The festival industry across Australia is reeling, with the Byron Bay Bluesfest and Splendour in the Grass the highest profile casualties that have been forced to postpone or cancel following a ban of non-essential events over 500 people.
The organisers of Bluesfest took to social media to announce the postponement of their Easter festival which will now be held on October 23-25.
“It is obvious we will not be on this Easter,” the post read.
“We are heartbroken as we believed we were presenting one of the best ever bills of talent for you.
“I was in discussions right through last week with every headline – they all said they’re coming as long as nothing occurred to prevent them from doing so.
“That is the level of commitment that our artists have. And I am proud of that.
“I must now thank every one of you for supporting us. The emails and posts are deeply appreciated at this time.
“We are now working through how to move forward and to give you details. I thank you for allowing us enough time to get everything in place for the best possible outcome for everyone.”
Splendour in the Grass has also been postponed by three months from its original dates in July.
“In these unpredictable times, in an effort to ensure a safe Splendour in the Grass experience, we will reschedule the 20th-anniversary edition to the new dates in October,” the organisers said.
This year’s regional touring festival Groovin The Moo has also been cancelled, as have many smaller regional festivals and events.
In regional NSW, the Australian Street Rod Federation (ASRF) 2020 Regional Nationals has cancelled it planned event in Goulburn over the Easter long weekend.
“This is devastating in so many ways – for the committee who had been working almost two years to deliver this event, the sponsors who were supporting the Easter event at Goulburn, our fantastic traders, the awesome vehicles that were attending with their owners and guests, and most importantly, the town of Goulburn and its tourism industry and other businesses working to support us over the weekend,” ASRF Director ACT and Region, Alan Cooper said.
“I believe this is the first time an ASRF event of this level has had to be cancelled, and for that we are truly sorry. We now ask for your patience and understanding as we work through the process of refunding entry fees to those that have already paid. We will be in touch with entrants about this as soon as possible.”