Friday 20 September 2019

Sir Richard Branson says 2017 was Virgin’s last V Festival

V Festival was launched in 1996.

By Julia Hunt, Press Association

Sir Richard Branson has announced that Virgin will no longer be sponsoring V Festival.

The billionaire businessman said the 2017 event was Virgin’s last, after 22 “enjoyable and successful years”.

However, the festival will continue, with another company expected to take Virgin’s role.

Sir Richard said in a statement on the Virgin website: “V Festival has always been a special weekend for everyone at Virgin.

“We’ve been proud to sponsor V Festival for the past two decades and there have been some incredible performances on the stage.

“Now, after 22 very enjoyable and successful years, 2017 was Virgin’s last V Festival.

“Being part of V Festival has been an honour and there are some amazing moments that will stay with me forever – including introducing Paul Weller and welcoming V2 Records’ first signing The Stereophonics to a massive audience.

“Working on V Festival has been a brilliant journey filled with great people, fun times and exceptional music.”

Sir Richard said he had great experiences at the festival, which is held annually in August at two venues – Hylands Park in Chelmsford and Weston Park in south Staffordshire.

“I have so many memories to cherish – from the mind-blowing performances to spending quality time at the festival with both Holly and Sam, who it’s no surprise are both music lovers after spending so much time dancing at V,” he said.

“Looking back on the wonderful history of V Festival has reminded me just how far Virgin has come. Who would have thought that an idea to sell cut-price mail-order records would grow into a record label, let alone a unique music festival – and so much else besides?” he said.

“We wish Live Nation every success with their future plans. We would like to thank them for a brilliant partnership over recent years.”

Sir Richard said it was now time for Virgin to “look at new ways we can disrupt the industry to ensure music is a force for good”.

A message posted on the festival’s Twitter page said the event would carry on during the usual weekend in August, with a new name.

The tweet said: “Thanks for being a great sponsor @Virgin.

“The name of the new festival that continues on the same weekend in 2018 will be announced soon.”

V Festival was launched in 1996 and has featured some of the world’s biggest stars, including Justin Bieber, Rihanna and Jay Z.

PA Media

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