Wizard’s year off

The North-east’s biggest music event - Wizard Festival - will take a year off in 2012, as organisers look at plans for a possible new date for the event in 2013.

There are also plans to refocus on the size and scale of the event, which has been held at the New Deer showground at New Deer for the last five years.

As the North-east’s only successful two-day music festival, which welcomed more than 5,000 fans through its gates last year, Organisers have said that it is time to take a look at what the festival can really bring to the North-east and wants to take the year off to develop partnerships with local businesses, the local council and community groups.

The team behind Wizard have also said that they will look into funding options, in order to make the event stronger and more sustainable.

Wizard Festival organiser Roy Thain said: “It’s been a difficult decision to make but we think it is the right one.

“Lots of events are using the Olympics and jubilee celebrations as a reason to take a year off and look at what they are doing and we think the time is right for us to take some time off to reflect on where the festival is going.

“Bottom line is we are a very small team and we want to look at where the festival is going and how we can make it better for our fans.

“A year off will give us some breathing space to check the suitability of potential new dates for the event and some much needed time to investigate funding options as well as building a network of partnerships with the local authority, community groups and businesses.”

Wizard Festival began in 2007 and is the biggest two day music festival in the North-east. Over the last five years it has grown to include four stages, a large campsite, a full kid’s programme and a DJ tent.

The festival has trebled in size and now attracts music lovers from all over the UK and abroad. It has been instrumental in bringing some of the UK’s biggest acts to the New Deer showground since it began in 2007.

Acts such as James, Happy Mondays, Supergrass, The Stranglers and The Charlatans all made the trip to New Deer.

Roy said: “The local fans have been behind the event from the start and we can’t thank local farmers, businesses and fans enough for all their great enthusiasm for the festival over the last five years. It has been a real adventure for all of us since Wizard started and the fans have played a huge part in that journey.”