GuilFest under threat after 21 successful years

BAD weather and a dip in ticket sales have put the future of the annual GuilFest in doubt.

Scotty Ltd, the company behind the festival which celebrated its 21st event this year, has ceased trading.

Festival founder Tony Scott, who comes from Woking, ­issued a statement saying: “Scotty Events Ltd regret to announce that GuilFest has ceased to trade due to poor ticket sales at this year’s event in July.


“We assess that this was down to the worst weather conditions we have experienced in the history of the festival, combined with intense competition presented this year from other events.

“Ongoing matters now lie in the hands of the insolvency ­practitioner Leigh Adams LLP.”

The statement also thanked “everybody who has been involved in working with the festival in its 21 years”, from artists to festival-goers. It added: “It has been a privilege and a pleasure to organise GuilFest and see it evolve into the renowned festival it has become.”

The festival began 21 years ago as a one-day event, then known as the Guildford Festival of Folk and Blues, attracting around 500 people.

Over the years acts have included Paul Weller, Pulp, Madness, Adam Ant, Status Quo, The Human League, Happy Mondays, Blondie and The Stranglers.

In 2006 GuilFest was awarded the title of ‘Best Family festival’ in the UK Festival Awards.

This year’s three-day event held at Stoke Park, Guildford, in July featured headliners Olly Murs, Jools Holland, Bryan Ferry, Tim Minchin, Gary Numan and Ash.

Bruce Foxton from The Jam said: “I know Tony Scott as a mate and I’m just very saddened by it all.

“There’s been quite a few ­festivals this year that have been scuppered by bad weather, ­whether that’s for good or not, who knows.

“I just hope GuilFest will ­re-emerge sooner rather than later somehow. I guess someone will just have to take it on.”

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About the Author: Barry Rutter