T in the Park 2017 cancelled: Scottish festival to take year off

'The constraints - logistically and financially - that the resulting planning conditions put upon us are simply not workable'

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The Independent Culture

Scotland’s biggest music festival T in the Park will not take place next year, organisers have confirmed. According to their statement, the festival will “take a break” for the first time in 23 years due to pressure from authorities. 

Back in 2015, T in the Park was forced to move location - from Balado airfield to Strathallan Castle - leading to additional regulations being put in place. One of the requirements was getting planning permission thanks to an osprey’s nest, only recently discovered at the location. (Ospreys are a protected species of bird.)

“The constraints – logistically and financially – that the resulting planning conditions put upon us are simply not workable,” the statement reads. 

Before the 2015 event, a spokesperson for DF Concerts - the festival’s organisers - acknowledged the presence of ospreys, but said: “the expert opinion of our ornithologist is that they have not yet nested. We will continue to liaise with the relevant organisations to ensure the protection of the birds."

It was reported just yesterday that the team behind the festival were looking to create a new festival in Glasgow Green, with MSP John Swinney voicing his support for the festival. 

T in the Park’s full statement reads

For over 23 years, T in the Park has been at the heart of Scotland’s music scene – with you by our side. But for now, sadly, we need to take a break.

We launched T in the Park with one aim: to give Scottish music fans an unforgettable weekend with their friends, enjoying the best acts from around the globe. And to say we achieved this together is an understatement. T in the Park has become one of the best known, biggest and most loved festivals in the world.

When we launched back in 1994 there were only two music festivals in the UK – now there are many and T in the Park paved the way for all that have come and gone in Scotland since. We created more than just a festival; we created a family and decades of wonderful memories.

However, the last couple of years have had their challenges. Against our will, and despite a prolonged fight, we were forced to move from Balado, Kinross in 2015. This move was a mammoth task for the event and one that was compounded by a series of onerous site restrictions placed upon us as preparations for the event in 2015 took place.

As the build-up to the festival was well under way we were informed by Scottish government ministers that we would have to apply for full Planning Permission due to the presence of an unregistered, but protected in law, osprey’s nest. The constraints – logistically and financially – that the resulting planning conditions put upon us are simply not workable.

We tried our best to work with the pressures placed upon the site by bringing in an additional team and fixing the first-year traffic issues, but ultimately we’re not in control of the overall site layout and the continued restrictions means that the negative impact on our fans and the limitations placed on their experience is too great.

We now need to take stock and take a year out to try to resolve the issues so that we can once again deliver the kind of camping festival you are used to and deserve.

People are understandably upset by the news.

Whether a new festival will take place in a new location remains unconfirmed. 

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