Scotland's Festival of History
Regrettably this is to let you know that with great reluctance we have been forced to cancel Scotland’s Festival of History this year.
The heavy rain on the Saturday of last year’s show resulted in a dramatic decrease in visitor numbers, ultimately resulting in a small but significant loss.
At that point we had two options, wind up the event (which would have meant groups, demonstrators and event suppliers etc not getting paid) or the route we opted for. This involved using our funds set aside for 2014 set-up costs (for all the pre-event bills) to ensure everyone was paid.
Since then we have been trying to replace that cash through grant funding , sponsorship, etc – unfortunately without success.
We have decided to cancel now to give those planning to take part in 2014 a chance of finding bookings elsewhere.
After more than 10 years of running this event, the largest in Scotland, cancellation hurts.
I know some people are under the mistaken apprehension that the festival is run on behalf of the local council, etc.
However it is basically run by a very small group of five volunteers, headed by Rosalind and I, and ably assisted on the weekend by Gail and the Glasgow Vikings. Financially we get a small local authority grant to cover site hire, etc – so it is essential each festival covers its costs if we are to avoid making personal losses.
Whilst the local council have continued their normal financial and in-kind support they are unable to help any further, thanks to having to make £13 million in cuts to their own budget and making around 170 redundant.
Another council have asked for talks, with a view to moving the festival to a city location from 2015. However, even if these talks are fruitful, nothing could be done in time to save the 2014 event.
So on behalf of myself, Rosalind and the other festival volunteers, may I thank you for your past support, and hopefully we will see you in some guise during the coming year.
The cancellation of the festival does not affect the Lanark show in May, which I am co-ordinating. That event has a commercial sponsor.
And we are looking at something much more off the wall and spectacular, from 2016+ - so watch this space!
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