough loss to wipe out that accumulated surplus for the last few years. It's sad but true that one week of fine weather and Rolf Harris at the arena saved the festival from going under after several poor years.

Price the season tickets to cover a rainy week and you are accused of profiteering. Price for a good week and get bad weather, you go bust.

The £200k needs to be on tap as a gurantee against the worst case. With a bit of luck it doesn't need to be used, but it hase to be available.

I guess you could scrap the arena but I suspect that on average it's a money spinner that subsidises the cost of season tickets. Anyway there's no really big concert/dance venue without it and it's probably the main attraction for some festival-goers.

Anahata


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Villan
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 04:48 PM

So the fixed costs are 750K Anahata. Thats an incredible amount.

The £200000, is that refundable? The ticket money is income, so in my opinion should not come into the equation.

Surely its the costs of artists, and other costs such as hire of the venue, insurance, security etc.

In a situation like this, surely profit has nowt to do with it. Its making sure nobody is out of pocket.

Not stirring Anahata, just trying to understand the accounting side.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Peter from ~
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 04:57 PM


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Peter from Essex
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 05:03 PM

oops...

The numbers don't sound at all unreasonable. I imagine that the £200k doesn't need to be in Steve Heap's bank account, just guaranteed until a contingency fund can be rebuild. In the longer term it must be the management who are responsible for maintaining a contingency fund.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 05:06 PM

Villan

You're right, it's about viability and size rather than profit. There's quite a lot of background information on the "50th and last" thread, which I started because I'd had an e-mail from Alan Bearman, saying that this year's festival would be the last one run by Mrs Casey, unless a contingency fund of £200,000 could be guaranteed. Given that the festival contributes about £5 million to the regional economy and keeps many local traders in business, Steve was trying to get a bigger contribution from the local business community.

It's good news that there has been a decision by EDDC that the festival should continue, because some people (especially some of those who've moved there after retirement rather than growing up there or living there for a long time) didn't want it to.

I started a new thread, because it sounds very much as though the festival will continue next year but under new management, and the way forward is still under review.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Villan
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 05:14 PM

I appreciate that Kitty and sorry for drifting away from your intended purpose.

Its just incredible money - wish I could get a bit of it for the Market Rasen Music Festival next year. Its in the pipeline. End of August 2005.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 05:16 PM

Please all take a look at my thread on the BBC Folk & Acoustic message board on the public meeting to see the offers from artists that are coming in.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Folkiedave
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 05:39 PM

If the festival goes ahead that is great news and we ought to be very thankful to Derek Schofield (who to my certain knowledge lives in Cheshire and has a very stressful job without all this). He has clearly been a great help.

It will be interesting to see what happens. I do worry about a downsized festival though. I find it hard to imagine.

Dave
www.collectorsfolk.co.uk


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 06:38 PM

I've scanned this thread and read the BBC board - they are all still playing politics.

The original 50th thread gives details of what it costs to put the festival on.

I like Simon Cares idea on how to buld the Mrs Casey charitable wet weather fund up.

Teh whole meeting smacks of political posturing by the Council (no doubt Steve has done a bit too) 60K won't touch the costs of Sidmouth and much as I have a lot of mates in the middle bar and in amongst the performers currently I would be dubious running a festival based around that.

The beauty of teh Middle bar and the Anchor the Radway and the everything else is that they are fringe events they add to the festival they are almost the anarchistic element - to build a festival around them rather than them around a festival will break what they are all about and they will loose a lot of their attraction.

What will the local traders get if the Council move to a singel site festival? Not what they get now that is for sure.

If the BBC thread is correct then why was Steve Heap not invited - if you are out to execute the king he needs to be there!!!

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Stepper
Date: 15 Jun 04 - 07:31 PM

The money being requested is only a guarantee.

I don't feel that the figures are that gastronominc in putting on a festival of this size....you just need to ask about costs of running festivals like Glastonbury, why do they have doubts periodically about that one....wet weather costs!

If we could guarantee the weather to be fine for the duration of the festival year in and year out it wouldn't be an issue would it?

As for profiteering....me thinks there is a lot of jealousy out there. We all have a right to earn ourselves a living. Steve Heap has choosen this route and we have all supported that over the years one way or another.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 06:53 AM

he figure of 60,000 is an annual figure running costs etc (actually I'm not sure what it is used for and apparently neither does ED DC which is why the want to have a committee to look into it) , the amount of £200,000 required is a contingency figure for underwriting (an occasional one off cost). The two Figures and the specific intention behind them are not related. As I have previously mentioned While Mrs C maybe trying to raise the current grant Oh Hell I've typed all this once I'm not doing it again. The current financial information available is so simplified that discussing odd figures that don't necessarily relate to each other means at this level the discussion is nigh on hypothetical. The bottom line at the moment is that the use of pejorative terms or phrases are unhelpful at best while discussions/negotiations are going forward.

fiddler I post again for the third time and nobody has even tried to come back on it is this Ive edited it down as well

It has been said
"In an overall budget of about 750k, about 200k comes from tickets sold for the Arena shows. If it's sunny all week, there's a surplus (not a profit) if it rains all week the arean income is nil and the festival makes a big enough loss to wipe out that accumulated surplus for the last few years. It's sad but true that one week of fine weather and Rolf Harris at the arena saved the festival from going under after several poor years.

Price the season tickets to cover a rainy week and you are accused of profiteering. Price for a good week and get bad weather, you go bust.

The £200k needs to be on tap as a gurantee against the worst case. With a bit of luck it doesn't need to be used, but it hase to be available."





If one excepts the rational that advance ticket sales only covers half a million which means that if we assume £150 per ticket and £50 camping that only 2500 are available (ok figures are approx and don't take into account the variations but you get the drift) This means if the other figures are to be believed that the other 37,500 that attend only buy enough tickets to raise around another quarter of a million. I realise this does not seem to make sense but at the level of public debate this is all the info we have available. Note that also, this year the attendance is reckoned to increase from 40,000 to over 60,000

Cllr


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Cllr at work
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 07:05 AM

Kitty the figure of five million is possibly not without bias, it does not specify in detail exactly who benefits from it and most importantly does not take into account what local tourism would bring in if the festival wasn't there. It would be foolish in the extreme not to realise that the festival has substantial benefits for the town but the figure of "five million" should not be carved in stone tablets. cllr


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Cllr at work
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 07:13 AM

And while Im at it... The confusion over 60K versus 200K is annoying me as the two figures do not relate specifically to each over. Or to put it another way; If the ED DC committed a contigency fund would they still be expected to provide an annual figure in addition? If the contigency figure is the sticking point then in the last few years the grant from ED DC must already have gone part way to covering a contigency. The only way the argumants make sense is if Mrs casey want the funding to continue AND they want a contigency fund in addition in which case it is not a simple case of rasing the annual amount of grant.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 09:27 AM

Go for Cllr, at work or not, your hypothesis makes sense all round!

I really get a bit fed up with the short sighted understanding (if you can have such a thing) of a lot of folk in relation to this. It seems to be more interested in knocking Mrs Casey (often in the guise of Steve Heap) rather than address the problem.

If Sidmouth gets smaller and runs for a week some of the overheads will not reduce thereby the base cost per capita goes up - simple accountancy again.

Sidmouth as it is runs at 'break even' or 'break neck' levels but as it does not raise a true profit then protection against the elements of weather!

The detail as to does the council still give 60K per annum if it underwrites the bad weather cover is small print to be agreed in smoke filled (or not these days of Pc non smoking offices) back rooms and we as supporters and punters really need to know nothing of this.

I find it interesting that a meeting as important to local traders and hosteleries can only attract a half full hall (if this is correct) and the outcomes as reported seem to confirm my position that the council seem to actually want to take over the festival - from Steve Heap's point of view he could then arrange the festival with no financial risk at all but can you imagine all the wrangling over costs and budgets and health and safety.

A couple of years back a councillor form Sidmouth volunteered as a steward - after the festival he had a number of observations to make one being that the Stewards should be declaring their ticket value against tax - there were other equally spurious ideas.....Bring on the Council then - the King is dead - long live the Queen....

Sorry not flippant cynical...

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,George Hawes
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 11:59 AM

Indeed, Councillor, but the £5M could as well be an underestimate as an overestimate . . . .

Also the stories about Sidmouth pubs taking as much money in Sidmouth week as they do in the rest of the year may well be apochrophal (ok, I can't spell) . . . .

However across the years I have had several conversations with a mix of Sidmouth traders who have said that the Festival week is a very major contribution to their overall profitability.

Slightly perversely, those traders are probably rather less affected by bad weather years than is the festival itself. The pre-booked punters (mainly and except in dire extremis) stick it out. Whereas the 'casual' visitors on whom the Festival is so dependent are also the ones who are more likely to drive to the Arena car park, spend some money in the various stalls in the showground, and go home without making much contribution to the local businesses.

(I'm not making a point on any 'side' here - just throwing a few thoughts into the mix.)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 12:08 PM

George, indeed, my point is that it is very difficult to quantify the invisable earnings that the festival provides and a more independent survey would carry more weight than one that is commissioned by the Orginisers of the festival.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 03:02 PM

George - interesting point.

From EDDC's point of view, if making a day trip to the festival is part of the general tourist experience, and one of the local attractions, it probably still benefits the local economy even if not Sidmouth traders.

OK I quoted £5 million because that was the figure quoted in the Mrs Casey e-mail last month, and it's debatable. I don't think anybody could credibly claim that pubs etc take more in Festival week than the whole of the rest of the year, but it's probably equivalent to a month's taking rather than a week's, if not more. I interpret the EDDC support for continuing the festival next year as an acknowledgment of its importance for the local community as a whole. If Monday's meeting was mainly about establishing local priorities, and whether the festival should continue at all, it's not entirely daft that Steve wasn't invited to attend.

OK, lots of people have been critical of Steve's more commercial approach and the dropping of the word "folk" from the publicity, but he's kept the festival going for a very long time. It's going to be particularly interesting to see whether the festival continues as a folk festival.......

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Folkiedave
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 03:27 PM

I suspect the figure quoted is reasonably easily arrived at and is based on those produced in the AFO report to be found at:
www.afouk.org

This is an independent report produced for the AFO by independent consultants and incidentally quoting the manager of Fields of Sidmouth. It was funded by the Arts Council of England and details the way in which spending at Folk Festivals is calculated. The money goes around more than once of course so any figures need to use a "multiplier effect" too.

I too have heard rumours of what shops and bars take during the week. I asked the landlord of one well-used pub if it was true he took 25% of his annual take during the Festival. He told me it was more like 33%! A festival I know rather well had one main supermarket whose takings during the festival week were second to the week of Christmas. (They made no contribution to the Festival BTW!!).

It may be that the people and shopkeepers of Sidmouth prefer to have less high profile events believing that other tourists will make up the shortfall in income. I doubt it very much. They and their local businesses may not even want the income. Their call and a shame for us festival goers.

As I understand the position that there is no need to put up extra cash - just to ensure that the shortfall is guaranteed in case of bad weather.

Not an unreasonable position I would have thought by Mrs. Casey's Music.

Dave
www.collectorsfolk.co.uk


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: AggieD
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 06:13 PM

I was recently talking to a client of ours who used to live in Sidmouth. He told me that it was quite true that many traders boast that they take almost half of their annual income in folk week. He also reckoned that not only do the traders mostly make a packet out of it, but so do the locals who either take in b&b guests or rent out their houses. Most of the moaners are the incomers - mostly retired folk, who don't want their peace disturbed

I don't see what everyones problem is with anyone making money from folk events. Get real. The world does not revolve around the 60's we need more than love & peace to make the world as we know it exist. We are (mostly)intelligent, financially viable people who should appreciate that these events, no matter how large or small take a lot of money to organise. If you want to go to a festival that doesn't have any organised acts, or big names, then go find one. Otherwise lets be positive, find ways that the folk world can underpin these events & move forward.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 16 Jun 04 - 06:25 PM

Hurrah Aggie, Dave at last with cllr some logical thought!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 05:16 AM

The latest!

In a joint declaration, a number of interested parties have announced a positive proposal designed to secure the future of Sidmouth International Festival in perpetuity – and to bring it home!

This follows a decision by the Festival's current promoters to end their involvement unless a sum of £200,000 can be found to guarantee against wet weather losses.

In a nutshell the new proposals are:

To accept the withdrawal of current promoters Mrs Casey Music and Director Steve Heap

To set up a Voluntary Trust (or similar) involving all interested parties to secure a sustainable Festival for the benefit of generations to come

To maintain the Festival at a similar level of size and scope to its current status

To set up a one-day conference and workshop in early Autumn 2004 to harness all the support that has been offered

To take a year out in order to set up the necessary infrastructure

To suspend the Sidmouth International Festival for the year 2005 only

To bring the Festival back with a bang in 2006

With the strains of concertina music wafting through the window of a meeting room at Knowle, Sidmouth, a number of organisations keen to see the festival continue met for two hours this morning (Friday 6 August).

Hosted by East Devon District Council, the meeting was chaired by Councillor Andrew Moulding, Portfolio Holder for Leisure, and involved Eddie Upton of Folk South West and Marilyn Tucker of the Wren Trust.

The current promoters of the Festival were not present at the talks, but will be invited to take part in the consultation process later this year.

The proposal is to set up a broad-based voluntary trust or similar, with membership extended to involve local business people, East Devon District Council, Sidmouth Town Council, Folk South West, the Wren Trust, Great Western Morris and other similar organisations, each of whom would nominate representatives to act as Trustees.

The objective of the Trust would be to create a structure for the Festival that would make it sustainable into the future and reduce its current dependency on good weather.

To allow time to build a sustainable festival, with a stronger identity and maintaining the current brand image, it was agreed not to promote a festival in 2005, but instead to work towards a full status festival in 2006.

Councillor Moulding said after the meeting: "I am absolutely delighted that we have come up with a proposal that should ensure Sidmouth has a sustainable Festival for many years to come. We are determined to ensure that the Festival we put on is the kind of festival that everyone wants and not something that is a mere shadow of the extensive and eclectic Festival that everyone knows and loves.

"East Devon District Council is totally committed to the Festival and sees this as a way forward. But we want to allow time in the very near future to consult with other interested parties to ensure they are happy with the new structure and that we can rely on their full support for this preferred way forward.

"We will be setting up a facilitated conference day and workshop in the early autumn, at which all interested parties will be invited to commit to the plan. Obviously the financial issues are at the heart of the Festival's future and this will form a crucial element of our discussions."


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 11:03 AM

So despite the first post in this thread, there defintely is NOT going to be a festival next year......Or is there?

I can't help thinking that rather a lot of time has been wasted, since Mrs Casey's first announcement was made. Time that could have been better spent ensuring that some form of festival could take place in 2005.

As this appears to be what all parties want - it seems a little strange that 2005 will not see the 51st Sidmouth Festival. This appears to be the English way of doing things (or rather of not doing them).


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: treewind
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 01:04 PM

Roger - The fact is, it takes 18 months to plan the Sidmouth festival, so anyone taking up the job or running Sidmouth 2005 in its present form would have to have started in March, which I think is before Mrs Casey even made their announcement.

Anyone taking over without all the necessary contacts and experience would likely take longer, or make a complete balls up of the 2005 festival, or at least have a very limited event.

It was expected (a few days ago) that next year's festival would consequently be very small. The difference now is that they've decided to go for full scale and use the extra time to make sure they get it right. That's the theory anyway...

Anahata


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 01:15 PM

Having just got back, a lot of people are saying that they will definitely be there next year, official festival or not. I think if as many Sidmouth lovers as possible turn up anyway it will help to save the festival from losing impetus over the gap-year. We could have a great fringe! I'll be there!

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 01:49 PM

Anahata

I take your point but how long does it take to plan not to have any event at all? And is that really possible for these people to decide that a 2005 event will not happen in some form?

If the planning to hold some form of event had been started when Mrs Casey made the initial announcement, the time could have been well-used to make the necessary contacts that will help to make any full-scale 2006 event a success. I agree with the last post, in that whether any organisers are ready or not - some form of event will almost certainly happen next year in the town. This will be a good thing too, for the reasons stated and I will be there also.

Sidmouth is too important to leave only in the hands of commercial organisers and councils. And the size of any 2005 event will not be up to them to decide but those who visit Sidmouth next year to make some music and dance. If it works - the folk may not have to depend on organisers demanding vast amounts of money and can carry on without being held to ransom.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 02:33 PM

Next year currently threatens to be a real shambles because of the uncertainty about who will turn up when, and for how long. Or what venues will be available. Neither the Theatre Bar singaround or Rosy's sessions are likely to happen, although they were magic this year.

The future of the festival shouldn't be determined just by visitors. There are different agendas here, and Sidmouth for many years has been a different festival for different people, depending what their interests are.

Steve has been running the festival as one of national cultural importance, with a particular emphasis on youth events. The performances by people like Jim Causley (who's actually from a few miles up the road) and other Shooting Roots were wonderful. So were the Sidmouth Steppers and Great Western Morris. People who live locally need to feel that it's their local festival as well as being internationally famous.


Keep an eye on the festival website - www.sidmouthfestival.org.uk.

Kitty
Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 07:41 PM

Next year currently threatens to be a real shambles-

I did say I would be there.......But would finding venues for some of the join-in events really bo so difficult? If you build it - there are many who will be willing to come.

There does not seem to be much point in looking back to the many good things that Mrs Casey have done or encouraged in the past - as this is now very much in the past. We can hope that many will reappear in the promised 2006 event and do what we can to ensure they do but that does not mean that all the other good aspects, that do not need vast sums of underwtitten, need not to happen in 2005.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 07:56 PM

http://www.sidmouthfestival.org.uk./

This is what the site that Kitty gave the URL for, is currently saying:

SIDMOUTH FESTIVAL WILL BE BACK IN 2005

To misquote a Sidmouth Folk festival booklet from years ago:
Something will happen in Sidmouth on the first week in August 2005.
It may not be clear yet what will happen or on what scale. But one thing is certain - Sidmouth Festival is
NOT going to lie down and die!

The festival may be about to end in its present form and come back in 2006 - but what about next year? A number of people who feel passionately that this very special week in Sidmouth's calendar should continue have set up this website as a first step towards securing the 2005 Sidmouth Festival.

The organisers of the annual Caribbean Night have already applied to book the arena for the night of 6 August 2005 and there are more events and ideas in the pipeline. In the coming days and weeks, we want this website to be the meeting point for all who want to see a festival in Sidmouth next year.

This will be the place where you can read about latest developments.
See you next year!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 08:42 PM

Just back from Sidmouth, and it was magic this year. All the worries about its future made this more so, if anything. "Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone..."

Pretty obviously, there'll be stuff happening next year - a sort of Interregnum Festival. I wonder if it'll be counted as the 51st Festival? I think what happens next year will be very important in helping to keep whatever is proposed for 2006 on target, and maybe provide a chance for trying out fresh ideas, and marking the fact that the festival belongs to all of us.

It should be interesting anyway. No shortage of people coming along to make music and dance and sing, likely including some contingents from overseas - which is important, because that's been a thing that has marked out Sidmouth as different from the other festivals. And I'm sure there'll be plenty of places to welcome us too.

Coordinating things so that people don't get in each others way too much, and so that people know where to go to enjoy things, that's going to be a conmplicated process, and so is stuff like ensuring that there is stuff like a solid children's programme, which won't happen just by chance. And there's the new licencing laws hanging over us too...

I'd imagine the internet should play a central part in making it possible for those things to be sorted out. Acrually that link to http://www.sidmouthfestival.org.uk./ didn't work for me, but that's the kind of thing that'll get fixed soon enough. I suspect the Mudcat could be quite significant too...

Of course it's irritating the way this whole thing was played out as an exercise in brinkmanship. And I think the whole episode is something that indicates something pretty contemptible about the people in charge of things in Devon and in England generally, regardless of their political labels. But that's hardly news, and it's not worth focussing on at this time.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Anne Croucher
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 08:48 PM

I do not go the Sidmouth to go to the Arena events - I found I needed to wear ear defenders, and the physical sensation of the sound hitting me is unpleasant even walking behind the stage.

I spend the first part of the day at the Pavilion singing in the cafe bar, at six thirty pm I try to be at the motley morris in front of The Marine, I then go to the Anchor and as long as no one is smoking I stay there all evening, or if I am forced out I go outside in the town or to the Volunteer garden.

I plan to find something similar to do next year - the Rugby Club chairman (I think he was) said that if there were people coming the parking would be available.

I found that I could have been going to workshops even though I did not have a season ticket - despite what it said in the program (Season Ticket Holders Only) I could have paid to go in. Maybe they didn't want my money - but that is not what they were saying.

From what I was told, the talks/workshops I would have liked to attend were not full, and there had been a change of policy but there was no announcement of that - how could it be announced - there is no notice board, central information point or the like. It surely can't be beyond the wit of man to set up a number of boards in suitable places - is there a local radio station? Perhaps it would oblige with some airtime for the festival and the wavelength and the times of interest could be put on a website beforehand?

Whatever happens the festival will change, but the first meeting of the revolutionary committee of the socialist republic of Sidmouth takes place in the Anchor Middle bar late in July next year.

Anne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 09:04 PM

Here's another site about all this that would be worth keeping an eye on - lots of links, and copies of press releases and such - "This is part of Sidmouth's largest website. During the summer of 2004 its prime purpose is to help disseminate information on the crisis facing the Sidmouth Festival, and to solicit ideas and support so that (it is to be hoped) the festival may continue in substantially the same form.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Phot
Date: 07 Aug 04 - 09:40 PM

Wouldn't it be great if the fringe outdid the festival, and in 2005, we had a return to the roots of the festival, the main focus of events being at Blackmoor Gardens, and all the old venues. Just a thought, or am I getting old?

Wassail!!

Chris


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 05:36 AM

Thank you McGrath of Harlow for mentioning my website (seered.co.uk) - certainly the internet will be useful to help coordinate 2005 but it would be helpful if we started with some organisation of who aims to do what and preferably without too much duplication. My website has a long history of documenting some of the 'local politics' of Sidmouth and I intend that it is kept up to date with all 'local news, politics and administration' matters relating to the 2005 festival. A lot of material from 2004 will be loaded in the next few days. SeeRed is also pretty high up the Google rankings because of its size and 'quality of text'.

However, I have little knowledge or inclination to get involved in organising who sings or dances what where and when, so maybe that side of things could become a strength of the new sidmouthfestival.org.uk site - I don't know who is behind it but the html coding is pretty slick.

Organising accommodation could be a real problem - who would take the risk of running a large campsite without public liability insurance? It is too soon to start to plan details - a few months need to elapse before we know what help if any is going to be available for 2005.

Also, someone needs to coordinate the stewards for 2005 - existing teams need to remain in contact so they can be reformed as necessary - again one central focus for this would be best.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 06:00 AM

So WHICH Fringe events are definately on for next year ?? Joe is all in favour of the New Tavern happening again and Gerry Milne and I are going for that , The Middle Bar is apparently a Go , What else is either a definate or is in the 'Possible' corner ??


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 06:01 AM

I think it would be a mistake to even think of trying to organise anything like past events for 2005. I would suggest that folk who are involved in events that they think they can continue to organise - without too much problem, just go ahead and do so. A central site where efforts could be recorded and offers of help focused - would be a good idea.

But a realistic approach about what is possible and what is not - should be the order of the day for 2005, from the start. Festvals are first about people. Accomodate them first, provide a few venues willing (and licensed) to enable some music making and dance - and see what happens.

http://www.sidmouthfestival.org.uk./


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 06:56 AM

Festivals up and down the country seem to be able to lay on camp facilities without that much difficulty. So long as there's a field available, and the people who own it are willing to make it available for a reasonable amount, I can't see that being a major difficulty.

"all the old venues - a bit of a problem with the Beach Store since they've built a hotel where it used to be. And so far as I could see, there's more music in the Blackmore Gardens in recent years than there ever used to be.

I would think there could be a realistic prospect of the people planning for 2006 helping in ensure some kinds of available facilities such as some marquees and backing for a children's festival and so forth. And perhaps the Connaught Gardens could make a come back as a venue.

Getting cranked up again for 2006, and winning back performers and punters. would be much harder if everything is allowed to lapse next year, and I doubt if that would be what they want to happen.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 07:44 AM

Landlord willing we will be running the "Ashby de la Zouch Folk Club" in the Volunteer garden on the first Friday.

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: treewind
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 08:28 AM

Drill hall ceilidhs! we should have them back!

In 2005, who's going to set up a camp site? If there's isn't some camping on a reasonable scale, then hotels, B&B and camping further away are going to be the only accommodation, and that's going to seriously limit the number of participants.

And are there going to be any booked performers?

I'll be watching developments with interest, but my focus is really going to be on the other festivals next year.

Anahata


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 11:40 AM

Malcolm Burrows' site at Salcombe Regis will be operating and so will the bus that goes up there regularly. MBS are sorting it to make sure. He also has another site near Waitrose which started this year.
Yeah Drill Hall Ceilidhs would be great. So would Beach Store singarounds but that has gone. Can't go back I'm afraid

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 12:20 PM

And the Drill Hall has been condemned for public use because it's liable to fall down...


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: treewind
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 12:32 PM

I know! Only wishful thinking and nostagia for my earlier years at Sidders when the Drill Hall ceilidhs were such a feature.

Anahata


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 01:07 PM

Lynne

Unlikely that the Volunteer will be at all folk-friendly next year.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Barden of England
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 02:15 PM

The Bedford may well be in limbo too. If there aren't many folkies staying upstairs then it's obvious that other hotel stayers won't want that music going on downstairs.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 02:54 PM

Nothing like a bit of positive thinking - and this is nothing like positive thinking.

Why not find out the answers before speculating in this negative fashion?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 03:18 PM

Sorry I've never read such a load of old B*ll*x ion a long time!

Currently the festival is being put in to the hands of a few 'locals' with a good chunk of experience but who do not have the depth of knowledge at present. I have been approached and may or may not work for them.

The Council (and I met some of the great and the good at the official opening reception this year) are still spinning politics and it will get no easier for the new captains than the old.

As for next year I have not missed for atound 20 years next year will be the first the more who turn up the more the council will use it as political mileage. I Do NOT beleive that the fringe will ever out do the main festival the two have a symbiotic relationship which cannot be broken,

Other Thoughts,

Lets stay as 'punters' who get listened too, rather than behave as aggreived shareholders / owners, of what has been until now a great and good part of our national and international culture and heritage......

Any council which can allow such an event to reach the stage it has should be frankly horse whipped, I have been thinking - Is there a case for reporting as much fact as possible to the ombudsman just to ensure that there has been no foul play - I heard rumours!!!

Thats all and sorry all for the camp site showers this year we did all we could honist - I even ended up to my elbows in water with live 240V around - it had to be done.

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 03:24 PM

Fiddler makes a good point re the fringe - It ONLY happens because the festival is there in the first place . BUT those of us who are heavily involved in the fringe are aware of this , and also feel that if there are NO Folk events at all next year , it will be even harder to make the 'Proper' Festival as good as it might be . As far as I am concerned , its a good place to meet people I dont meet any where else and it costs me money to go ,as a week NOT getting any pay is a major lump out of my income .


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 03:27 PM

Shambles

John Barden is being realistic. The hotels like the Bedford and the Royal York accommodate folkies and non-folkies, and have to consider what their residents are likely to want next August. The Bedford is more folk-friendly than the Royal York - Colin plays in the sessions, and festival events have been programmed in at the Bedford dining room, including the sublime Folk Quiz. If they have lots of residents who have come for folk music there may be sessions, but otherwise, probably not. The current staff at the Volunteer hate folk music and only tolerate it because of the extra income during the festival.

The fringe is not separate from the organised festival. All the really good fringe sessions - including the Middle Bar - have been augmented by contributions from booked guests, and the owners of the venues are aware of this, as are the participants.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 03:48 PM

I think that being realistic is best. The best option is that all aspects of the festival could continue as before - that is not going to happen. But some form of festival is.....

If the same doom and gloom is carried on (with little true basis) what is going to happen will be less than it could be. These premises are commercial undertakings. If there are people to cater for and to take money from - they will not care if these people are folkies or martians. If they wish to have the official festival business again in 2006, they will not wish to give any of this custom to their rivals in 2005.

The first thing to try and ensure is that there is accomodation for folk and their cars. The next is that there is as much continuation of the fringe events as possible. I can't see that this presents huge difficulties, unless one is determined to find them.

If nothing else happens but the music and dancing on the seafront - it will be better than many organised festivals are. That is the special part of Sidmouth festivals and is the base from which everything else can be built on to.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 04:38 PM

The current staff at the Volunteer hate folk music

God, it must have been hell for them last week... Though the bar takings would have gone a long way to reconcile the landlard to the suffering involved.

I don't think the term "fringe" is really the right term for the unticketed events. "Core" might be closer to the truth of it, especially when the unticketed dancing events are included.

"...the more who turn up the more the council will use it as political mileage. I take it that means that if a lot of people turn up to an Interrgregum Festival next year this would reduce the pressures on the council (East Devon Council that would be? Or Sidmouth Town Council?) - to pull out the stops the following year for a full-scale relaunch? With the implication being that going along next year would be sort of black-legging?

I'd like to see that notion discussed a bit, but I'd need some convincing, because I think it'd be more likely to work the other way round.

But if it better to stay away, maybe the way to go would be to try to organise a "Boycott Sidmouth till the Festival is back" campaign, perhaps with folk pickets throughout the season... And a Sidmouth in Exile somewhere else for Festival Week...


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 04:52 PM

Mc Grath, sometimes you wind me up a treat - but waht a bl**dy good Idea!

Sidders in Exile!

Now that has appeal.

In the midst of this no doubt there are faults on both sides of the council and Mrs C but it should never have come to this point and the council could have done a lot more to assist.

yes

brilliant

That would be positive

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Barden of England
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 05:17 PM

I've already booked my hotel for next year, so I'm staying positive. but Colin at the Bedford must of course consider his options for next year. He has asked me to keep in touch as he, Bev and the staff at the Bedford look forward to festival week, and not only for the money it brings in as I know they thoroughly enjoy what we all do.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 05:24 PM

I thnk that many will suffer badly for the stupidity of the few


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Anne Croucher
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 05:35 PM

The people at the Volunteer actually apologised that the lounge bar was too noisy to have singing in there when there was music in the other bar, and explained that they could not have any official events in the garden as the neighbours complained last year - but they did encourge unofficial playing and singing.

Even if folk is not their scene they do make an effort with the tents in the garden etc.

The motley morris should be happening on the promenade in front of The Marine as usual next year.

If some hotels want to discourage an event next year then I am sure there will be others which will take in those determined to carry on as long as folk people making bookings make it clear what they are coming to Sidmouth for.

Anne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 08 Aug 04 - 08:09 PM

For the benefit of people who did not attend Sidmouth 2004 I have loaded copies of some of the leaflets that were circulating. In particular I recommend everyone studies and contemplates www.seered.co.uk/folk26a.htm. It may be elsewhere on the web - I don't know. There are ten other new pages loaded tonight, mainly for historical record.

This may work if I do it right ...http://www.seered.co.uk/folk26a.htm

I would hate to see Sidmouth deliberately avoided by folkies for a year but it might teach a few people a much needed lesson in nurturing what is most valuable.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 01:43 AM

I would hate to see Sidmouth deliberately avoided by folkies for a year but it might teach a few people a much needed lesson in nurturing what is most valuable.

The cutting off of one's nose to spite one's face is an option - but Sidmouth is a holiday resort town and will have visitors next year. Even if you somehow prevent any folkies from adding to this in 2005, it will be difficult to make such a gesture an effective one. Anyone is still as free to choose to enter Sidmouth as they were when Mrs Casey appeared to have preferred to have charged everyone for a festival ticket.

There are village festivals where it would be immediately apperent that folkies had made a concerted point of staying away, but this would never be the case in Sidmouth. However, no one is expecting big name bands and overseas dance troupes, so there will be considerable less folkies in the town anyway and the effect of this, will be felt and noticed.

But who would be most affected by such a gesture? The commercial organiers of the past festivals have gone and the council, if it has not yet felt the full force of the lesson they need to learn, will soon find out. But what is gone is gone, the future is what matters and finding a way that the Sidmouth tradition can always ontinue in the face of such incompetence on the part of the council and whoever - is what matters now.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 01:50 AM

The following (from Steve's fine website) is probably the best action to ensure that the local council are aware of your feelings.

If you are a Festival-goer from out of town:

Write to EDDC (David Pagett, Head of Leisure, EDDC, The Knowle, Sidmouth. EX1O 8HL) telling them what you think of the Festival and their plans to have a 'down-sized' fringe festival next year.

Also write to Cllr Anne Liverton (Chairman) and Cllr Andrew Moulding (Portfolio holder for Leisure) at the same address.

Also tell them all how much you spend in the town during the Festival.

Make sure local shops know that you are a Festival visitor.

Write to your local MP

Write to Rt Hon Tessa Jowell, Secretary of State, Culture Media and Sport, 2-4 Cockspur St, London SW1Y 5DH.

(a Festival goer at 134 Gilbert Rd, Cambridge, CB4 3PB has started a petition and has a standard letter on which you can base your own letter).


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 02:56 AM

Devon councils do seem to be putting their foot in it. See the following thread for the antics of those in North Devon.

The Dangerous Doo Dah Band


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 05:53 AM

On one of the mudcat threads (not this one) I posted comments about the much discussd crackdown on traders along the Esplanade during the 50th Sidmouth festival. In the event the crackdown was a damp squib - and probably for two reasons. First, part of the reason for having it was to try and show Steve Heap that some of his concerns were being taken seriously (for a change) but as the festival got under way a decision to exclude Mrs Casey's Music from future Sidmouth events had already probably been taken and secondly, it turned out that having a valid pedlars' licence overrides the council byelaws. What a hoot. Read all about it at http://www.seered.co.uk/folk28a.htm

I agree that any kind of a boycott of Sidmouth would be ineffective and maybe foolish. There were as many people on the beach and almost as many in the town during the weekend after folk week as there were during the week. Part of the reason is that many local people avoid the town altogether during folk week and make up for it immedaitely afterwards. It was standing room only in Waitrose on the Sunday.

Writing to MPs etc at the present time would be ineffective - they generally only take notice of dozens of letters on a topic and a coordinated effort to secure Arts Council funding for the new Trust set up to run the Festival (if that is what happens) might be a better use of lobbying effort.

For now, let the dust settle, let the meetings at EDDC in August/September take place and see how the land lies then.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 02:33 PM

I agree with Steve about it being a mistake to try lobbying MPs along the lines suggested earlier in that press release Shambles quoted. Things have moved on.

There needs to be some system for protecting successful festivals from going under because of quirks in the way the local tax system works - as demonstrated in Sidmouth, where the viability of a festival bringing millions of pounds into the local economy has been threatened because of the need for a relatively small sum to cover against the vagaries of the weather.

Now we've got Edinburgh Festival apparently under threat for the same kind of reason - not the weather, but the fact that most of the money brought in by the festival never reaches anybody who has anything to do with running or financing the festival, so there's a shortfall. While it wouldn't worry me much if Edinburgh went belly-up, it's got a powerful lobby of supporters, and I think that could provide an opening for effective lobbying which could help protect Sidmouth, among others.

I'd like to see some serious proposals for a system of financial support that would protect important cultural events - and Sidmouth is definitely one such. And I think that if Edinburgh is under serious threat that could prove the catalyst to developing such a system.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 02:37 PM

What about letters to the local press? The Sidmouth Herald, is it?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 03:09 PM

McG I think this is a good idea BUT we should look at first getting Sidmouth back on the map and protected. Other festivals do have the same problems but if we spread our efforts then we may find that we are spread too thinly in both areas, ergo, Sidmouth must come first.

We must also guard against Heap focussing and criticism, the festival was saved by him and he more than ably fulfilled his brief from teh council to make the festival more commercial.

Focus should be on where we go now, but a charitable trust hiring (and Mrs Casey has been listed as a possiblity) a third party to stage the festival to their brief at a fee is not dissimilar (indeed exactly the same as the current situation!

All the pieces have been moved around on teh chess board and whilst there is no winner there is currently no looser but there is a year without a festival.

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 03:21 PM

Well, of course, this wasn't the 50th Sidmouth festival to the extent that it moved to Exmouth for 2 years in the early days. And came back, because Sidmouth is just a nicer, more intimate, place to have a festival!

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 03:23 PM

So who's been reading the new book then Kitty *G*


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Aug 04 - 03:54 PM

" if we spread our efforts then we may find that we are spread too thinly in both areas, ergo, Sidmouth must come first."

True enough, in the sense that Sidmouth matters (to me and a lot of people)in the way that a lot of others don't. But when it comes to national lobbying via MPs (rather than to the local councils), arguing for special help for Sidmouth is likely to backfire - "but if we have this kind of help for Sidmouth, everyone would be asking for it" is the inevitable response. So asking for something that would be less specifically aimed at Sidmouth, but which would help Sidmouth, makes sense.

Quite what that something would be I'm not too sure. But no doubt it'll emerge in the course of arguments.

My basic assumption is that societies need festivals and celebrations, and that relying on market forces to supply them is a surefire way of extinguishing and distorting them. And the same goes for having them organised and funded centrally.

Some kind of hands-off resources on which organisers can draw on in certain circumstances to protect events which are valued and popular and essentially viable, but under threat for peripheral reasons, that's what is needed. Maybe a chunk of lottery money could be set aside to be available for this kind of thing.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 10 Aug 04 - 04:43 PM

I'm still finding it impossible to get that link http://www.sidmouthfestival.org.uk./, or for that matter http://www.sidmouthfestival.org.uk/, on either Firefox, Internet Explorer or Opera.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,jethro
Date: 11 Aug 04 - 08:09 AM

Hmmm - www.sidmouthfestivals.org.uk does a redirect to www.sidmouthfestivals.info/ - this worked yesterday - but today seems to want to bounce to something like www.devoncarnivals.com which can't be found. Someone out there not ensuring URL persistence :-)

Oh - and the book is fabulous and, to me, worth every penny.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Derek
Date: 14 Aug 04 - 01:49 PM

www.sidmouthfestival.org.uk has been put up by Stuart Hughes who is a local councillor and currently organises the Caribbean Carnival on the Saturday the festival finishes using the infrastructure at the Arena. In turn this helps fund the Autumn and Christmas carnivals. It is rumoured that he earns part of his income from the Caribbean event. He has put in a bid to run Arena style events in 2005 - these would not necessarily be folk music based. This website has NOTHING to do with the current initiative to relaunch the festival in 2006 and NOTHING to do with the various fringe events planned for 2005.
Derek Schofield


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 14 Aug 04 - 02:35 PM

This one still seems to be the most reliable source of information about the state of play.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Scooby Doo
Date: 14 Aug 04 - 02:50 PM

i believe your absolutely right on this issue.Its a insight on everything from litter pickings to how much goes people of Sidmouth detest the "invasion" of us folkies,who might have very respectable jobs in the City and beyond.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 14 Aug 04 - 03:20 PM

Derek - thanks for the info. Stuart's website address was, of course, published in the Sidmouth Herald on 6 August.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 14 Aug 04 - 04:41 PM

Thank you for kind comments about www.seered.co.uk. I shall continue to endeavour to ensure it is up to date and reliable. You are right to be wary of Cllr Stuart 'lunatic' Hughes. There is more about him and his cowardly behaviour on the older pages of SeeRed - try the page on traffic signals.

I was always suspicious of the motives of sidmouthfestival.org.uk. In the latest Sidmouth Herald, Bill Lankester, President of the Friends of the Festival, warns against taking up the Hughes idea of lots of 'pop and rock' groups playing in the arena next year. This would be for the greater glory of Hughes - primarily. There are indeed issues relating to where tens of thousands of pounds go that are collected in cash in Sidmouth but this is not the place to pursue them.

In any case, it would take a professional lunatic to suggest concentrating events for 2005 in the very place most subject to wet weather - remember what brought the festival to its knees? Events in 2005 need to be as certain as possible and that probably means avoiding use of the Arena.

As far as folk related letters in the press etc go, I will publish updates on SeeRed as soon as I can (my antique computer permitting), perhaps by early next week.

In the meantime I am pursuing with EDDC whether they will give an early promise of some funding for infrastructure for 2005 - say a marquee on Church House Lawn for dancing and kids stuff, and underwrite the public liability insurance for the campsite - for example. It is all very well lots of people here and on eceilidh lists making plans to come to Sidmouth but without infrastructure and agreement of who uses what when, it will be a chaotic week that will do image no good at all.

If someone could copy this to the eceilidh list run by Steve Harris - if it is sufficiently 'on topic' - I would be grateful. I left the list to prevent my inbox overflowing!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 14 Aug 04 - 08:08 PM

"...say a marquee on Church House Lawn for dancing and kids stuff"

If there's only one marquee I think the place that should be would be in the Blackmore Gardens, which is a lot safer for kids, and has room for outside stuff as well. I think having a safe kids scheme is an important element in allowing lots of other things to happen, such as sessions.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 15 Aug 04 - 06:46 PM

Taking things a littel sceptically, slowly and taking a step back form the front line - I would reccomend we all sit back and examine the fact that Steve from Sidmouth on his seered site seems to be the worlds leading expert on absolutely everything - as the web site shows - makes the young Tony Benn look like a a loud mouthed Red Tory rather than a what he was!

That being said - he does seem to keep his web site fairly current BUT can he / will he guarantee us he will publish both for and against views - rather than only those which serve his particular angle, which appears to be criticism of the Local Council at all oportunities - which could make him a very inefective local ally?

I am being very circumspect here and not intending to 'throw muck' around Steve = This site seems to good to bew true and if so how come he did not inform us all of what was going on a lot earlier.....

I think you all know I am on old sceptic - thats all....


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 16 Aug 04 - 09:44 AM

Fiddler asked : This site (SeeRed) seems too good to be true and if so, how come he did not inform us all of what was going on a lot earlier?

Reply: The first public announcement was the press release of May 2004 from Mrs Casey Music. Councillors knew what was likely to happen back in February 2004, because Steve Heap had told them then. The Peter Mason report was commissioned even earlier (if you believe some dates), as early as Autumn 2003.

Until May 2004 and the subsequent Town Meeting in June there was no perceived reason to extend my website to cover the 'folk festival' issue. When the need did arise this was done and the first 20 or so pages were loaded within a few days. It will be kept up to date usually with a delay of only a few days. It already contains a full range of views about the festival and will continue to do so.

The SeeRed site is about far more than the Festival - the latest addition is an article on recycling I wrote for a local environmental charity. Comments welcome. You will find the link on the index page or try this http://www.seered.co.uk/recycling.htm


There is concern that the festival image should not be sullied by whatever happens in 2005. The potential income from a week of concerts in the Arena (which I think is a not a particularly good idea for reasons already stated) is around £250,000. Any net profits (maybe as high as £200,000 if the venue is made available by EDDC for free and if the weather stays fine all week?) should be invested for the good of future folk festivals and all monies taken etc should be totally under the independent control of people not connected with any particular councillor or other individual. If such an 'arena centred' event had been held this week it would have been a wash-out.

A few more pages have been added to the folk section of SeeRed - nothing very exciting but starting here ...http://www.seered.co.uk/folk36.htm

I said some time ago the dust needed to settle now. My own view is in the long term it should be folk people who run the festival not EDDC. EDDC should simply give some money (or free venues) and watch it happen.

Problem is, could anyone make it work as well or better than Steve Heap and his experienced team?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 16 Aug 04 - 01:28 PM


Problem is, could anyone make it work as well or better than Steve Heap and his experienced team? >

I teally think you have to look wider than that. One of the problems is that the festival was offering less and less to the ordinaty people of Sidmouth and the traders. A friend of mine talked to people in the town last week and they were extremely relieved that the festival was over. Many of the usual shop customers keep out of Sidmouth during folk week. The pleas to join the patrons scheme were extremely badly received.

There is no way that EDDC are going to sign a cheque and retire to a comfy chair.

Those who want to see the festival proseper need to give serious attention to how to make the whole proposition more attractive to the town. No, buying the occasional pint at a town pub isn't enough!

And why not send morris sides and other entertainers round to every rest home as I believe happened years ago? Those people hove votes!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 16 Aug 04 - 03:53 PM

So there is a venue - there are acts that folk (sorry about the pun) want to see there is a 200K profit = Mrs Casey then MUST have been getting it wrong!!!

Is this profit after all the stewards have been paid, the health and safety and fire precautions attended too - oops forgot temporary electrics and insurance - possibly a bar licence and staff to run it plus advertising to ensure there is a full house every night - where will all these people stay?

Oh yes and will it fall under the Pop festival and similar gatherings Act which dictates many more aspects that need to be attended too beyond those listed above - Disaster planning, first aid cover - the list is endless -

However I am sure you all know exactly what is involved.

There is a publicly declared no festival in 2005 by the council and a consortium examining a plan from there forwards. Perhaps it is not I'd need to be convinced by the proposal of a tent in Blackmore Gardens!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Scumalash a celtic band from Canada
Date: 23 Aug 04 - 08:26 PM

We had a great tme at the Sidmouth festival...we were treated very well. The town and festival grounds were kept so clean. The esplanade was busy with happy people. We will never forget our experience. Our music was much appreciated.. Well done, Sidmouth,especially Alan Bearman and all the other people who made this festival so successful. Hopefully the festival will not die at this stage....carry on!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Another Festival Organiser
Date: 25 Aug 04 - 11:01 PM

As someone who organises festivals elsewhere in the UK and has often attended the Sidmouth Festival, I've read all the threads above with interest.

I very much hope the Festival continues in 2005 as experience elsewhere in the UK suggests that if there is a 'gap' year then it can often prove fatal - sponsors, helpers, suppliers, traders and audiences all discover attractions elsewhere and never return in such great numbers again.

That said, I would echo the comment from Steve Harris:

"Could anyone make it work as well or better than Steve Heap and his experienced team?"

No other experienced Festival organiser that I know of will touch it. We all believe that if Steve Heap can't make it work, nobody can.

To those who think otherwise, I wish you well but I fear from reading the threads above that many simply have no idea just how great the costs of staging even a reduced-size Sidmouth will be... how much time it will take to organise... or how stringent the rules relating to Health & Safety, Insurance and Licensing now are.

Any event will require a Public Entertainment Licence and, before granting the Licence, the Council will require at least £10 million Public Liability Insurance, full Risk Assessments for all venues (and campsites), the appointment of qualified Safety Officers, a Noise Management Plan, Event Management Plan, proven knowledge of the Event Safety Guide etc. etc. etc.

The days when you could just turn-up and dance on the Prom are long gone.

Even if someone can provide all the above there is still the little matter of needing sufficient funding to cover all costs, including a 'reserve' of around £250,000 in case of bad weather, the very issue that has forced Steve Heap to withdraw in the first place.

I hope the Festival survives for it is far too good to lose, but I hope anyone thinking of organising it knows just what they are taking on.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Aug 04 - 05:24 PM


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart
Date: 27 Aug 04 - 05:43 PM

Lets set the record straight regarding Sidmouth 2005 and beyond.
As Chairman of Caribbean Night I earn nothing from the event, it is purely run as a way of raising funding to stage the town's two carnival processions.
Derek should get all his facts right.
The Caribbean Night has run for 22 years and is a well established event. We as a small committee have worked in partnership with Steve Heap paying for ALL the equipment that we require to run the event. This also has helped the Festival organisers as we pay a considerable amount towards transporting the equipment brought in for the festival away from the Arena.
This year we also made a four figured contribution towards the provision of the portable roadway through the arena and sponsored the Yetties. WE ARE COMMITTED TO SEEING A FESTIVAL CONTINUE IN SIDMOUTH and are indeed working towards this goal.
We have put our money where our mouths are and have put in a submission to East Devon District Council for the use of the Arena in 2005 to stage a series of Folk concerts including hopefully Show Of Hands, Kieran Halpin (who last appeared in Sidmouth in the late 80's) The Strawbs who have local connections. The Battlefield Band to name just a few of the artistes.
The Caribbean Night would take place on the Saturday following the Festival.
Any profit made will go towards the carnivals,local organisations that help at the Arena during the week and towards staging the 2006 event.
This hopefully has put the record straight.

Stuart Hughes


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart
Date: 27 Aug 04 - 05:49 PM

One thing I forgot to mention.
We have offered our website to Bill Lankaster as a way of conveying the message to everyone in the folk fraternity re Sidmouth Fringe 05 and this has been accepted. Sidmouth will pull together to make it happen. Goto
www.sidmouthfestival.org.uk


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Jood
Date: 06 Sep 04 - 07:45 PM

I'm writing from Vancouver, Canada and I've read this thread and the one before it. My husband and I are folk dancers, musicians and singers in the traditions of England. We have been to Sidmouth twice in the last ten years, and we would go every year if we could afford it. For many of us folkies over here, Sidmouth is like Mecca is to Muslims, or the Vatican to Catholics. Going there is like a personal musical pilgrimage, and requires as much sacrifice, especially if you're not wealthy. I am horrified that the British government isn't funding this National Treasure that is Sidmouth. There is no other festival like it. All the others are performance festivals. At Sidmouth, you share and learn and participate. And the focus on youth has been brilliant. Every time we have gone to Sidmouth, we have returned home with armfuls of new tunes, dances, songs, contacts, CD's, information, skills, and a renewed enthusiasm that lasts for years. The British government under the auspices of the Dept of Culture, Media and Sport, needs to be nurturing this unique festival, and guaranteeing it's continuing existence. I know that there are lots of arguments against getting government funding, but I think you could consider it. My cousin is spearheading a letter-writing campaign to Tessa Jowell, and I am using the net to alert the folkies over here, who don't already know, that Sidmouth is in peril, and asking them to write to Ms Jowell and to the other political bodies involved. Please know, all of you, that although we are too far away to help on a practical level, Sidmouth is very important to us in the wilds of the colonies, and we want it to continue. In fact, we can't imagine it not being there. When I told a young folkie friend of mine that it was threatened, he said he was very disheartened, as he had always planned to go there one day. See what I mean? If anyone has any other ideas how we over here can help, please let me know, I will follow this thread discussion avidly.

Jooood


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: vectis
Date: 07 Sep 04 - 03:58 PM

Jood obviously hasn't been to either of the week-long festivals which follow Sidmouth i.e. Broadstairs and then Whitby. Both are as good as, if not better than, Sidmouth for participation; especially Whitby.
Both festivals also have a wealth of performances by folk artists from around the globe but with the emphasis on British artists.
Sidmouth may be Mecca but the other two are Bethlehem and Nirvana.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 07 Sep 04 - 07:03 PM

Please Pleased can we get ove the my festival is better than your syndrome - Sidmouth was 50 this year has a special place in thousands or more hearts that others will aspire to in time.....

All festivals have their good and bad points - I've worked for Sidmouth for more years than I care to mention in various capacities - I've been to Broadstairs and enjoyed it - never Whitby even though I was brought up on tesside - so am I missing something in my life - Yes Sidmouth - a world renowned fetival which the others aren't yet but may become in time!

Lets focus on the way forward - Jood should have helped us short sighted small minded Brits to focus on the problems and the way forward not start another petty discussion! NOt my fetival is better than yours!!

Look forward and see the way - follow the yellow brick road and see if there is a holy grail at the end of it Brian!

*GRIN* I should be more serious!!!

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: squeezyjohn
Date: 07 Sep 04 - 08:27 PM

I think I have now been to every major festival in the UK calendar, whether as punter, market trader or performer.

Nothing tops Sidmouth - sorry! While I appreciate the differences between festivals and I like nearly all of them for their strengths, I think that nothing compares to Sidmouth for my generation in terms of a place where we feel as included as the older generation do. There is nothing which compares to the Shooting Roots venture amongst other major festival organisers. Fortunately Mrs. Casey still run the Towersey Festival where SR can continue their great work. However I fear that the youth movement in the British folk scene will take some years to find a home as compelling as Sidmouth run by Mrs. Casey.

It's a great shame. I wouldn't take it on given the bureacracy of the local council in Sidmouth - and I reckon no good businessman would if they knew the crap they were up against. You can all try to keep it alive with your goodwill but I reckon it's going to die whatever. The majority of the residents in Sidmouth deserve it to die - when a great deal of the shops/businisses go under due to the demise of the festival as we know it - the town will become a ghost town with nothing more than a post office. Then they'll complain - and it will be too late!

The locals who oppose the festival will complain to the same E. Devon council when the town goes under. They will not be concerned for the loss of a major part of many young folkies lives which cannot be replaced by any other UK festival. I cry at the fact that I won't be back at Sidmouth for the festival as I know it.

But we'll be back somewhere - even thought this setback will set the youth English folk movement back a few years - we'll be back - somewhere. And I hope the town has tumbleweeds blowing through the empty businesses as the majority of the population has voted for - it's all they deserve.

It's not to do with who's the best festival! It's just that Sidmouth was more welcoming to the youth element than all the others - and it was always more vibrant for it. Any offers?

Cheers
Squeezy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: JMo
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 03:57 AM

I agree with your last point - that it will take a while for the youth folk movement to find anywhere as welcoming, but I'm kind of glad that the change is being forced. Maybe the lack of places to go and suitable things to do will spur on some people to be new organisers etc and get a proper youth folk movement going.

While sidmouth was/(is?) very good for young people, it was always a little bit too "childminderish" to my mind, and the one thing that has never been nurtured is any initiative or drive to make events happen where they weren't happening before.

Maybe next summer they'll be a few more new festivals run by, and for, all the younger people that have a hole in their lives because Sidmouth isn't there. I really hope so.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 07:08 AM

But Sidmouth will be there! And so will my kids...singing and hopefully playing as they have always done

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 08:00 AM

I went to Sidmouth for the first time this year, and I totally agree that's it's welcoming and encouraging to the youth generation in a way that most other festivals fall short of.

However, I found the geographics of the town awkward and detrimental to seeing everything I wanted to - the distance you have to cover to move between events in different locations means that you miss a lot (and I'm a reasonbly fit 20 something).

I also went to Towersey for the first time this year. Shorter festival, I was a steward so theoretically should have had less free time - and I saw three times as much. The reason is simple - everything's within a few minutes' walk.

I'm not comparing the two festivals at all - as I've only been to both of them once it's not my place to pass judgement - but I couldn't help thinking that a few well placed farmer's fields would go a long way towards relocationg what was Sidmouth if that's what's needed. And would help out our agricultural industry financially - let's give the venue rental money to them rather than to a council who appears not to care about a major cultural event that has put their town of the map.

BFB xxx


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Dave of Mawkin
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 09:48 AM

I personally have never been to Sidmouth and therefore dont really feel like Ive lost anything, however as I'm a Shooting Roots tutor I understand the enormous amount of fun it was, its a real shame that Shooting Roots is going to lose its home, but I think this gives us young people the opportunity to express the dire situation that folk music opportunities are in, if young people have to travel fucking miles to a folk festival to meet fellow young folkies to jam with and go out with then something has to be done, we have to start getting rid of the shit stereotypes of folk music and make folk music more accessible to young people in our local communities.I hope that Folk Arts England sees this and discusses what to do....afterall, why do you think I help organise my local folk festival? because Im pissed off with the M25.

Stop letting other people do the hardwork, get off your arses and try to make folk music better in your area.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Henry
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 03:45 PM

"Stop letting other people do the hardwork, get off your arses and try to make folk music better in your area."

Absolutely!

Maybe somebody is doing that already. I've seen rumours (maybe it was on the eceilidh list) that there are plans afoot to start a new festival next year aimed at hanging on to the young crowd who go to the Dance House and LNE - ie a centred on English ceilidh & Shooting Roots type event, somewhere in the south, end of June when exams finish. That'll be good with no real Sidmouth next year, and still good even if the old one ever comes back. Anybody heard anything about this?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Jood
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 04:41 PM

It's true,I haven't been to any other really big festivals in the UK, and I am glad that Broadstairs and Whitby are as inclusive and participatory because it means we'll have somewhere else to go if Sidmouth dies. But it won't be the same, and perhaps that's age speaking. Although I love the west coast here, and have been here for 38 years, I sometimes wish that I could spend just one year in the UK (my birthplace) and take in all these marvellous festivals that you lucky people seem to have every weekend, somewhere. Is anyone interested over there in getting secured gov't funding for Sidmouth? You all know your gov't much better than I do, and god knows the Canadian government wouldn't fork out a bent nickel for a folk festival, especially if it, god forbid, had any true Canadian content, let alone Canadian traditions (Yes, we have many) Is the Blair gov't the same when it comes to the arts and English heritage?

Please, some of you, get more positive. I've seen amazing things happen when enough people write letters, go to meetings, protest, come up with viable solutions. I'm sure that's happening about Sidmouth already, and more people are probably needed.

I just want to comment about the geography of Sidmouth. I agree that it is difficult to get from one event to another, and last time we went we came home with sore feet and hips due to all the unaccustomed pavement pounding we were doing. But I loved that we were in a town and not a farmer's field or an impersonal exhibition ground somewhere. It meant I didn't have to camp, I could eat at a nice restaurant if I got fed up with the food at the arena, I could go back to my B&B and listen to the Kate Rusby concert from the open window, or I could just wander along the prom or sit on the beach or go for a walk on the cliffs. For us, of course, being "furriners", this was all gravy. Perhaps others who are used to little Devon seaside resorts don't feel the same way. I like Sidmouth, and I was grateful that the townspeople allowed the festival to disrupt their lives for a week. I am sorry to hear that some of them resented us.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: vectis
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 04:51 PM

I was not saying that other festivals were better than Sidmouth. I was trying to point out that there ARE OTHER FESTIVALS that last a week. They have a different ethos to Sidmouth but they do exist. I try and do all three and enjoy doing different things with different people in the three towns.
Jood did not appear to know that the others even existed.
Sidmouth is certainly the major base for nurturing youth talent which desparately needs a new home during the summer holidays (so their parents and siblings can get them there and care for them while they enjoy themselves). To let it wither on the vine is a potential disaster.
Sidmouth also books the largest number of big, expensive acts and has the biggest social dance programme.
It will be a sad loss to the folk world but it will not mean the extinction of folk music in England as a few posts seem to imply.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 04:59 PM

Well I'm an old fogie and I live in the middle bar and the FDH alot of the time! Taht lets me out of some of the suggestions above!

I'm sorry that F*ck*ng Dave of P*ss*ng Mawkin sees the need to use such sh*t* bad F*ck*ng language but also that Squeezy can sum it all up so succinctly and so well. I'm pretty certain a festival will be back - we all hear rumours - personally I may give it all a miss next year other than MBS reunion in February.

Fortunately shooting roots are branching out and soon will be sapling trees or bedding plants! *GRIN* Jackie Oates, John Brenner, Laurel Swift and heaps of others who's names I don't know but who always talk to me (and who don't see the need to use such bad language either) They do get off their backsides and are making lots of things happen. Nothing is going to stop as I see it other than Sidmouth as we know it which after 50 years is a legend lets not loose track of that lets all, young and old, bask in the memories of what we have had, what we have gained and look forward to how we can use that to its and our best advantage be it personal pleasure - performance - teaching or just stewarding and enjoying the craic!

It was Great and it may be again!

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 06:36 PM

Squeezy is absolutely right. I was 17 when I went to my first Sidmouth festival, first heard Tony Rose, June Tabor, Pete Coe and Chris Richards, Yetties, Carthy Swarbrick, Valley Folk (including Steve Heap). First saw Morris dancers and was hooked on the folk scene in perpetuity, even before I discovered Heritage (and Squeezy's parents)in Oxford.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Jood
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 06:55 PM


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Jood
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 07:15 PM

Well I did know about the other festivals, and more. We have a large contingent here of ex-patriot British folkies. There are four Morris sides in the Vancouver area, three in Victoria, many in the US. We have a rapper side, an English clogging group, many traditional singers, and some of those people put on a Traditional English Christmas revue full of rapper, Molly dancing, Mumming play, and traditional village carols. Many of these people regularly visit the UK and go to various festivals, including Broadstairs and Whitby. But Sidmouth remains the festival par excellence. And for us, if you are going to spend a few thousand dollars on plane tickets and a weekend pass and accomodation and all your annual vacation, you go to the best. I would love to go to the other festivals, and I'm going to, as soon as I win the lottery.

I hear that some people think that losing Sidmouth won't be the end of the world, (It won't) That there are other festivals, other ways of encouraging young talent in the traditions of England. But why re-invent the wheel? You have it now, in the form that works, why let it die? It seems such a waste.

Anyway, cheers, from the colonies

Jood


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Folkiedave
Date: 08 Sep 04 - 07:21 PM

More power to Squeezy's elbows.

A perfect summation of it and I just wish a few politicians could see the effect that (some) music has on (some) people's lives. It happens to be the music I love.

Perhaps then they might encourage it with cash.

And to those younger people who wish to organise a festival - go out and do it......there are dozens of people who can give you as much expertise as you might ever wish to tap into without interfering with your own ideas. Ask them.

Dave


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,*ck*ng Dave of P*ss*ng Mawkin
Date: 09 Sep 04 - 08:23 AM

Hehehe!

Fiddler, I think you need to calm down its a free world and im entitled to say what I like.The only reason why I swore so much in the message is because I get frustrated by the way people tend to moan about something and never are willing to sort the problem themselves.Just because my post had swearing in it, doesnt make it less of a opinion, maybe I dont have the schooling, socio-economic background but Im still entitled to my opinion.

I do happen to know Jacki,Jon and Laurel very well, and appreciate the hardwork that they put into the folk scene, which is why they asked me to join the shooting roots team.

Thanks for my new name though, its got a certain ring to it...


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,*ck*ng Dave of P*ss*ng Mawkin
Date: 09 Sep 04 - 01:49 PM

I think what I was meaning to say, was sorry, I didnt mean to cause offence by my profanity and assure you that Iam not always that crass with my words.I just enjoy swearing sometimes?!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 09 Sep 04 - 03:43 PM

Grand * Dave of * * for once you make me Grin - Well done LOL even!!!!

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 09 Sep 04 - 08:25 PM

So why do you pick a name like that? There is a wealth of language in the vocabulary there for the using without resorting to what is generally regarded as profanity. That's not to say I've never used the S or F words myself!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 10 Sep 04 - 04:06 AM

What has the last two posts got to do with Sidmouth festival!!!!!!!.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Cllr
Date: 10 Sep 04 - 05:32 AM

some politicians do care about Folk Music. Cllr (problem is, it is just a few)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Dave of mawkin
Date: 10 Sep 04 - 07:21 AM

ahhhh.Thats better, im glad we sorted that out fiddler, I dont like argueing on the internet its like ringing up someone just to annoy them (and ive experienced that through girlfriends and its not nice), hmmm.....anyway, something about sidmouth?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Merina
Date: 10 Sep 04 - 09:02 AM

S & F words? Sidmouth & Folk?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 11 Sep 04 - 08:00 AM

About time there was some proper discussion here...

The SeeRed website has been updated with more information on 2005/2006. The relevant pages run from folk40 through to folk44, so you can start here http://www.seered.co.uk/folk40.htm and work through or go to the most 'interesting' new page to start and go back via the top of section page.

http://www.seered.co.uk/folk44.htm discusses the confusion surrounding the several websites and persons involved in organising possibly conflicting events during 2005. East Devon District Council have also added links to their site and these are given - but read the cautionary notes first.

For persons new to this saga, start at http://www.seered.co.uk/folk38.htm and work through to page folk44.

Maybe we can look forward to some (polite) feedback?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Jim Martin
Date: 13 Sep 04 - 07:28 AM

Just to add to previous comments:

Please see this copy of email sent to organisers of this years' Fest.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Jim Martin
Date: 13 Sep 04 - 08:10 AM

COPY OF EMAIL SENT 30/8/04 TO ORGANISERS OF 50TH SIDMOUTH FOLK FESTIVAL:



















Just a short note to say how much I enjoyed the Festival this year. Everyone seemed to pull out all the stops with it being the 50th and the uncertainty of the future gave everything a very special significance.

I also enjoyed seeing highlights on BBC4 TV 2 nights ago, in fact, I am going to ask them to show more as I know from talking to the TV crew, that they recorded a huge amount, probably at least 10 times the one hour that was actually screened! They also said that they are going to keep everything and that they do respond to viewers reactions, so please pass on the word so that we can see more. There has been precious little traditional music, singing, dancing, storytelling etc. on TV, so we all need to encourage them in order to eliminate the hoary old chestnut that it is a minority interest! If more people are made aware of the diversity of the folk scene, then it would be much more popular and should therefore earn a fairer representation within the media. I did not get involved in the folk "scene" until 1985 when I was 38 - a late developer, but I just could not believe what was "out there" to choose from, it must have been one of the world's best kept secrets and I think, to a certain extent, it still is!

I wish you and everybody concerned, including the new trust to be set up, the very best wishes for the future security of the Festival. It is very unique, the special atmosphere could not be re-created anywhere else, the way ALL family members have been very well looked after over the years and the way it is regarded by many people (including myself) as an ideal situation for meeting up with old friends on a regular basis is of special value and why I have been coming back for 16 years (even though I have been living in Ireland for the past 3 years and it therefore costs me a lot more time, effort and money to get to)! Also, the highlights of the Festival for me are the opportunities to meet the international dance groups, one just cannot put a high enough value on this, the goodwill created is absolutely tremendous and is sensed by all those who participate, I have never experienced this as much as I have at Sidmouth. Lose this and the world for me (and I am sure lots of other people) would be a much poorer place!

Hopefully, a lot of the infrastructure (including people), built up over the last 50 years will be retained as it could be virtually impossible to replace.

Please feel free, if you so wish, to pass on my comments to anyone who you might consider would appreciate them as I am sure most Festival attendees feel the same way as myself and as the MP's always reckon, for every one letter they get from a constituent regarding a particular topic, there's probably another 1,000 or more feeling the same way but who have not bothered to write! I'm not sure of the 1,000 figure, but you get my drift!

Once again, the very best wishes - LONG LIVE THE SIDMOUTH FOLK FESTIVAL!





Jim Martin


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,An Interested Party
Date: 13 Sep 04 - 08:57 AM

Just been looking at Steve form Sidmouths Web site!

Two questions - I have a sinister brain!

1)Somewhere in the depths of my brain it registers that there is a covenant on field 1 of the camp site relating to its use by the festival. If it is not used next year will this be broken (if it exists) and will some developer manage to build houses on it at a substantial profit?

Steve, our man on the spot, would be the man to check this out.

2) Who actually 'owns' the title 'Sidmouth International Festival', along with all the goodwill etc. that goes with it - 50 years of trading during the first week in August, now documented in a book, would stand up in court very easily if any claim were (quite rightly) put in.

As I said above I have a sinister brain and sadly must remain anonymous at this time!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Jim Martin
Date: 19 Sep 04 - 10:22 AM

I sent an email to East Devon District Council to find out what's happened about the Autumn meeting that was supposed to be taking place but, so far, I've heard nothing.

Does anybody else know what's going on?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,MBS
Date: 19 Sep 04 - 10:26 AM

Try one of the above websites,i think the one on the 14/8/04 might help you out.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 19 Sep 04 - 12:28 PM

Jim Martin
There's a meeting on 23 October,in Sidmouth,to plan next year's festival. If anyone wants to contribute to arranging an interim festival next year, please contact sidmouthfringe05@aol.com.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 20 Sep 04 - 05:33 PM

......."is there a covenant on field 1 of the camp site relating to its use by the festival? If it is not used next year will this be broken (if it exists) and will some developer manage to build houses on it?"

Reply to the above:

Covenants are usually restrictive and placed on land by an owner before he sells to prevent a new owner doing A, B or C (keeping a caravan, putting out washing, keeping pigs, etc), and are distinct from restrictions under planning legislation. Positive covenants (thou shalt do X or Y on pain of Z) are rare and generally unenforceable if applied to land - if you own the land you cannot generally be forced to do anything (but see the discussion on Section 215 of the T&CPA on my website for what councils can try to force you to do!). http://www.seered.co.uk/sec215.htm

I believe the field is owned by a man who lives in Bickwell Valley in Sidmouth - and I doubt he would get planning consent even if he applied for it. A covenant on land to prevent building usually has no influence on whether or not planning permission is granted - anyone with an interest can seek to enforce the covenant but it is not a part of planning - it is a civil matter to be pursued via the courts. Anyone can apply at any time for planning permission in respect of any piece of land - you don't have to own it, just pay the relevant fee to the Planning Dept. Of course, consent to build on land is not much use if you don't own it! Sometimes builders apply for permission then make the owner of the land an offer he cannot refuse.

##################################################

A more serious concern for the main campsite is the increasing emphasis on health and safety. Some years ago I highlighted to EDDC and the festival organisers the inherent danger of having old caravans with dubious brakes (and pitched by incompetent owners) on a slope above rows of tents. This would never be allowed on any 'official' or permanent campsite. I will load some of the material on my website in the next few weeks but for 2006 there may need to be a rethink of the layout and use of these fields.

###################################################

"Who (if anyone) actually 'owns' the title 'Sidmouth International Festival'?"

This point was raised at the June 2004 meeting in Sidmouth (see www.seered.co.uk/folk18.htm) but not answered conclusively. There is bound to be a list of registered names, products etc on the Internet or in a decent reference library.

I hope that helps for now.

####################################################

In reply to the last post:

In respect of news from EDDC, it has gone very quiet. There was a meeting last Wednesday involving Wren Trust et al (so I believe) but the public were not able to attend. Fair enough if it's confidential but it is now three months since the 14 June meeting in Sidmouth and no-one outside the the inner loop has heard anything.

Steve in Sidmouth
http://www.seered.co.uk


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 20 Sep 04 - 05:51 PM

This memo appeared on the Cropredy thread.

"Fairport should get in touch with Steve Heap, Sidmouth with Chris Pegg."

By chance, I listened to the recent R4 programme discussing Fairport Convention and their following over generations at Cropredy. The relevant features of the festival seem to be that the whole community locally grew up with it and feel it is 'theirs' - something that Sidmouth may never manage to achieve because of where it is and who lives hereabouts.

I was struck however by the fact that the Cropredy festival is now in doubt primarily because one person is 'moving on'. Festivals cannot (or should not) be organised to be so dependent on either one person or a few people. That being said, unless there was an autocrat like Steve Heap in charge of something as large and complex as Sidmouth, nothing would get done. Problem is, when the autocrat leaves or is run over by a bus, what then?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Gaddafi
Date: 23 Sep 04 - 11:24 AM

I'm trying to rustle up interest in keeping the lunchtime Volunteer 'In the Tradition' session going for 2005 (if John and Dan aren't around). Any takers?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 06 Oct 04 - 08:35 AM

What was wrong with this thread that we needed (?) a new one?

Gloomy Press report here http://www.seered.co.uk/folk45.htm


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 12 Oct 04 - 09:23 AM

Do we know the "official" dates for the "unofficial" festival - will they be 29/07/05 - 05/08/05. If we're planning to go, we'll need to book somewhere for our caravan soon - especially if the usual campsite may not be available.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: John Golightly
Date: 13 Oct 04 - 05:54 AM

Those dates are correct - it's generally the week containing the first Monday in August.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 13 Oct 04 - 08:15 AM

Do we have to maintain two threads? Do I have to post everything twice?

Lots more information on latest pages of www.seered.co.uk including details of dance tickets (only 300 available at £90), camping (looks like it may be a shambles) and discussion of where the arena profits will go. I think the steering group have missed a key opportunity.

If you have already read folk 45 then start at folk 46 and on to folk49. Any comments welcome but please read and digest before rushing to criticise!
http://www.seered.co.uk/folk46.htm


Does anyone have a person to person email link I could add to page folk46 please?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 13 Oct 04 - 10:21 AM

OK we've managed to book onto the (Caravan Club CL) site at the Little Bowd Farm. See you all next year.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Oct 04 - 11:04 PM


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 15 Oct 04 - 10:15 AM

Latest from local press here http://www.seered.co.uk/folk50.htm

Sidmouth Town Council wants to raise £50,000 to employ a fundraiser.

Don't ask me, I just live here.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes and Chris Wale
Date: 21 Oct 04 - 04:26 AM

What a sad state of affairs we have, no wonder Steve Heap chucked the towel in. We and other LOCAL residents and businesses wanted to see a festival continuing in Sidmouth in 2005. All we now have is Doctor Stephen Wozniak of Sidford's nature reserve knocking our efforts. Why doesn't he as a local resident stop his bickering and come and give us a hand. We have already pledged that any profits made in the Arena during 2005 (excluding Caribbean Night) will go towards the 2006 event. By helping us he will also be able to see exactly where this money is going. Come on Dr Wozniak (Steve) we await your call.

Breaking News!! There will also be a late night extra event adjacent to the Thorn Golf Campsite this will be served by regular buses from the Core Hill campsite and will pick up from the Arena.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: rhyzla
Date: 21 Oct 04 - 05:32 AM

It's a fair proposition Steve, you are always asking for transparency, here is your opportunity - will you be willing to make your response publicly here?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Oct 04 - 10:16 AM

Dear Stuart Hughes and Chris Wale
I applaud your efforts and I am aware of some of the suspicions that inevietably flow when discussions about the continuation of the festival abound. I raise a couple of points here not to confuse issues just simply seeking some clarification.
The caribean night is a profit making event as you have rightly declared very openly in the past. I understand that without the infrastructure of the arena events in the past the caribean night possibly would not be able to either take and/or raise a profit.
One of the ways forward for the festival, I believe, is to apply for arts grants but in the past this has not been possible because of the involvlement of a profit making organisation (mrs casey music) not the umbrella organisation of Sidmouth international festival.

With the Caribean night piggy backing off the folk arena events it might preclude the access to the large government regional grants that might be available purley because of it being a profit making event. I do believe that in previous years it made very good sense to use the arena site for the Caribean Night however if - and I do say if -it could block fund raising avenues that need to be explored for the continuation of the festival this could be an issue which will provoke much comment.

I welcome very much the news that a late night extra event is being planned and look forward to seeing more details again Your efforts are being appreciated.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: John J
Date: 21 Oct 04 - 12:31 PM

Guest?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes and Chris Wale
Date: 21 Oct 04 - 04:08 PM

In reply to Guest? I don't believe that the Caribbean Night event makes any difference to the festivals ability to apply for arts grants. The Caribbean Night is a stand alone event which follows on from the Festival. What it has been able to do in recent years is help with some of the transport costs as by hiring on PA and LX equipment used by the festival it then fell to Caribbean Night to pay for its transport up the M5.
The Caribbean Night has been running for 22 years and didn't prevent the previous Festival Director from securing funding.
The Caribbean Night is the only fund raising event for the Sidmouth Carnival and we can assure you that there was a lot of hard work put into running this years event for a very small return no more than £500 profit. This poor return was mainly due to the cost of the star band ASWAD who didn't attract as many as we thought they would. The late Edwin Starr and Buster Bloodvessel had far greater pulling power.
We do not expect to be lambasted or critized on certain websites and can someone please explain what a true folkie is. Living in Sidmouth as we do and having opened our doors to visitors who run folk clubs around the country, artistes appearing at past festivals including Dougie Mclean and Kieran Halpin I would have thought that we were true folkies.
As far as the Arena is concerned if Steve Wozniak would like to take it on then just let us know, as we are not prepared to take anymore criticism. We want Sidmouth 2005 to be a success.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Chris Wale and Stuart Hughes
Date: 21 Oct 04 - 05:23 PM

Just to confirm that the 2005 Fringe Folk Festival at the arena show ground will be purely Folk, just to dismiss any misconceptions on certain websites which includes Steve's from Sidmouth!!!!

We look forward to a great 2005 Festival that will offer acts such as Show of Hands, Worzels and the Strawbs to name but a few....


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 22 Oct 04 - 06:11 PM

My reply to Councillor Hughes is in part as published on the latest pages of my website (51 and onwards). These were prepared before I saw his comments on mudcat.org but we seem to be thinking along similar lines.

I remain willing to help any aspect of the main fringe festival but am unlikely to wish to get involved with Hughes et al in the arena 'goings-on' - whatever they turn out to be. There is (arguably) sufficient discussion already on my website about differences of opinion between Cllr Hughes and myself. However, if the exhortation from Cllr Hughes to 'join in' is a formal invitation to become a member of the group organising the 2005 festival, then I accept. This could be not only as a 'resident of Sidmouth' but as an active member of local folk dance clubs and attendee of the Festival. To date, insufficient local consultation has taken place - for example, no-one has asked local folk dancers if we would prefer to be 'out in the sticks' or in Blackmore Gardens. Yet a prime stated objective following the June meeting was to involve local people more!

In particular, I would be willing to help audit and publish accounts for all the fringe activities, including the arena. If a set of proper accounts is to be produced (and I think they should be for all the reasons stated on my website) some element of independent scrutiny is essential. One of the problems that has led to suspicion about the folk festival in Sidmouth (as it was run by Steve Heap) is the lack of detailed published accounts - fair enough as he ran the whole event superbly and as a business combined with many other folk interests. He had no particular reason to separate out Sidmouth in his formal accounts.

I have many times asked EDDC when the 'supportive' people of Sidmouth could become involved - and that does not mean supportive of the changes in the arena. To date we have been denied an opportunity despite a promise in June that a meeting would be held at an early stage. If we had been involved I like to think the whole festival week might have remained under the control of 'folkies' and including the arena. This is discussed on page 51 of my website (at the bottom) and was loaded some days ago.

I have asked both EDDC and the fringe organisers if I could attend the meeting on 23 October in Sidmouth and have been told it is 'only for performers/groups etc to organise who does what where and when, not for wider issues' so I am excluded. I have had no reply to an email forwarded to Tony Day by Bill Lankester. In any case, it is too late now significantly to influence what goes on in the arena which will inevitably help to define the character of the whole week.

I concur with the views expressed on the Mudcat site that a change in the character of the folk festival (international festival) could render it ineligible for Arts Council funding - and this was (is??) still a best hope for long term survival of an internationally significant event. Otherwise it may degrade into just a local 'music/fairground/carnival' event that may be of little interest to folkies or anyone else in the wider world - by that I mean outside of East Devon and its environs. The relevant discussion is in various 'answers' on the Q&A page folk51.htm. This reflects deep concern, at least in parts of the folk world.

In the view of many of the people I talk to, the festival we knew is already finished. I hope they are wrong but if it is ever to be again what it was, control must once again become vested in the hands of people who appreciate the folk arts world and are genuinely immersed in it. A renowned international event cannot successfully be maintained by amateurs (and including elected amateurs) who just happen to live in the small town that was fortunate enough to have been where the festival grew and matured. The truth of this may become increasingly apparent.

Dr Stephen J Wozniak
Sidmouth 22 October 2004


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes
Date: 23 Oct 04 - 06:01 PM

In reply to Stephen Wozniak, may I assure him that we will indeed have audited accounts and will be using the same accountant that audits our carnival accounts and also carries out work on the accounts of an organisation that Stephen Wozniak is involved in.
If Stephen (Sidmouth's genuine folkie) would like an input into what happens at the Arena in 2005 then why not come and speak to us. We are already seeking advice from many active people in the folk world who want to see 2005 be a success which in turn will provide a spring board for 2006.
Come on Stephen stop criticizing and start helping by being positive for once.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 23 Oct 04 - 06:27 PM

Most of you know my views on 2005 and beyond, I've even doubted both Steve and EDDC in the past so developing this further could they please please do their bikerring in Sidmouth in the correct, if you will excuse the pun, arena and leave our threads to promote what is being attempted without a great deal of assistance form EDDC and the rest.

It surely is this sort of small minded petty stupidity that got us here in the first place - has anyone learned anything?

Sorry if this is a bit confrontational but lets not do a military political two step for the next two years - Tony and others are working very hard - help them and get down off your own personal soap box challenges.

To finish....

Friends, folkies and Devonians
Lend me your town,
We come most years to benefit you
Not to kill you
The evil that men do lives after them
The good is oft interred in their bones
Let not this be with Sidmouth (festival)
For Sidmouth was a great event -
So were they all all great events.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Contrary Mary
Date: 24 Oct 04 - 02:40 PM

I agree with Fiddler. Boys will be boys but we've had enough bickering. For Heaven's sake, offer this Dr Wozniak a place on your committee. Get him to oversee the accounts if it makes him happy (they're probably as boring as he sounds anyway) and you never know he might turn out to be a postive asset as he clearly loves the festival. And while you're about it, when can the rest of we local folkies get involved?

"Two things are always the same the dance and war. One might say anything is the same but the dance and war are particularly the same because one can see them. That is what they are for."

(Gertrude Stein, Everybody's autobiography.)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes and Chris Wale
Date: 24 Oct 04 - 03:00 PM

I applaude the last two guests comments, we would welcome Stephen Wozniak's input into helping co-ordinate the arena programme and working with us to ensure 2005 is a sucess. As there is no public (tax payers)money (and hasn't been for the Caribbean Night in the past) being put into helping stage the events at the Arena, there is no requirement to publicize our accounts.However as far as transparency is concerned we shall be only too pleased to publicize them.

(Stuart Hughes and Chris Wale)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie inSidmouth
Date: 24 Oct 04 - 03:37 PM

Gosh! What's all this going on then? I thought it had gone EXTREMEly quiet over on Radio 2!!

Just to say that I think Stuart Hughes, whom I have not met, and Chris Wale, whom I have, (Hi Chris!) strike me as two people, among many others, who are working extremely hard to help this Festival continue!

They come from Sidmouth and are two of a VERY few people from this town who are willing to help. Yes, they do Caribbean Night and they do it very well, they put themselves at personal financial risk for something they believe in, not a lot of people would be willing to do that! They are NOT trying to take over the Festival or use it for their own personal ends so maybe, just maybe, you should all work WITH them and not against them!

And as for Dr. Wozniak, well, Steven you never did reply to my e mail over on Radio 2 did you! Is this thread really about The Sidmouth International Folk Festival or about a website called SeeRed? Having read some of the above, I seem to be a little confused.

We are in grave danger of losing this National Treasure of a Folk Festival. Maybe, just maybe Dr. Wozniak would like to help in the raising of the £50,000 needed for a Professional Fundraiser, as Tony Reed, Town Council Chairman, has had very very few replies, so I understand. There seems to be a huge amount of energy being wasted here, which should be going into The Sidmouth Festival. This Festival is not about ANY individuals, egos or websites. It is about all of us, our heritage, our history, our children. So just stop the arguing and the endless ramblings of Seered. and get on with the important job that needs doing!!

If Stuart Hughes is as decent,honest, kind and as caring a man as I know Chris Wale to be, and I am sure he is, then the Arena is in safe hands!

So Stuart and Chris, I wish you both luck, I trust you both and thanks for all your hard work!

And as for everyone else, Shame on You.
All together, All as One!!

Lizzie
Resident of Sidmouth!

Sorry to sound Grumpy, but I'm beginning to See Red myself!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie in Sidmouth
Date: 24 Oct 04 - 04:01 PM

Oh Squeezy! You write as beautifully as you play! Well done you!

Lizzie :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie, again! In Sidmouth
Date: 24 Oct 04 - 04:53 PM

I forgot to say this!

Show of Hands! Show of Hands! Show of Hands! WOW! WOW! WOW!
I think 2005 is going to be GREAT!!!! And The Strawbs as well!
Book me my tickets for the Arena PLEASE!

Oh! Show of Hands in Sidmouth Arena 2005, just at the end of my road!
How lucky can you get!! Why aren't you all smiling as widely and as deeply as I am!!

Are Spiers & Boden coming too? And The Oysterband? And Fairport Convention?

Roll on Sidmouth 2005!   It's going to be BRILLIANT!

Lizzie :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 26 Oct 04 - 05:54 PM

I think 2005 is going to be GREAT!!!! And The Strawbs as well!
Book me my tickets for the Arena PLEASE>

Don't forget those folk megastars, the "Worzels". Do you want a ticket for them too? :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Gadaffi
Date: 27 Oct 04 - 03:50 AM

I've heard rumours about the breadth of 'the Fringe' and the proposed LNE-type events on the old Third site that are planned. Can anybody who attended last Saturday's meeting fill me in on a few facts?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Oct 04 - 04:03 AM

An announcement is promised soon, but there is a long way to go yet. There have been statements of intent before......

The Q&A page of SeeRed aims to keep people up to date, http://www.seered.co.uk/folk51.htm

The Wurzels should be a sell out for the farming community of East Devon - and for many of the locals in Sidmouth.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Gadaffi
Date: 27 Oct 04 - 05:16 AM

My 17 year old daughter is quite keen to see the Wurzels. They are quite a 'cult' band in her peer group, as they were in my day when Adge Cutler was waving his blackthorn stick. I still feel there is a need to add more 'cutting edge' performers to any proposed (Arena)events though to continue the Sidmouth 'spirit'.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Mr Red who has never been to Sidmouth FF
Date: 27 Oct 04 - 05:25 AM

I was always put off by the business model of previous organisers (what committee?) and the length and the cost (financial &/or stewarding cost) I am considering next year but the news seems to have died on e-ceilidh and it was not as boyant as I would hope.

Now how do other festivals survive on grants much less than 60,000 and ticket prices per day a lot lower? - the time put in by the festival director usually.

I trust Steve Heap has paid-of his mortgage taken-out to underwrite the annus mudlarkus


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes
Date: 27 Oct 04 - 06:29 AM

Can confirm that the website to be set up and adopted by the meeting last Saturday is http;//www.sidmouthfolkweek.org.uk. This website is now being built.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 29 Oct 04 - 07:50 AM

Nothing much in the Sidmouth Herald this week about the folk festival. We were all expecting a big announcement. There is a letter from Birmingham praising the SeeRed website for its coverage of the background issues - which may have got a little up the nose of some of those organising the "Hughes Fest", as the 2005 fringe is now called amongst some local folkies. You can view this by clicking on the link below and then on 'letters' on the left hand side. I tried to make a direct link but it didn't work.

Some locals are not buying the dance tickets because the decision was taken to hold them in a number of village halls scattered around and far from the town centre - where the dancing and music should (in our opinion) be concentrated. Amazingly, the dance coordinator apparently was not a member of the inner circle planning the 2005 fringe but was invited belatedly to the 23 October coven - which he couldn't make anyway. Some of us are seething about the lack of proper local consultation - but are we surprised?? This is Sidmouth after all.

On the bright side (depending on your point of view) the headlines in the Herald were of a £31,000 haul of cannabis. Also the recent storms made the seafront look like mid-winter. I am asking the Herald if I can have one of their photos for SeeRed. Read these stories too on the link below.

From 1 November there is a new website run by the Sidmouth Herald group and called www.devon24.co.uk. You could try this if you're interested in local news, also try www.sidmouthherald.co.uk for local news stories but few pictures. http://www.sidmouthherald.co.uk


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 29 Oct 04 - 08:31 AM

Please can you take the underlining out of the page?

Whilst it may appear to emphasise it has been or is about to be removed form html script generally as a tool.

It confused me in to looking for a link - generally underlined so v confusing!

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 29 Oct 04 - 03:44 PM

I am not sure who fiddler (Andy) is getting at over underlining!

However if it is me (and relating to page folk51 of SeeRed) I take the point about producing a pure text version for printing. The following instructions (which take only a few seconds to implement) will be added to the "textsizes.htm" page as soon as a certain server in California gets its act together. It has been upgraded and you know what that means - it no longer works properly.

"For printing, one recommended procedure is to download the required page as an htm file, then open it using WORD or OFFICE or a similar word processor, then save it again but this time as a .doc file. This can then be reformatted to set margins and font types and sizes. Retaining the arial font is recommended for greatest clarity. However, browsers and computers vary, so take these ideas as a guide only!

To print in black only, simply select the whole page (edit/select all) and set font size and colour. To remove the underlining of words that were hyperlinks simply underline and then de-underline the whole selected text.

To print just part of a page, try selecting the text and copy to clipboard (edit/copy). Then open Notepad or another text editor and paste the text into a new file. Then print as normal. You may lose some formatting and colour but this is often unimportant. Notepad files are 'text only' and cannot carry macro-viruses that can be associated with WORD files."

I hope that is helpful.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Another Festival Organiser
Date: 29 Oct 04 - 04:31 PM

Fairport Convention? Oysterband? Show of Hands? All names being mentioned repeatedly by Mr. Hughes as playing at the 2005 Sidmouth Festival... much to the delight of people like Lizzie (above).

Oh that it was true!

Sadly the agents / bookers for all the above artistes have no knowledge of their acts even being approached for Sidmouth 2005, let alone booked, indeed, they are extremely angry that Mr. Hughes is giving the false impression that they will be playing at Sidmouth next year (especially as one, possibly two, of the acts mentioned won't even be in the country at the time!).

It makes one wonder whether anyone can trust anything that Mr. Hughes says about Sidmouth 2005. Have a look at the websites for all the artistes whose names Mr. Hughes keeps mentioning. You won't find a single one stating that they are playing at Sidmouth 2005 and if you contact their agents / bookers / management / the artistes themselves you will find some very fed-up folkies who deeply dislike Mr. Hughes using their names without their permission.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes
Date: 29 Oct 04 - 05:19 PM

In reply to organiser of another festival, I haven't mentioned the Oyster Band and neither Fairport Convention (although third party contact has been made with their management re:possible date).
Show of Hands are however confirmed and will be opening the Arena Concerts on Saturday 30th July. Strawbs are confirmed for Tuesday 2nd August and Battlefield Band Friday 5th August. The Family show on Monday 1st August also confirmed with The Wurzels.
I must say I do find your comments insulting and so get your facts right before putting anymore verbal d'''''' on Mudcat.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Cats
Date: 29 Oct 04 - 05:34 PM

I'm getting the feeling that some folkies actually do not want a Sidmouth to happen next year. It's almost as if they are doing and saying everything to put obstacles in its way. Some people are really trying to make a fringe festival happen next year and are putting their own money up front, and taking the risks of it all falling flat and ending up with a loss of revenue, out of their own pockets. Coupled with this is the promise that any profits made will go to a Sidmouth 2006 Festival.

If the amount of effort that has gone into knocking people and their contributions to Sidmouth 2005 were put into making it succeed we'd all be a lot further down the road than we are at the moment. And, of course, if there isn't a Sidmouth 2005 or if it all falls flat, these same people will take great delight in being the first to say, 'I told you so'. So, rather than winge, try getting involved and make it happen.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: The Barden of England
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 06:10 AM

Well said Cats.

To those who keep going on about no invites to the 23rd. October meeting I'd just like to point out that Herga Kitty posted something to this very thread as follows:-

Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty - PM
Date: 19 Sep 04 - 12:28 PM

Jim Martin
There's a meeting on 23 October,in Sidmouth,to plan next year's festival. If anyone wants to contribute to arranging an interim festival next year, please contact sidmouthfringe05@aol.com.
Kitty


So did you do that? If so where were you, as I managed to get to it from here in darkest Kent? I went not as an organiser but as a person who enjoys Sidmouth as a place as well as just for the festival. I thought the group that were there, including the much maligned Stuart Hughes, were working towards the continuation of the festival in the best way they know how. In my recollection Mrs. Caseys website for Sidmouth never showed who was going to be on next year at this time the previous year so why all the mud slinging? Give them a chance, and instead of being harbingers of doom and gloom, get positive and join in what could be a great new beginning. By the way these people are trying to do this without monetary help from EDDC who have withdrawn the 60,000 ponds for 2005, and also for 2006. That should at the very least please those of you who live in East Devon as there is an immediate saving of 120,000 pounds. I'm sure that very soon there will be some sort of press release about what has happened so far, so I won't go on here as I might well get it wrong and give you all wrong advice. Suffice to say that I'm sure you can all help by joining in rather than knocking. It's a human trait I know- kick someone while they're down, but is that in the best interest of the festival? I for one hope not.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Morris B Dancer
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 06:33 AM

The Barden of England argues his case well but the problem is that many of us who have enjoyed Sidmouth over the years fear that half a festival in 2005 could mean no festival at all thereafter. Consider this. If Sidmouth as we know it couldn't survive financially even with a £60,000 annual grant from EDDC, what chance of prospering with no grant at all from EDDC? The fact that EDDC has withdrawn all funding from both 2005 and 2006 suggests either that the Council has no confidence in its own Councillor Hughes to organise the event properly or else feels the event will be so poor compared to previous festivals that it will not be worthy of funding anyway. My fear is that many people will still visit Sidmouth in 2005 but when they see that the event is a very poor shadow of what they have come to expect and enjoy will vote with their feet and not return in 2006 or thereafter. After all there are many other fine folk festivals to attract us these days - Cambridge, Towersey, Broadstairs, Chippenham, Gosport, Whitby, Beverley, Warwick, Bromyard, Bridgnorth, Fylde and more, all run by people with many years of experience in the folk scene, experience which Councillor Hughes, however well-meaning, cannot gain overnight. P.S. Remember also that it wasn't just the lack of cash that forced Mrs. Casey Music to withdraw from running Sidmouth, it was also the ever-increasing licensing restrictions imposed by the District Council. If Councillor Hughes runs Sidmouth 2005 presumably he too will have to find the cash for a full-time Health & Safety Officer, Noise Management Consultant, £15 million Public Liability Insurance etc. etc. etc. And do it without the £60,000 EDDC funding!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Bev Salmon
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 06:50 AM

I think Mr. Dancer has a valid point in questioning whether those planning Sidmouth 2005 have the necessary professional qualifications and expertise to do the job properly. Organising a major week-long international festival with camping is very different to putting-on a Caribbean Night. I wouldn't want the thousands who have many happy memories of Sidmouth over the years to come back one more time and find.... nothing except for a few concerts in a scaled-down arena and a handful of workshops in church halls on the outskirts of town. The 'magic' has gone, it can never be the same again, let's remember it for what it was and be grateful for what we had.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Pete_Standing
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 08:01 AM

Cambridge? A folk festival? I'd sooner head for the "City of Dreaming Spires" next May.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Pete_Standing
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 08:23 AM

Thinking of Cambridge, I think the BBC should not have sponsored this festival but had adopted Sidmouth instead. Cambridge will survive, it has the support of the local authority, it is the only "folk" festival that is covered by the mainstream media and thus has no problem attracting customers and I daresay, sponsors will follow too. Sidmouth was arguably the most important of the folk festivals and for the BBC to give it scant coverage and support compared to Cambridge is a travesty. Had the BBC thrown its weight behind Sidmouth, maybe the situation might be different now, who knows, the council and residents may have even been more positive with the status that would naturally be afforded by the BBC being involved.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: rhyzla
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 08:41 AM

Wow - you are implying that the BBC wouldn't want to change Sidmouth into a MOR alt country festival!
How would that be any better than what Stuart Hughes is trying to do!

If we are not careful, Stuart and his colleagues will simply walk away, and then there will be nothing left to whinge about!!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Adrianl
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 08:41 AM

I hardly think the BBC can be blamed for Sidmouth's problems. The BBC's job is not to bail out every event which has financial/organisational problems. They have enough pressure maintaining quality programming across a wide front to sponsor everything.

They did sponsor Sidmouth Festival - look and the old Sidmouth website which is still running.http://www.sidmouthfestival.com/. Various programmes have been broadcast from Sidmouth this year and in the past.

Adrian


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Pete_Standing
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 09:22 AM

Thanks for putting me right there Adrian, but the BBC made a big thing about sponsoring Cambridge when Charles Wells pulled out. I'm not saying that the BBC shouldn't cover Cambridge either, but, I think the BBC got its priorities wrong in respect of its sponsorship and coverage. I also agree that the BBC cannot shoulder the blame for what has happened, but had the BBC raised its profile, then that might have been the catalyst for keeping Sidmouth alive. The BBC put huge aounts of media coverage behind Cambridge. In contrast, Sidmouth got one (excellent) hour on BBC4, recorded by BBC Wales, one hour from the Mike Harding Show, which did not really cover Sidmouth, it was just a programme presented from Sidmouth with a four man/woman team and a DAT recorder, and finally, an interesting feature presented on R2 by Ralph McTell. Admittedly, BBC Wales recorded 10 hours, but I wonder how many hours were taped at Cambridge.

By the way, I would not advocate the BBC's inolvement if I thought it would devalue or debase what happens at Sidmouth. The quality of the Mike Harding show is determined by the production company, Smooth Operations. I would hope that the composition at Sidmouth would still be under the control of the outgoing artistic directors.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Edward (Sidmouth Resident)
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 10:11 AM

As one who always enjoyed the Arena concerts I well recall the BBC giving substantial support to the Sidmouth Festival in recent years. I fear they will not give Councillor Hughes the same support. In answer to Rhyzla (above) there are some who would argue that the best way of ensuring the return of a proper Folk Festival in 2006 is by preventing Councillor Hughes from promoting a half-baked, poor quality substitute in 2005. If all the businesses in Sidmouth who make money from the Festival find they can continue to do so without giving anything back then we will never get a Festival with the funding it needs and deserves from the local business community. Have a year with no Festival in 2005 and local businesses will soon realise what a huge hole there is in their income. It's the only hope for persuading them to put their money where their mouths are. Sidmouth needs a proper Folk Festival and the Festival needs proper funding support from those businesses who have made a mint over the years.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,The Devonian
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 10:23 AM

Pleased to see I'm not the only local who feels we need a year's break to make the town wake-up and realise how much it needs the Festival. Cynics who believe in the conspiracy theory might ponder on whether Cllr. Hughes is just trying to divert attention from his own Council's decision to stop funding the Festival. Don't help him get away with it!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: rhyzla
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 10:29 AM

Edward (Sidmouth resident),

I'm not sure how SHOW OF HANDS and the other artists hoping to play next year will feel about being called 'Half-baked' and 'poor quality substitute' - maybe this is just your opinion!

Also, can anyone tell me how a business can possibly make a mint in one week of the year, and survive the other 51? Cuckoo-land and clouds are involved in the phrase I'm thinking of!

A 'proper' festival needs more than just support from local business, it also needs support from local residents - like you!!

I propose you go back and read cats message (about 9 up ^) and perhaps you will be kind enough to tell us about your positive contribution to 2005?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Edward (Sidmouth resident)
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 11:13 AM

No need to be so abusive Rhyzla! For your information, I am a local shopkeeper who has (unlike most) contributed to Sidmouth Festival coffers over many years. I can tell you that some shops and pubs (especially pubs) make so much money in Festival week that it really does see us through the rest of the year. Just ask the publican who stayed long enough to make his annual profit at this year's Festival then, knowing what winter would be like, upped and left two weeks later! As for your comments about SHOW OF HANDS, read my previous e-mail again! I did not call any artistes 'half-baked' or 'poor quality substitute', I described Councillor Hughes' proposed event as 'half-baked' and a 'poor quality substitute' for what we have had in the past. I don't want to see top-quality artistes like SHOW OF HANDS turn-up and be let-down. Agreed the Festival needs the support of local residents as well as local businesses but it also needs the support of the local council and it needs someone better than Councillor Hughes to organise it.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Tony Day
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 12:25 PM

Coo - what a lot of hot air!! It's funny how malicious rumour can so quickly take on the mantle of (erroneousartificial) fact.

The truth is that Stuart Hughes is one of two dozen people who spent an amicable, enthusuastic and hard working three and a half hours on the 23rd, putting together the bones of what is going to be a very enjoyable festival. The team includes people who have considerable experience as senior organisers of most aspects of the Sidmouth Festival, as well as running other festivals. It also has a strong core of Sidmouth and nearby residents.

There will be a press release any moment now, and a flier before Christmas. The full programme will take shape in an orderly way over the next few months. Stuart's arena events will be an important part of Sidmouth Folk Week 2005, but there will also be many other concerts, ceilidhs, dances, singarounds, sessions and workshops. Much, much more than a fringe!

Those who love Sidmouth will keep July 29th - August 5th clear in their diaries, the rest will carry on carping here on mudcat to their hearts' content.

Tony


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: buttonbox
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 01:53 PM

reading through this thread it would seem that there are several keen and dedicated people who are trying to put something - or is it several independant somethings - together for 2005.

there are also one hell of a lot of whingers & moaners, most of whom would probably not dream of doing anything constuctive about anything

ignoring the latter group is it not time that representatives of the local council , even if that only consists of Mr hughes, local business and resident pro festival people and individuals and organisations within the national and international folk fraternity cut the crap and got on with things in the friendly, non adversarial spirit that binds us together.United they may just about stand - divided they are almost certain to fall.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 04:09 PM

To 'Another Festival Organiser'

Ummm.....Hello, whoever you are! Come on don't be shy! If you look back at what I said, you'll find that I was jumping up and down about Show of Hands because they HAD been confirmed! I asked THE QUESTION...that's what ?????....means, ABOUT each of the other artists.

i.e. ARE Spiers and Boden coming too? And The Oysterband? And Fairport? There, you see.....Questions NOT confirmations!!

They all happen to be artists which I love and I would love to see one or all of them in 2005!!!

I could have also asked about Kate Rusby, Eliza Carthy, John McCusker, Dougie MacLean, Martyn Joseph, Deb Sandland, Seth Lakeman, Equation, Tiger Moth, Robb Johnson, Waterson/Carthy, Bellowhead, Whapweazel, Shooglenifty, Dervish, Danu, Capercaille, Cara Dillon, June Tabor, Jim Moray and so many, many more! But Hey! I thought you might get a little fed up listening to me!


PLEASE, PLEASE DON'T deliberately misquote, misunderstand or misrepresent things. How big IS your wooden spoon? Why not use it to make sure that the 'mixture' for Sidmouth 2005 is as SMOOTH as possible! Don't just use it to STIR THINGS UP!

Positivity CAN make things happen! Negativity just ensures they don't! We all know that without Steve Heap, it's going to be a long, hard slog.....he warned everyone and no-one listened, but at least people ARE trying, we have to go forward without him now, however tricky that may be......unless Steve would consider coming back of course, but that is just a PERSONAL hope and is not to be twisted or used in a negative way either!

A very disgruntled Lizzie!!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie.......... also in Sidmouth!
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 04:51 PM

So, Steve at See Red, See Red, See Red, See Red! How are things going then?

Have you attended the meetings yet?
Or offered help?
Or written lots of positive letters to the Herald which are NOT about how popular your See Red site is and how it is visited by even people from the BBC?
Have you been able to help Tony Reed with trying to raise the £50,000 for a professional Fund Raiser?
Maybe you're willing to knock on people's doors and ask them to donate money?

It takes an AWFUL lot to make me lose my temper as I'm normally a quiet, placid, EXTREMELY happy Show of Hands fan....BUT....Stephen See Red....YOU have managed to make SMOKE come out of my ears!

If you have a personal ISSUE with Stuart Hughes, then take it up with him PERSONALLY, right away from Mudcat!! Right away from The Sidmouth Festival!

I think that to risk damaging this wonderful Festival with a personal vendetta is Absolutely Deplorable! If all you are hoping for in 2005 is that The Sidmouth Folk Festival falls flat on its' face then you should not be in the Folk World at all IMO!! You should be ashamed of yourself!


All I see on this thread is people being told to visit See Red...Page 32, See Red Page 46, See Red...See Red... OVER and OVER again and THEN I have to read yet ANOTHER of your letters in the Herald boasting about how many 'hits' your site has had!

Now I thought, perhaps naively, as I am the first to admit that I am 'nice but dim!' that the Folk World was a warm, friendly, incrediibly helpful community, full of vastly talented and kind people! That image is being horribly damaged on this thread! When I sit in The Arena in 2005 I would love to see people enjoying themselves and not a Civil War breaking out!

There are a lot of people who are going to be working REALLY hard next year to make 2005 work! Don't make it EVEN harder!


Why don't you change Seered to SeeGood! It will be much better for your blood pressure and mine! And FAR FAR BETTER for The Sidmouth Folk Festival 2005!! Once again, in Dougie MacLean's words...All Together, All As One!!

And I'll leave you with a quote from Disney's BAMBI........from Thumper the Rabbit!...."If you can't say ANYTHING NICE then don't
say ANYTHING AT ALL!



Lizzie (Ooh! I'm just soooooo..........!!!!!!!!!) :-0 :-0

PS The note above was from me too, but I forgot to put my name in the box! Sorry!! All this negativity....can't think straight!!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes
Date: 30 Oct 04 - 07:53 PM

As the person who appears to be the one under attack for trying (along with Chris Wale)and a host of other people who want to see something happen in Sidmouth in 2005, which in turn will provide the launch pad for 2006, may I say that I am not the person who does anything half baked. I can assure those who it seems just want to keep knocking that the Arena events programme will be of a very high standard. I am also not involved as a Councillor and so STOP referring to me as Cllr Hughes. I am involved with Chris Wale as the organisers of Sidmouth Carnival.....lETS ASK THESE KNOCKERS:- HAVE YOU EVER TRIED PUTTING A CARNIVAL PROCESSION TOGETHER?.....HAVE YOU EVER PUT ON A CARIBBEAN NIGHT EVENT?.......HAVE YOU EVER BUILT A CARNIVAL FLOAT?....WELL WE HAVE. In fact I and Chris have organised a total of TWENTY SIX processions in Sidmouth, THIRTEEN CARIBBEAN NIGHTS and have been involved in building TWELVE CARNIVAL FLOATS. All these events require the knowledge and expertise of Health and Safety and a host of other areas of legislation with which I am now well on top of. SO IF YOUR NOT AWARE OF THE FACTS KEEP YOUR MOUTHS SHUT OR CALL ME. Both Chris and myself are running just one small piece of the 2005 Sidmouth Folk Festival, but we are willing to offer the experience we have gained over the years to those running other events....THIS IS CALLED TEAM WORK and we are TEAM PLAYERS.
Finally there has been a lot of play on EDDC withdrawing the £60,000. EDDC hasn't ever put anything towards the Caribbean Night which has seen its costs spiral over the years. This year it cost £35,000 to stage and we covered it making a small profit. The Carnivals cost £5,000 to stage once again without any EDDC input. So you can't rely on EDDC funding their budgets are being squeezed by the Labour Government so if you want to knock someone Tony Blair's the man.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie......in Sidmouth
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 07:47 AM

Yey! You tell 'em Stuart! We're behind you and Chris and ALL the other POSITIVE people concerned! Thanks for the hard work! Don't let them grind you down!!

Lizzie :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Another Sidmouth resident
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 08:07 AM

Oh dear Stuart. Please don't start knocking Tony Blair on this website. We don't need you bringing your political beliefs into the debate on our Festival. All we want is constructive debate about how we retain a Festival that is loved by many. There is no place for politics in this. You do your cause a disservice by suggesting that Tony Blair and the Labour Government are somehow to blame for your Council withdrawing funding for the Sidmouth Festival. I know you well Stuart, I'm sure that in your councillor role you would not have engineered a situation where your Council withdrew funding from the Festival, causing Steve Heap to quit, leaving the field clear for you to step in, knight-in-shining armour, to save the day. You wouldn't do that would you Stuart. Of course you wouldn't.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,The Burnley Cloggies
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 08:21 AM

Our family have spent the morning reading all the posts on this site and many others. How depressing. We had hoped to read about people working together to keep the Sidmouth Festival going. Instead we read about councillors, residents, traders and others all arguing among themselves like a bunch of spoilt schoolchildren. With this kind of bickering going on it appears to us that any festival in 2005 cannot possibly be as enjoyable as those we have attended for ten years and more. It is therefore with heavy hearts that we have decided today not to think about returning to Sidmouth in 2005. We will go elsewhere.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 08:33 AM

<>

A fair enough point but as the organisers of 2005 events realise, it's not a normal year. People need to know that they can have the particular sort of Sidmouth 05 that they personally can enjoy SOON. Or you'll loose some of them.

I applaud Stuart Hughes and Ray Goodswen announcing events this early and with as much detail as possible. It's the way forward.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 08:52 AM

Edward said: "Have a year with no Festival in 2005 and local businesses will soon realise what a huge hole there is in their income. It's the only hope for persuading them to put their money where their mouths are"

I'm sure that 99% of Sidmouth businesses have already worked out the affect of no festival in 2005. Each one will come up with a different answer depending on the sort of business they are. Sure, just a FEW of them will havew a big shock if they actually experience the lack of a festival.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 09:00 AM

Stuart said: "Show of Hands are however confirmed and will be opening the Arena Concerts on Saturday 30th July. Strawbs are confirmed for Tuesday 2nd August and Battlefield Band Friday 5th August. The Family show on Monday 1st August also confirmed with The Wurzels"

Excellent post, Sir!

Specific events, with details is the way to go! Ok, they are not to my particular taste but for many people, this is SO much more useful than the vagueness, "being positive", slamming "negativity" etc. we've seen here recently.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 10:08 AM

Well, I guess this sorts out the newbies from the people who fell in love with Sidmouth and the festival when it was all on a much smaller scale.

I can remember the Sidmouth festivals when there wasn't even an Arena, and they were brilliant. So I'm expecting a smaller festival, plus Arena, to be brilliant too.

I also remember when the evening ceilidhs were rotated between Sidford, Sidbury and Newton Poppleford village halls, so that's not a new idea at all.

I'm looking forward to being in Sidmouth next year for the first week in August.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Roger Hayes
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 10:43 AM

Steve Harris is right to say some businesses will experience a big shock if there is no festival in 2005. He is also right to applaud all the people who are trying to stage some form of event next year. They deserve respect for at least trying.

The problem is that many of us who have travelled from far and wide to enjoy Sidmouth week each summer have little confidence in any event next year being anything like the festival we love.

Sadly my family, like The Burnley Cloggies, will NOT be returning to Sidmouth in 2005. There are many other festivals now to attract us and we hear there may even be a 'new' Sidmouth festival just along the coast early next August in an area where the local council are more welcoming and supportive than in East Devon.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Tony Day
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 11:33 AM

It's very sad - and more than a little silly - for people to be jumping to the conclusion that Sidmouth Folk Week 2005 will not be one that they will enjoy, on the basis of uninformed opinion from people who are not connected with the festival.

It is also very premature. It's not even November until tomorrow, but already a sound organizational model for next year is in place, with an enthusiastic and highly experienced team working up a significant and varied programme.

No, it won't be exactly like last year. There may be some things missing - equally there will be some new ideas. A few people will doubtless be disappointed - others will like the new style. But the spirit that is Sidmouth Festival be very much alive and well.

If you haven't got the details by Christmas, then by all means start complaining or deciding to go elsewhere - but have a little patience do!

In the meantime please try not to pay too much attention to the armchair wafflers who have offered nothing towards 2005 other than negativity on here.

It's gonna be a good 'un!

Tony


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 11:49 AM

I'm REALLY looking forward to next Sidmouth. I always do look forward to it, but from everything I've heard, it's going to be better in a lot of ways than the festival that has developed in recent years. Like Kitty, I remember the festival when it was smaller (though I don't go back to pre-Arena days!) and in a lot of ways it had more 'character' then. I know a lot of people who are putting a great deal of effort into the organising of the un-festival next year and I really don't think many people will be disappointed. I just wish everyone would stop bitching. It IS conterproductive, but it won't stop us from having a bloody good festival in the end

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: buttonbox
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 12:06 PM

good to hear some positive indications of plans for 2005 but unfortunate to hear that one or two people have already decided to go elsewhere.It would help restore confidence enormously if a respected organisation such as folk south west or efdss would take on some sort of 'overseeing' role , perhaps by becoming, with the agreement of all concerned, the sole purveyors of festival information, having of course first checked it's authenticity.They could also possibly be prevailed upon to operate some sort of official 2005 website.

This is not to suggest that either of these organisations take on an 'organisational' role. The present hotchpotch of information, counter information and indeed misinformation can only be overcome by such organisations adding public 'respectability' to the various rumoured 2005 plans


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,fgvrt.
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 12:29 PM


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 01:57 PM

There will be proper. organised information...as Tony said...just be patient

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie...still in Beautiful Sidmouth!!
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 02:55 PM

Earlier, Steve Harris mentioned that Show of Hands were not to his particular taste. Oh No! Steve! Surely Not? This can't be true!!
:-) :-)

I mean, just imagine.... 2005, a hot summer's day, a packed Arena, all of us sitting on the hill, when suddenly....Show of Hands appear on stage!!...Wow!!.....Maybe 'Tall Ships' 'You're Mine' or 'The Galway Farmer' echoing up through the Chestnut trees, the sun sparkling on the sea, away in the distance! The buses going up and down taking colourful, happy people
all around the town! What a PERFECT afternoon! Steve, you CAN'T miss that, you just CAN'T!

And down on the seafront, those Gorgeous Morris Dancers in their wild and colourful costumes, clacking away with their sticks and all those accordian players gently playing, with the sound of the waves in the background! Jacob's Ladder filled with Folkies and that incredible Tea Room at the top that does 'those' cakes, 3 feet high! All this and Show of Hands music drifting gently up to Salcombe Hill!

And Roger Hayes and The Burnley Cloggies, are you out there?

Now listen, you can't leave me all alone in Sidmouth next year! I wait for 51 weeks a year for my town to be filled with loving, joyous, zany, happy, colourful people! You just can't let a girl down like that! I would LOVE to watch The Burnley Cloggies clogging!

Anyway, it's lovely to suddenly start reading all these brilliant posts that are now starting to come in. Sidmouth 2005 will be a One-Off! a Collector's Item! Unique! A time to look back on and say "Ah yes! We were there in 2005! And what a time we had!"

And then it'll be on to Sidmouth 2006! Brilliant! Hope lots of you Morris Dancers are coming!! And all you Singers, Musicians and Ceilidh Dancers! I can see you all in The Bedford Hotel and Blackmore Gardens as I write! And The Sidmouth Fiddler is still waiting for you all up in Connaught Gardens. Just can't wait till you get here! So hurry up, please!!

Lizzie :-) :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: rhyzla
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 03:27 PM

Well , all I can say is, at last some positivity - amen to that!!

Well done Lizzie,   

Barry!!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Curious
Date: 31 Oct 04 - 07:24 PM

If there is to be a festival in 2005 how will everyone who attended in 2004 hear about it? I guess that only a relative handful know of this board. Most got their information through the Sidmouth festival mailshots. And who has the mailing list? Not Stuart, not Chris, not Barry, not Lizzie, not Rhyzla, not East Devon Council. No, I guess the mailing list remains with Steve Heap and Mrs. Casey Music. Are they likely to release it to the Council (and Councillor) who forced them out of Sidmouth? I guess not.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 03:11 AM

Just have patience Guest Curious.....all will be well.
And a lot of people who go to Sidmouth every year will turn up anyway...like most of the people who regularly do the fringe things.

Totally agree Lizzie...it's going to be really great...I can't wait!!!

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Google fan
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 05:22 AM

How to find out about Sidmouth 2005?? Try asking Google! Most people will not be thinking about it until after Christmas anyway. There is a long way to go yet.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Google fan
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 05:31 AM

Or if you want to know all about Stuart (councillor) Hughes just put [stuart hughes + sidmouth] into http://www.google.co.uk

Ticking "just pages from the UK" avoids material from the USA. This is the advantage of using the .co.uk rather than the .com version of Google


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,On The Make
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 06:07 AM

I did as Google Fan suggested. It scared me. Stuart (councillor) Hughes seems more interested in himself than the festival. I think I'll give 2005 a miss and will wait for reports from others before deciding whether to return in 2006.   Andy B


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Tony Day
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 07:00 AM

Clouseau ici

I like some 'elp in the searching for many missing persons on le catmud. Zer is ze mysterious "Cloggies from Burnley",
"Roger 'ayes", "Google fan", and "On ze Make".

My enquiries they reveal two things: all these mysterious "guests" subscribe to the same illogical thought processs about Sidmouth Festival. None of them have ever made any other posting to mudcat (click on their handles to confirm).

My suspicious mind he say "are zeez characters real? Or are they all one person, with one boring agenda, having zee spuddle?"

Well, all I can say to someone who 'as just arrived and says they are going again is "au revoir".

Clouseau, he know who you are!

Anon (not).


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie.....in glorious Sidmouth
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 09:57 AM

Well Tony, I'm going to Sidmouth 2005!!! No-one, but NO-ONE is going to put me off! Had to miss 2004 due to illness, not going to miss a second of 2005 though!!

Will you dance with me on the Seafront, in The Arena, or up at the Late Next Extra? I just love a man with a French Accent!! You could sing Show of Hands 'Country Life' to me in French...Oh! Mon Dieu!

Will you 'Follow me Down' (almost a Show of Hands song there! Whooo!) to The Torchlight Procession or up to Salcombe Hill to hear the music drifiting lazily up to heaven, and the cheers of the crowds as their favourite acts entertain them? We can watch the seafront from up there, absolutely thronged with people of every age, colour, and background. All having the time of their lives! So much to see and hear and enjoy!

Au Revoir Mon Cherie!

Lizzie


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 10:32 AM

Er...Lizzie.....have you actually MET Tony Day??????? Don't rush in before you do!

(Sorry Tony! :-))

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: John Golightly
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 11:47 AM

Hi All

I am one of the (in Tony Day's words) "two dozen people who spent an amicable, enthusiastic and hard working three and a half hours on the 23rd, putting together the bones of what is going to be a very enjoyable festival"

This is my personal view:

Everything I saw and heard was positive. There was no dissent, bickering or whingeing. There was a spirit of active and enthusiastic cooperation between people who had previously been working separately, and are now working together very much as a team.

Those present have different types of background & experience from inside and outside the folk world, and from inside and outside Sidmouth. I feel these individuals will complement and assist each other very well in putting on a worthwhile festival in 2005.

It won't be the same, of course. Neither will it be easy.
The "feel" will be the same as ever, I'm sure, but the execution (and scale) may well be quite different, so if you don't like change then brace yourself.

We'll see - bear with us, & keep the positive comments coming.

In answer to the question from "Guest (curious)" as to how festival-goers can be kept informed...we are building a mailing list from scratch, based on the expressions of interest already received via the EDDC website, the leaflets distributed at Towersey and people who have given their details to Bill Lankaster, or via the Email adress sidmouthfringe05@AOL.com.

This mailing list is in my custody at present.

I am still trying to find out whether the East Devon District Council website will continue to provide the facility for people to register their interest - but I suspect not. However it is planned that the new site at www.sidmouthfolkweek.org.uk will have the same functionality by late November.

In the meantime, if you'd like to be kept informed, please Email me your name (and snail-mail address if you really must - but we haven't bought any stamps yet!). Please set the "subject" to SIDLIST, or your Email will be discarded as spam.

I/we can give the usual undertaking that your details will not be passed on to any other organisation without your express permission.

My address is my name with a dot in the middle, then the squiggly thing, then "Rawlinson", then a dash, then "Hunter", then a dot, then "GG".

Please don't expect weekly - or even monthly updates - we all have day jobs too, and there's an awful lot to do! But we will do our best to keep you up to date.

That's all for now....watch this space, though.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Cats
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 12:44 PM

And apart from the dancers, singers and musicians, the storytellers will be back. We are looking for a suitable venue to hold sessions in for informal storytelling and already 2 well known storytellers have offered their services to do their 3/4 hour one person epics, one on the seal cycle of stories and one doing the story of Joan Wytte, the Fighting Fairy Woman of Bodmin who ended up as an exhibit in the Boscastle Witchcraft Museum. Both very rare opportunities to witness storytelling on this scale - the old bardic tradition. So, any storytellers out there who want to get involved - pm me.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: John Golightly
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 12:48 PM

..and further to my last, I have just learned that East Devon District Coucil will keep their website at http://www.eastdevon.gov.uk/index/community/leisure/sidmouth_international_festival_news.htm open for now, until the replacement mentioned in my last posting is up and running.

Any details entered there will be forwarded to me anyway...

Cheers

John G


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 04:23 PM

Well that's better isn't it? Positive postings...no bitching...let's keep it up!!!

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Sttaw Legend
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 04:31 PM

"let's keep it up"

MBSLynne doesn't this belong on your other thread, I think you're getting excited?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 05:50 PM

Sttaw Legend..I get excited on ALL the threads!!! But yes, it's an innuendo I missed! Damn! I'll be thrown out of the club!!

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Sttaw Legend
Date: 01 Nov 04 - 06:50 PM

"I'll be thrown out of the club"

I feel sure people will only be to willing to put you back in the club.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Tony Day
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 01:26 AM

Er...Sttaw Legend.....have you actually MET Lynne???????

(Er, touche Lynne, as Clouseau might say, if he could find the accent thingy on 'is keyboard! :-))

Love Tony

PS Lizzie - you clearly haven't seen moi dance, and sorry I can't take you to torchlight, as I have to do certain things in a certain Anchor bar at that particular time....

I know a man who might, though!

Tony


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Merina
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 10:40 AM

Having struggled through this thread:

My first Sidmouth: 2004 festival superbly professionally organised, nearly 1000 events, wild LNEs at the Dance House, and the likes of Bellowhead and Banditaliana.

Possible 2005 festival: dodgy organisation, dances in school halls, the Wurzels and Show Of Hands.

No contest: I'm off to see what festivals take place over in Europe around the beginning of August. Any recommendations?


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 11:10 AM

Whitby late August Google for the rest
I think I'll join you after reading about these children


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: manitas_at_work
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 11:11 AM

Dranouter in Belgium is a good one. A small village in a National Park on the French border (just a bus ride from Lille) is swamped by thousands of folkies. Lots of Euro-folk, World Music and a fair few bands from Britain and Ireland. Often top acts from pop, rock and country are on the main stage.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 11:14 AM

``mailing list remains with Steve Heap and Mrs. Casey Music. Are they likely to release it to the Council (and Councillor) who forced them out of Sidmouth? I guess not. ''

There's a more attractive possibility than that anyway. Ask Steve Heap to mail out an envelope containing a Sidmouth 05 leaflet plus some leaflets about his own projects.

He might do it for less than the cost of all those stamps. Thinkk win-win


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 11:25 AM

Lizzie said: "I mean, just imagine.... 2005, a hot summer's day, a packed Arena, all of us sitting on the hill, when suddenly....Show of Hands appear on stage!!... What a PERFECT afternoon! Steve, you CAN'T miss that, you just CAN'T!"

I'd rather be dancing, at a story-tellihng session or trying a cream tea workshop :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 11:48 AM

Google fan: "Or if you want to know all about Stuart (councillor) Hughes just put [stuart hughes + sidmouth] into http://www.google.co.uk"

Interesting reading indeed. The man seems to be a politician :-) And a colourful one. It is surprising that a town like Sidmouth has contnued to elect him - the place has gone up in my eyes. But, Oh dear, his polical opponents don't like him!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 12:12 PM

Actually, I didn't really do Stuart Hughes justice. "Colourful", no he's "extremely colourful". Here's an extract from http://www.ebroadcast.com.au/lookup/encyclopedia/of/Official_Monster_Raving_Loony_Party.html

the first Raving Loony to win as a result of a straight vote (as opposed to being elected unopposed) was Stuart Hughes taking the safe Conservative seat of Sidmouth Wolbrook on East Devon District Council (he then took a seat on the Sidmouth Town Council from the Conservatives the following day) in May 1991. His election was met with fury and quite disproportionate hostility from the local Tories. Hughes reaction was to make their lives an absolute misery for the next three years (this included refusing to pay his Poll Tax and then dumping a load of scrap metal in the middle of the council chambers to the value of his unpaid "Community Charge"), and forming an alliance known as "The Coastals" (because of the seats they held) of Independants and the sole Green Party councillor that gave East Devon's ruling Conservatives the first true opposition they'd faced for decades (the local Liberal Democrat and Labour Parties being negligble).

Hughes was to retain his seats when up for election with increased majorities, and the final humiliation for the Conservatives came when he took the Devon County Council seat from the local party's Chief Whip in the council. Hughes remains a member of all three councils to this day.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: John Routledge
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 12:38 PM

Just the sort of guy to be running a folk Festival :0)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie..... in the Land of The SoH Cream Te
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 01:02 PM

Dear Steve,

My God! You're RIGHT!! Show of Hands COULD WELL be compared to a Cream Tea! Why haven't I seen it before!!!!


Something you wait with Melting Anticipation to experience all year round!

A Truly Sumptuous Treat on a Summer's Afternoon!

The warmth of those scones, only equal in sensation to the warmth of a Show of Hands Audience!

Something that stays in your memory all the way home and for many months later!

The care that you take when spreading the cream, the jam, and the eagerness with which hand lifts scone to mouth, only equal to the care that you take when you unpack your brand new Show of Hands DVD, (The Big Gig and Stairway to Devon combined!!!)and put it eagerly, but oh so gently, in your DVD player!

And that Melt in the Mouth Moment....when scone and cream and jam combine.....just like the first time you heard 'Cousin Jack' filling the air in The Arena a few years back! A truly unforgettable moment
when Cornish history, miner and emigrant are brought together, topped deliciously with the haunting fiddle of Phil Beer and drizzling with Steve Knightley's wonderful lyrics!

And both only ever to be found in Devon and Cornwall! Home of the Original Cream Tea and the Incredibly Original Show of Hands!!

And you ALWAYS remember your very first Cream Tea, just as you remember your first Show of Hands concert, when you fell in love with a music the like of which you'd never heard before!! :-) :-)

Come to Sidmouth 2005 Steve, and I will teach you how to make a Cream Tea whilst listening to my Show of Hands CD's! Two Magical Moments in just one day!! Irresistible!!! :-) :-) :-)

Phew! Need a cup of tea after that!!

Lizzie :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 05:35 PM

Lizzie said: "Come to Sidmouth 2005 Steve, and I will teach you how to make a Cream Tea whilst listening to my Show of Hands CD's! Two Magical Moments in just one day!! Irresistible!!! :-) :-) :-)"

Hmm, but can you dance? :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: steve_harris
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 06:01 PM

"the storytellers will be back. We are looking for a suitable venue to hold sessions in for informal storytelling"

Excellent news! I would like to see a return to more particpative events.

Have you heard of a pub called the "Volunteer" with a garden? :-))))))


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: MBSLynne
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 06:31 PM

That's where we run the "Ashby de la Zouch folk club" on the first Friday night. It has run for 14 years and will do so again next year

Love Lynne


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes
Date: 02 Nov 04 - 06:44 PM

Unfortunateley the website which carries my so called political history hasn't quite got the story correct. I was indeed elected as Britain's first ever Raving Loony to a District Council in 1991 and took a seat from the sitting Conservative. The following day I was elected to the Town Council as an Independent (No party politics on Sidmouth Town Council) I was elected to the County Council in 1993 as an Independent. I joined the Conservative Party in 1997. Hope that that has set the record straight..... now how about concentrating on Sidmouth Folk Week 2005 and beyond....... Over to you Lizzie


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie...Dancing in Sidmouth
Date: 03 Nov 04 - 08:08 AM

So Steve said " Hmmm but can you dance Lizzie? (or something like that anyway!!!)"

Steve! Can I DANCE? I'm starting to OYSTER DANCE!! Hands Above Your Head Dancing! Swaying! Jumping! Rocking! Shouting! Joyous Kind of Gypsy Dancing! Wild!!   Not only have I discovered Show of Hands but I've discovered The Oysterband too!!! Whooo!

How can a person have SO MUCH luck in one lifetime AND get to live in Beautiful Sidmouth! Home of the Best Folk Festival in The World!

It's a Truly Beautiful day down here in Sidmouth, the sun is sparkling on the sea, (sorry guys if this is making you fed up!)
The Arena is drying out nicely after the rain, and in just 7/8 months I will be sitting down on the grass singing Show of Hands 'Country Life' at the top of my voice....And CROOKED MAN...Oh Wow! Seriously brilliant song!!! Just listen to this:

"There was a Crooked Man with a Crooked Smile,
He made his plans and walked a Crooked Mile,
He went to live in the big house,
Then started fires no one could douse.
He fanned the flames and he poured on oil,
Till the desert burned and the ocean bolied,
At night in the darkness of his room,
The Crooked Man danced to another's tune.    !!!!!!!! :-) Wow!

And THAT's just the First Verse!!!! Very appropriate song for Tony and George!

?????????Why does The Department of Culture pour money into Casinos but will give NOTHING towards our FOLK FESTIVALS?????????? Apparently has to keep at 'Arm's Length' from any such decision!! Are they at 'Arm's Length' from Casinos?? Tessa Jowell seems to be lying across the tables!!! I'm puzzled!


Well...I'm just off to look at The Sidmouth Fiddler,(I think we should have a statue of STEVE HEAP in Connaught Gardens as well, because we owe him SO much!)

Then I'm going to dip my toes in the sea and imagine my town Alive with All Of You!!! And Dream that maybe, just maybe The Oysterband can come as well!!! Show of Hands AND Those Oysters.......just the thought is too much!!!!

Lizzie :-)


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: el_punkoid_nouveau
Date: 03 Nov 04 - 08:37 AM

Oh for God's Sake!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I thought we were trying to resurrect a folk festival - we have several people here harping on about the politics of Sidmouth Town Council, and who was in which Political Party. Can we forget the effing politics, work together with the guys like Tony and Bill, and put something together?

I thought that for the first time in years, I might actually enjoy teh festival next year - but if you guys don't stop bickering, there won't be time to organise it. Put yer bloody egos down - especially Seered - and think about what you are trying to achieve.

Share and enjoy!

epn


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Stuart Hughes
Date: 03 Nov 04 - 10:30 AM

Well said el punkoid nouveau....'I didn't start this'.
Lets get on with the job in hand, that being to put on a festival in 2005 that will lay the foundations for 2006.

Stuart


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Roger Hayes
Date: 03 Nov 04 - 11:33 AM

As Stuart Hughes was a Monster Raving Loony Councillor before becoming a Conservative (is there any difference?) then that certainly makes him suitable for organising next year's Festival. Only a raving nutter would try and do what experienced professionals could not, organise a Festival that adds up financially without EDDCs £60,000 funding AND satisfies all the Council's environmental health and safety regulations. Just because Stuart is a councillor he won't be able to avoid the latter. Health & Safety regulations are VERY strict these days and they apply to the Festival irrespective of who the organiser is. As for Tony Day's earlier post asking if I exist, you should know Tony as you spent quite a time chatting to me only a few weeks ago. You didn't know my name. You certainly know my face!


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: John Golightly
Date: 03 Nov 04 - 06:05 PM

Hey Guys

This thread is getting into a deep deep hole, and should be terminated. Forthwith.

The problem is that there are a few enthusiasts who are deeply committed to "resurrecting a folk festival" (to quote el punkoid nouveau [thanks!]), who are trying to using this thread in a positive manner, to inform mudcatters about what's happening, and to glean constructive ideas from the silent majority.

Instead of which the thread has become a thoroughly and deeply boring and puerile exchange of shots between various individuals, of such a size that it takes me B**** ages to download it.

Let's wipe the slate clean.

I suggest 2 new threads.

The first - "Sidmouth 2005+ - news, info & support". If you have news, or something positive or constructive to say , then this is the place.

The second - "Sidmouth 2005+ - opinions" - if you have a problem with the way things are going, or which individual is involved in helping them go that way, then it's all yours.

Mr "Burnley Cloggies" - feel free to contribute to the second of these . Maybe it's just as well that there's no such side - otherwise they would probably have come and cloggied all over you for speaking on their behalf..and Merina - I have just the thing for you - try
http://www.whatsonwhen.com/print/viewevent.asp?id=15012
(I'm deadly serious here... have a look)

I won't start the 2 threads unless there's some support - but I feel strongly that we need to do something here. If anyone wants to start them on their own - feel free.

Many thanks to all (esp. Lizzie, MBSLynne, Cats, Herga, Tony, The Barden of England and others)who have tried to brighten up our lives and move things forward.

I mentioned the silent majority...if you are a "lurker" and you have been trawling through this lot, and you agree with what I say then speak up PLEASE on this thread - are you out there? (sorry for shouting)

John Golightly


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Tony Day
Date: 03 Nov 04 - 07:49 PM

Sounds good to me John Golightly! Split the thread, and kill this one! (How do you do that?)

And apols to Roger Hayes, as you are clearly real (unlike at least some of the other posts! Identical punctuation errors!!) But please, don't desert Sidmouth just yet - not only might you regret it deeply, but you sound the sort of person I for one would like to see in town next August.

Tony


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Roger Hayes
Date: 03 Nov 04 - 08:17 PM

Thank you Tony. I will wait and see how the proposed 51st festival takes shape before deciding whether to attend. I do support those who are working hard to make things happen but I also hope they really do know what they are doing as half a festival could be worse than no festival at all.


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: Tony Day
Date: 04 Nov 04 - 01:14 AM

Fine! When you see the full programme is the time to decide whether to come or not - and that won't be for a couple of months yet. Please don't decide on the basis of Mudcat's sometimes rather malicious meanderings!

Tony


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Chris Wale
Date: 04 Nov 04 - 03:38 AM

I am amazed by the type of comments from some of you guys, we trying to support Sidmouth here and the many who enjoy folk music as a whole. Lets stop the belittling and the egoism and join together in making and supporting the Sidmouth Festival 2005.

How many of you know Stuart on a personal basis? I've had the pleasure of working not as a Councillor but in the capacity as an individual member of the public as Stuart is also (and a family man)and we work for the interests of Sidmouth Town and valley. Lets detach the politics in some of these issues, and get on with the job of allowing a 2005 festival to take place.

Well done Lizze, great to see some common sense statements>>>

All the best
Chris


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: fiddler
Date: 04 Nov 04 - 03:43 AM

Joe Clones - see the latest posts and praps take some action please!

We are asking you for once!

Andy


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: GUEST,Lizzie in Sidmouth
Date: 04 Nov 04 - 06:00 AM

Well, all I can say is that I'm looking forward to dancing on the seafront with Roger Hayes and Steve Harris next August! :-) :-)

Sun's out again today, glistening on the waves and shining all the way from Salcombe Hill to Peak Hill!

PLEASE start those New Titles John!!

Lizzie


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Subject: RE: 51st Sidmouth festival
From: John Golightly
Date: 04 Nov 04 - 06:25 AM

OK Lizzie, here goes:

--------------------


Several people have expressed a wish to terminate this thread and replace it with 2 others.

If you have news, questions (straight, not rhetorical), suggestions, or something positive/constructive/forward-looking to say,
then please go to
Sidmouth 2005+ - news, info & support


If you have a problem with the way things are going, or with which individuals is/are involved in helping them go that way, or if you want to discuss past history or high-level strategic issues, or ask a rhetorical question, then try

Sidmouth 2005+ - opinions


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Mudcat time: 23 October 10:40 AM EDT

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