WOMEN’S TRAD FESTIVAL 2020 CANCELLED - AN OPEN LETTER FROM THE ORGANISERS
It is with very heavy hearts that we announce the cancellation of the fifth Women’s Trad Festival 2020. This comes as a result of a number of significant obstacles faced in the past two weeks. COVID-19 has played a part in our decision, however, the main determinant is that due to changes in our insurance terms, we felt we were not able to run an event that remains true to our aims and core values this year.
As organisers, this is not a decision we have taken lightly. Each year we strive to make the festival better than the previous year, with work for this year’s festival starting in August 2019. After months of hard work and planning, we were looking forward to unveiling a whole host of exciting new additions for 2020 to our community.
Our reasons for cancelling are as follows:
Days before the 2020 ballot was due to open, some changes were made to the terms of our insurance that rendered it not possible to continue the event in its present format. We chose to make the difficult decision to seek alternative insurance knowing this would be a challenge given the short amount of time available. The bespoke and complicated nature of the festival and the importance we place on community also compounded this.
Significant changes to the festival structure would need to have been undertaken, however in the short timeframe available this was sadly not possible. Secondary to this, the escalation of COVID-19 has put additional uncertainty on the event with insurance providers unable to provide cancellation cover on these grounds. As a small grassroots organisation run by four individuals, we do not yet have the resources to refund tickets in the event of a COVID-19 related cancellation - and to not refund participants felt entirely against our aim of making climbing accessible to all. We also face the challenge that facilities for an off grid event of this nature needed to be organised months in advance, with considerable outlay.
We understand more than anyone the disappointment this announcement will cause and would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to our sponsors, suppliers and supporters. As a community your unwavering enthusiasm and energy will continue to inspire us during this difficult time and we will be back for WTF2021. The fifth year will be delayed but more wonderful and glorious than ever!
Charlie, Ellie, Gilly & Hetty