Eco-conscious WOW Fest encourages a trend for Festival Tourism on the Isle of Wight.
Organisers are pleased to announce that ‘WOW Fest’ was granted a Premises License, after a long hearing on Thursday this week, to run an annual global party in fields just outside Shanklin.
WOW Fest will take place on the Isle of Wight 17th-19th August 2012
WOW Fest genuinely wishes for this to be a new opportunity for the south of the Isle of Wight. Let’s face it – for most of the year many of the island’s small businesses, from hotel to high street or corner shop, struggle to survive and pin their hopes on the “Easter holiday” and the “tourist season” in August. However, with some clear exceptions including Cowes week, the trend for August appears more one of delusion than solid fact this year. Ask any shop in Ventnor, Newport or Sandown what they think of trading in this year’s August tourist season and you will more often than not get the response, ‘this has been the worst year yet’ or ‘September is often better for us’.
We all need to take a look at doing something to change the pattern of decline emerging, whether it be attributable to the recession or to other factors. Many people still do come and have a ‘great time’ but none of them seem to bring in significant extra spend in August to a vast section of the local economy. So enter into the market all sorts of independent ideas from Chilli Farms to Chocolate Factory to WOW Fest.
It has been happening since 2000 but the revival of the now famous musical heritage of the Isle of Wight is established – founded on a craziness of spirit, which many residents railed against at the time and would care to forget, yet which was immense in capturing the soul of an era that is quite unrepeatable with modern legislation and health & safety regulations. The association of music, festivals and the Isle of Wight is one that will not go away and one that has already helped grow two major festivals in the last decade, operating in conditions of cost and legality that are only for the courageous and creative.
So enter into the market a festival that is of its time, WOW Fest a Global Party, sharing culture through music, dance and entertainment in an atmosphere of fun, happiness and eco-consciousness. It is to be in August and has a license granted for 3 years.
At another junction of history, amidst the changing spirit and soul of an emerging era, WOW Fest takes the festival scene of the Isle of Wight into a place that the others have successfully and bravely been heading – the market sector of Festival Tourism, with ecologically sensitive values and it adds a global dimension. The message of WOW Fest is quite clearly, ‘Stay longer, spread your travel times, come by bike if you like, put your rubbish in the bins provided, love the music of the world, take a look at the rest of the island and spend money on what it has to offer whilst you are here but central to your holiday is the global journey to WOW Fest for those who want to relax and have fun and Global Party’.
Founded on a Sustainability Policy, which was based on a 40 page Sustainability Report researched and written by highly regarded sustainability consultants, WOW Fest aims high in terms of green festivals and feeds into the Eco-Island initiative with objectives that are entirely consistent with the values of the Eco-Island Partnership.
WOW Fest travel partners all bring opportunity for global party goers to travel to WOW on the island without a car. WOW Fest encourages longer stays, to take in more of what the island has to offer during the holiday season. WOW Fest also hopes that those staying around the area will take advantage of the WOW Day Tickets.
“This is Festival Tourism and we believe the island’s tourist market needs new and fresh reasons for a wider variety of visitors to choose the Isle of Wight in August from among the zillions of other holiday choices they could otherwise make”.
With the support of Southern Vectis, free island bus travel is included within the WOW Fest ticket prices, the link from Hovertravel and Red Funnel ports of entry can be made without a car, and in support and consultation with Sustrans WOW Fest is able to encourage Cycling to WOW. WOW Fest is considerably eco-conscious and user friendly.
“It is entirely possible to Cycle to WOW Fest on designated Island Cycle routes and we positively encourage this”.
As well as initiatives on waste and water, this festival aims to be totally solar powered when the equipment becomes more readily available over the next five years. WOW Fest also aims to give back via charities, like SolarAid and Building Schools for Africa that help in parts of the world from whence WOW Fest derives artistic inspiration.
WOW Fest has been in planning for nearly two years and has a large team of festival and industry related people behind the scenes to create the whole experience and atmosphere.
Supporting local farmers and hoping that the businesses of Shanklin, Ventnor and South will benefit particularly, WOW Fest provides another great reason to holiday on the Isle of Wight next August and to linger for longer to take in other aspects of the Island’s economy.
The full website launches in November with full ticket sales capacity and live information but anticipate announcements on the line up in about four weeks time.
More details on www.wowfest.co.uk website launching October 2011.
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