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  • Oliver Hodgson

Cumbria’s First Socially Distanced Festival Is Announced for August Bank Holiday 

Organisers Thomas Smith, Evie Plumb & Emmie Coxey

Westmorland County Showground and The Innova Collective are collaborating to bring a weekend of incredible live music shows to the South Lakes this August 28th, 29th and 30th.

The one-off ticketed event has been set up to raise money for the mental health charity, Mind, as well as local food banks, whilst providing a fun and safe environment. The pandemic has had a huge effect on the nation’s mental health, and on food poverty too, so the organisers thought these two causes were incredibly deserving of some help. 

Thomas Smith of The Innova Collective is heading up logistics and operations for the festival, he said: “The lockdown has affected us all in so many different ways, but mental health is somewhat of common ground - everyone has either suffered themselves or has been effected through a close friend or family member. 

“This event is about bouncing back, positivity, hope, and resilience and we are sure the wonderful Cumbrian community will show it some support.”

The locally-based event organisers have been wracking their brains to seek alternatives that can bring everyone together to create great experiences, whilst observing the government’s guidelines. The result of the team’s brain-wracking is a three-day live music festival featuring highly acclaimed and much-loved artists who are sure to make it a memorable, sell-out event. 

The team behind this event want to go the extra mile in ensuring Summer 2020 is not a write-off, and so have created simple but effective systems, specifically designed for the site, to ensure confidence in customers and most importantly, the safety of all involved. Three nights of brilliant acts from across the country are programmed to play at Westmorland County Showground, where there will also be pre-order food service and a bar delivery service all via an app! All involved have said they are going above and beyond to ensure all aspects of the event are safe in these exceptional circumstances. 

Using a new system of ‘islands’, guests will be able to party within their bubble in designated personal areas, giving attendees their own space to move and relax, while watching the fantastic live music in the open air alongside hundreds of others.

Guests are welcome to bring their own chairs and picnic rugs to chill out on and enjoy the great food and drinks on offer from within the event. This island concept is being rolled out at other live music events in Newcastle, Manchester and London, and now at the South Lakes’ very own event on August bank holiday weekend.

Organisers say the idea behind the name ‘Social 2.0’ is that they wanted to recognise that we can still come together and have a brilliant social experience, whilst maintaining that safe physical distance of two metres between one another. 

With a complete wipe-out of all planned events for the next few months, the two teams and all their staff were looking into a very bleak future, but as Tom Smith says, ‘events are in our blood; where there is a will, there is a way’.

Tom added: “The power of live music to bring people together for a shared experience is unbeatable, and it would be such a shame to see the summer pass us by without such a united moment of joy and euphoria for us all to remember!”

The festival's exact programme is to be announced in the coming fortnight, and tickets are set to sell out very quickly for the most popular nights. Tickets will be purchased per space, with room for up to six people per ‘island’.

So, watch out for announcements coming soon about this exciting, new festival set for this August Bank Holiday. 

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