17th April 2018
Major improvements to Accessibility and Eco-friendliness
The holy grail of UK rock music, Download Festival 2018, is nearly upon us (8-10 June, 2018), with a solid line-up to tempt old and new rockers alike, including a three-hour set by headliners Guns N’ Roses, one of Ozzy‘s last live solo performances, and plenty of up and coming and unusual bands in the smaller marquees, this year’s festival looks set to be a stunner.
Download Festival 2017 Photo: Kevin Gaughan
Music in Leicester were at the press day to get the latest news from the organisers and the people that run the show. The main changes to this year’s festival will be around accessibility and reducing the festival’s impact on the environment.
Speaking about the latest improvements, Festival Republic’s, Melvin Benn says:
“Download Festival is built upon an ethos of inclusivity and it’s incredibly important to us that as many people as possible are able to enjoy the festival to the fullest. The appointment of accessibility ambassadors has provided us with invaluable feedback so that we’re able to implement practical improvements to site that we hope will dramatically improve the experience for all. Being awarded a 4 out of 5 star Creative Green Certification is a huge milestone for Download Festival, and in this current climate I can’t help but feel proud of what we are doing to protect the environment including the introduction of Greenpeace’s Eco Campsite.”
A Day to Remember at Download Festival 2017 Photo: Kevin Gaughan
When asked about the re-introduction of cash at last year’s festival, as opposed to pre-loading a bar-coded account with money, Melvin said “Last year around 100 people, for one reason or another couldn’t use the electronic system, 100 people out of the tens of thousands that came may not seem like much, but I wouldn’t have liked to have been one of those 100 and so, just one person is one too many.”
WWE NXT wrestling at Download Festival 2017 Photo: Kevin Gaughan
- The main points from the press day:
- Raised platforms for people in wheelchairs will be at all of the stages
- The platforms at the main and Zippo Encore stages will have British Sign Language performance interpreters to interpret performances for deaf people
- People camping at the accessible campsite will be able to drive right up to their tent to off-load their equipment
- The Castle Donington Volunteer Centre will continue to provide free, nearly 24 hour transport to & from the access campsite.
- A 50 point charging tent will be available to charge wheelchairs
- Greenpeace will be hosting a new eco-campsite where you will need to agree to abide by their eco-guidelines. You will need to pre-register for these at no extra cost. The eco-campsite can accommodate up to 3000 campers who enjoy being at one with the environment as well as their rock music. The campsite will be in an area of the Castle Donington estate with old oak trees and thriving wildlife. Greenpeace will encourage the development of an eco-community.
Aerosmith at Download Festival 2017 Photo: Kevin Gaughan
The Zippo Encore stage at Download Festival 2017 Photo: Kevin Gaughan