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Independent status debate for Congress

22 October 2019

AMONG ISSUES to be debated at the annual Festival Congress, organised by the Association of Independent Festivals (AIF), is what being independent means in the current climate of event takeovers and consolidations.

Other topics will include a vision for a sustainable industry, festival funding, apps and the ethics of data collection, cashless technology managing volunteers.

Speakers includes Rob da Bank, DJ and co-founder/head of Bestival and Camp Bestival, until the companies behind them went into administration in late 2018, with debts of nearly £6 million (see LIVE UK issue 226). Also speaking will be Bert Cole of performance collective Arcadia.

“Following an exciting inaugural year in Sheffield, Festival Congress has firmly settled into its new home and is back with our most ambitious and varied programme to date,” says AIF CEO Paul Reed. “We’ll be debating the key issues currently facing the independent festival sector and, as ever, looking outside of the industry for inspiration.”

The sixth annual event, which also features an awards ceremony, is taking place at Sheffield’s Abbeydale Picturehouse on 6-7 November, with around 350 delegates expected to attend.

Conference registration costs £100 for AIF members, £135 for Friends of AIF and £185 for delegates from non-member organisations, available via headline event sponsor Eventbrite.

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