VOICES OF THE FUTURE: Download Festival Pilot begins as fans hope Leeds Fest goes ahead

Kyha Gott explains why the Download Festival pilot plays a massive role in determining whether major music events will go ahead.

Friday, 18th June 2021, 11:45 am
Download Festival 2008 (Dave Etheridge-Barnes/Getty Images)
Download Festival 2008 (Dave Etheridge-Barnes/Getty Images)

Several months into the Pandemic and things are slowly starting to get back to normal. However, the country is still battling to ensure little-to-no outbreaks from people attending events in their thousands. This weekend will mark the first weekend the UK host a large-scale festival for the very first time since summer 2019.

A wide range of artists and their fans will travel to Donington Park - just outside East Midlands Airport - for the Download Festival Pilot event. Despite only one ticket allowed to be purchased per person, per transaction, tickets for the Download Festival event, sold out.

Although thousands of fans have been attending sporting events and theatres recently, Download Festival is set to be different as there will be no restrictions in place. Not only are more than ten thousand people estimated to attend, but social distancing and face coverings are discouraged. The only precautions are the necessity to provide a negative test before being granted access.

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Ultimately, this means that the crowd surfing, moshing and togetherness that is expected at a rock festival is tolerated for one weekend. As though Covid-19 doesn't and never has existed.

As this is the first large scale festival in over a year, gig-goers and the music industry will wait in anticipation of news of its success. Afterall, the arts have been one of the industries to be affected the most as a result of the pandemic.

With Leeds Festival still scheduled to go ahead, this weekend will have a huge say on whether it is goes ahead as according to planned.

August bank holiday weekend is set to see over 75 thousand people plan to travel to Bramham Park in West Yorkshire, where they will camp and spend the weekend listening to live music surrounded by many others. Though some people still have doubts over whether the event will go ahead.

Some events have already taken place in Yorkshire and around the country, with thousands of fans attending sporting events including Sheffield United and Leeds United’s final home Premier League games of the seasons.

The trial events have been a huge success with trying to bring a sense of normality back to the country and success at Download Festival will be another huge step in the correct direction. If it goes ahead, the three-day weekend is set to host headliners including Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, Enter Shikari and Bullet for my Valentine.

It's a waiting game as the Prime Minister announced on Monday that 'Freedom Day' has been delayed for a further four weeks, until July 19. The restrictions are far from over.