Ampthill Festival - including AmpRocks with James Bay - cancelled

Soaring costs are blamed

By Clare Turner
Monday, 25th April 2022, 1:57 pm
Updated Monday, 25th April 2022, 2:34 pm

The popular Ampthill Festival – which included Amplify, AmpRocks and AmpProms – has been forced to cancel.

Spiraling costs have been blamed but AmpGala and AmpLiterary will still go ahead as planned as organisers vow to return to the event’s roots.

After a two-year break due to Covid, BRIT award-winning James Bay was due to play AmpRocks, while Grammy award-winning DJ David Morales was due to feature at Amplify.

James Bay was due to play AmpRocks in July

In a statement on Ampthill Festival’s website organisers said: “It is with great sadness that we have taken the decision to cancel Amplify, AmpRocks and AmpProms this year.

"This decision has not been taken lightly as we believe in the power of bringing the community together and have been intensely proud of the events provided over more than a decade.

“However, costs have again soared this year, with some elements more than doubling in price.

"Understanding the impact of the cost-of-living crisis, we kept our costs in line with the last three years, with a small cushion provided by Arts Council funding won in 2020.

"But we needed our wider community to come out to support the festival by buying tickets and sadly, this has not happened fast enough for us to be in a good position to pay artists and local suppliers.”

The statement went on to say: “Effectively by choosing to continue, we would have been gambling with our neighbours’ ticket value, the investment of our sponsors, and the income of local suppliers. This just did not sit well with us at all.”

Music lovers took to Facebook in response to the news.

One said: “What a shame. We went every year and loved the whole weekend. Was really looking forward to this year.”

Another said: “Absolutely gutting news but most gutted for the incredible group of volunteers who spend hours and hours of their spare time planning, organising and running this.”

While another added: “I don’t think it comes as a surprise. The festival had lost its identity. Going back to its roots with less stages, less pomp, smaller crowds, less restrictions is a good call.”

Ticket holders will be fully refunded within the next two weeks via Eventbrite.