by Adam Aiken
The plug has been pulled on the inaugural Wide Skies & Butterflies festival, which had been due to take place on the Raynham Estate, near Fakenham, next month.
The organisers said there had been a combination of factors that had conspired against the festival, including disappointing ticket sales and the aftermath of the covid pandemic.
An eclectic line-up had been planned over the weekend of August 5-7, with sets from the likes of James, The Vaccines, Cast, Editors, Natalie Imbruglia, Hot Chips and Levellers.
But in a statement, the organisers said: “It is with deep regret that we announce that Wide Skies & Butterflies will no longer be able to go ahead.
“Despite the anticipation of a summer free of restrictions, 2022 is proving an incredibly challenging year for live music and events. The industry has seen an unprecedented rise in the costs of production alongside lower than expected ticket sales due to rising costs of living.
“For a festival in its first year, the combination of these obstacles, as well as a key investment failing to come through, has made it impossible for us to go ahead.
“We would like to thank everyone for their support, including all the artists, our partners, suppliers and local businesses, and in particular the Raynham Estate for giving us this opportunity. We are sad not to have been able to go ahead in such a fantastic location.”
It’s unclear whether there’ll be an attempt next year to hold the event, but the company behind it is no longer trading.
The statement added: “SMS Event Production Ltd has ceased to trade and everyone, including all ticket holders, will be contacted directly in due course.
“As the vast majority of your ticket purchases sit with us, we are working with ticketing agents to ensure we can facilitate your refund and process them in a timely fashion.
“Please bear with us as we prepare further communications on the next steps.”