East of England Showground, Peterborough, Cambs.
CRF20 is CONFIRMED, and moving to PETERBOROUGH on 18th-21st June
Thanks to everyone for their continued support of the CRF over the past 15 years - we are very pleased to be able to announce that the Cambridge Rock Festival will go ahead next year on June 18th-21st at a new location just outside Peterborough and this change of side has led to the delayed announcement. We would like to give our regular supporters some insight into this change, which we think will help make our great festival even better for all of you and also easier for us to run!
CRF20 will be moving up the road to the “East of England Arena and Events Centre”, also known as the East of England Showground, Peterborough, which, like all previous CRF sites, is still in Cambridgeshire! The site itself is large and multi-faceted; we will be using the Pavillion and some other areas within the Showground. It has very easy access, being right by junction 17 of the A1/A1(M). The intention is continue with three stages, with broadly the same blend of classic rock, blues, progressive and acoustic music, with a few other genres thrown in!
Why are we changing location again?
Fundamentally, there are two reasons. Firstly, we believe it will give you an even better experience! We plan to have one main stage housing most of the bigger names in a permanent structure, which will allow us to provide some tiered seating for those that want or need it. There will be a second stage for other bands and third stage for acoustic bands, with some new bands being ‘tried out’ on those two stages. We will still run our own real-ale bar, and in addition to trader food there’s also an on-site restaurant. We’ll still have an outside seating area.
Whilst camping will still be on grass, the new site has hard standing, with water and power already there and there’s a permanent toilet and shower block. As not everyone likes camping, there’s several hotels around the Showground site and this should help us attract newcomers to the CRF. Peterborough has excellent rail and bus links and we believe fans will find it easier to get cheaper accommodation in the area than they did around Cambridge city, should they wish to. The whole site is far more resilient against bad weather and although that has never stopped the festival, it has sometimes taken a Herculean effort by our volunteers to keep everything going, and we’re very aware of the problems excessive rain can cause to the camp site and parking.
Long term future
The second reason is viability – the CRF doesn’t get backing from any Councils, Government grants etc (and there are plenty that do!) and doesn’t have the advantage of backing from major industry artists or publications – it’s organised throughout the year by volunteers and much of the event itself is run by volunteers. Whilst many other festivals have come and gone because they don’t make loads of money and/or the organisers can’t keep doing the work, we’ve kept the CRF going through thick and thin and in recent years have just about broken even each year.
But that puts a lot of pressure on everyone; to the point that we’re worrying about it rather than concentrating on making it happen in the best way possible (and enjoying it ourselves as much as you, our loyal supporters!). The new site will reduce our workload! None of us are getting any younger and as well as the 4 days of the festival and many months of planning, in recent years there’s two weeks of building and removing our complex temporary site, also done by many volunteers.
Change of date
As for the change of date, this year we have been restricted to what was available and the chosen date minimises clashes with other events that some fans have had to choose between.
See you at CRF!
We hope you understand our thinking, and please appreciate that we haven’t taken this decision lightly. We, like you, will always look back on our years at earlier venues with fondness and a feeling of great pleasure at all we’ve ALL achieved, but dates and venues have changed before and we really hope that you’ll agree the huge benefits of this site should help us secure the CRF for the future.
See you there!
Dave and the CRF Steering Group.