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UK festival scene facing collapse due to the impact coronavirus, report finds

The Association of Independent Festivals (AIF) is calling on government aid for businesses that face devastating costs due to cancellation

The UK's independent festival industry faces collapse due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic without government aid, a new report has shown.

The Association of Independent Festivals (AIF), which represents 65 events including Boomtown, Bluedot and Field Day, reports that 92% of its members now face costs that could destroy their business due to cancellation.

According to The Guardian, those costs include potential refunds of up to £800m, and an average outlay of £375,000 for overheads including marketing, staffing and advertising, which cannot be recouped due to the cancellation of events. The AIF also reports that 98% of its members are uninsured for cancellation due to COVID-19.

Speaking about the impact of coronavirus on independent festivals, AIF chief executive Paul Reed said, "This is not a temporary shutdown of business — it is an entire year of income and trade wiped out."

He stated that many independent festivals do not meet lending criteria to access funds via the government’s coronavirus business interruption loan scheme.

During the coronavirus pandemic, you can support the electronic music industry here.