Isle of Wight Festival organisers make 'major improvements' to roads following last year's mudbath
Music-lovers need not fear bad weather at this year's Isle of Wight Festival following major improvements to the access routes to the site, according to the promoter.
At last year's event, heavy rainfall in the days before led to the car parks turning into mudbaths making them inaccessible and leading to massive traffic queues. This meant that even ferries became stranded in the Solent because they were unable to unload any more vehicles on to the island.
But John Giddings, promoter of the festival which is now in its 12th year, has pledged there will be no repeat of last year's mayhem as he will be providing increased car parking space with asphalt entrances to the car parks and segregated traffic routes to prevent festival traffic from interfering with local traffic.
He said: "What happened last year was we had a month's worth of rain in 24 hours and the car parks just became inaccessible - that will never happen again. To avoid a repeat, there will be twice as much car parking space and there will be proper roads at the entrances and exits."
As well as the improvements to the practicalities, Mr Giddings has transformed many of the attractions away from the main stages with new ones including a bohemian wood, cabaret club, extended dance tent, hot tubs and a bigger beach.
And festival-goers will also be able to experience art in action with a piece of stone the size of a Stonehenge slab being transformed into a piece of sculpture during the weekend.
Explaining the increased attention to events away from the stages, Mr Giddings said: "People like to be entertained, they do not want to watch groups all the time because it's four days in a field which can be gruelling and they want time and space to relax somewhere and chill out.
"They want to be treated properly, it's not the 1970s when you just dug a ditch in a field for a toilet, they want to be looked after."
Describing a typical visitor to the Isle of Wight Festival, he added: "I would describe them as someone who likes music, likes to enjoy themselves, who just likes to experience things."
And Mr Giddings said that he was as excited about this year's line-up, to be headlined by Bon Jovi, The Killers and The Stone Roses, as he was about his first event.
He said: "I am still excited, the moment I'm not, I won't be coming any more."
Mr Giddings added that he enjoyed putting together a varied line-up and choosing up-and-coming bands and seeing them flourish by the time they reach the festival.
He said: "A big part of the fun of putting together the line-up is predicting where a group will be...like Bastille have really taken off and I'm really excited to have them on the Saturday afternoon."
Describing how he chooses the artists, he added: "It's great to have the heritage of the Isle of Wight Festival with Bob Dylan and The Doors, it was the Woodstock of Europe and we have to be true to that and we should never forget that.
"Although we will never have 600,000 people come to the island again - it brought the island to a standstill."
Other acts performing at the festival, which runs from June 13 to 16 at Seaclose Park, Newport, include Paul Weller, Emeli Sande, Jake Bugg, Everything Everything, Blondie, Imagine Dragons, Ellie Goulding, Rizzle Kicks and Republica with the event starting on the Thursday night with The Farm and Happy Mondays.
film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
- 2 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 3 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 4 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 5 Canadian woman suing police who locked her in van with sex offender who then raped her
Gorillaz Phase 4: Cartoon supergroup is back as new artwork is unveiled
Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
As Better Call Saul launches, here are the other spin-off shows we need to see
Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
Sia apologises for 'Elastic Heart' music video that sees Shia LaBeouf wrestle 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
Hard line on immigration could cost Tories the election