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Beverley Folk Festival goes into liquidation

One of Beverley’s major annual attractions, the Folk Festival, has gone into liquidation and this year’s planned event, due to take place from June 15 to 17, will not now take place.

The shock news was revealed by the organisers this morning (April 23) along with an admission that they were not in a position to refund any money to those who had bought advanced tickets.

Thousands attend the annual event, which this year marked its 35th anniversary.

As recently as March 27, the festival was announcing the names of artists due to appear at the three-day event on Beverley Racecourse, including the Saturday night headline act, the Demon Barbers XI. Others booked included BBC Radio Folk Award winners Lau.

The statement issued yesterday stated:  “It is with immense sadness and regret that we have to announce that this year’s festival cannot go ahead.

“Beverley Folk Festival is a non-profit-making organisation, run by a dedicated team of volunteers. Unfortunately we have recently discovered that we have lost our primary source of funding so we simply do not have the money to pay for either the infrastructure or the performers.

“We know that there will be a lot of people who are as disappointed as we are but we hope you will understand that, under the circumstances in which we find ourselves, it is not possible to run the event.

“Unfortunately the company is unable to refund those people who have bought tickets in advance of the festival.

“The directors, who are also volunteers, have taken the steps to place the company into a creditors’ voluntary liquidation as the company is insolvent. The directors have instructed a firm of licensed insolvency practitioners to assist them with this process and if you are owed money or have bought a ticket in advance then they will be in touch with you shortly.”

The statement continued: “If you have made a deposit for or paid for goods or services by credit or debit card and the goods or services are not going to be received by the due date, you may be able to get your money back by claiming a refund from your card issuer. Please contact your card issuer as soon as you can if this may apply to you. Further information including on time limits that apply is available from the UK Cards Association Credit and Debit Cards: A consumer guide

‘The directors would like to thank all those who have supported Beverley Folk Festival over the years, especially the sponsors, funders, East Riding of Yorkshire Council, Beverley Town Council and the hundreds of wonderful volunteers and artists.

‘In addition, whilst thanking the thousands of loyal festival-goers who have made the event a joy, the directors also offer their deepest and most sincere apologies to all those who are owed money by the company.

‘This has been an incredibly difficult and heart-breaking decision for all involved.  However, the directors acknowledge that for almost 35 years Beverley Folk Festival has brought something special to the town, which was loved and enjoyed by so many people from far and wide.

“Please note that the company has ceased to trade with immediate effect and any voicemail / messages will not be read or dealt with.

“Our corporate recovery licensed insolvency practitioners:   Redman Nichols Butler, The Chapel, Bridge Street, Driffield, East Yorkshire, YO25 5DA Tel: 01377 257788.”

Following  the announcement, Beverley Racecourse, which has hosted the festival since 2013, said it was “deeply disappointed” the event wouldn’t go ahead and “sympathised with everyone who has bought tickets and may be left out of pocket.”

A spokesman told Beverley FM: “Beverley Racecourse has been delighted to host the folk festival and to have helped the event grow over recent years. This year’s festival was due to be the sixth held on the Westwood and we were looking forward to a successful and enjoyable weekend.

“We have provided the racecourse as the festival venue at a significantly subsidised rate, as we wanted to support the festival as a major event for Beverley. We also offered to be paid following the event, to help the festival’s cashflow. Event organisers would usually be required to pay a deposit to secure the racecourse, as is normal commercial practice.

“We have not been paid for hosting the festival in 2017, so we are among the creditors.

“It is a great shame that this long-established and much-loved festival will not be held this year. Beverley Folk Festival was enjoyed by thousands of people and boosted the local economy and the profile of Beverley, so it will be sorely missed.”