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Blow for revellers as plug is pulled on Electric Picnic 2020

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The Electric Picnic festival in Stradbally, County Laois has been cancelled due to the crisis (Niall Carson/PA)

The Electric Picnic festival in Stradbally, County Laois has been cancelled due to the crisis (Niall Carson/PA)

PA

The Electric Picnic festival in Stradbally, County Laois has been cancelled due to the crisis (Niall Carson/PA)

The 2020 Electric Picnic festival has been cancelled, organisers have confirmed.

The festival, which attracts 60,000 revellers each year to Stradbally in Co Laois, is the latest mass gathering to be cancelled due to virus fears.

It was due to take place on September 4-6 - with headline acts including Lewis Capaldi, Snow Patrol and Rage Against the Machine - and is one of the most popular Irish festivals, attracting people from all over Europe.

In a statement issued yesterday, organisers said cancelling had become "unavoidable".

"Whilst the entire Electric Picnic team is terribly disappointed, we have a responsibility to all our fans, artists, crews, suppliers, sponsors, partners and our entire Electric Picnic family, including the wonderful people of Stradbally who have welcomed us into their community each year," the statement said.

Organisers thanked the fans and said 2021 will bring "lots more fun".

"We would like to thank each and every one of them for their fantastic support and outstanding contribution towards making the festival such an amazing event and look forward to welcoming everyone back in 2021 for lots more fun, music, extravagance and magical moments."

Ticket holders can seek a refund from Ticketmaster or hold on to their tickets for next year's festival.

"For more information on this please email enquiries@festivalrepublic.com and we will do all we can to assist."

The statement also encouraged support for the emergency services.

"Finally, we encourage everyone to continue supporting our emergency services, who provide invaluable support and assistance at all our events, and we again express our gratitude, admiration and thanks for their dedication and professionalism which is proving so vital at this time.

"For now, keep safe, keep healthy and look after each other."

Thousands of tickets for the festival sold out in minutes when they went on sale last September.

It is the latest hit for revellers this summer after most other scheduled festivals have been cancelled, including Life, All Together Now, and Longitude.

Some of the cancellations came after it emerged that mass gatherings of more than 5,000 people would be banned until at least the end of August.

While it is outside of the time-frame, the festival joins the National Ploughing Championships, also due to take place in September, in not going ahead.

Irish Independent