The sun has set on Nottingham’s Summer Party for the last time. The Students’ Union has decided to axe the one day festival, which was once described as the “Student Glastonbury” by Radio One and attracted up to 8,000 students. Big names that have graced The Downs over the past couple of years include Example in 2011 and Labrinth last year.
Figures obtained by Impact this evening (23rd January) show that the event lost the Union £157,000 over three years. Although the event lost less money after it was taken out of students’ hands in 2011 and run with help from Carpe Noctum, it still lost £44,000 in June of that year and just over £40,000 in 2012.
According to minutes from a meeting in July, SU Trustees had previously been promised that the Union would only lose £17,000 last year in the worst case scenario.
In an official statement, the Union said: “The Students’ Union Summer Party has run at a significant loss over the past three years, despite being enjoyed by those who attended, and having a great deal of student involvement from our Media groups and TEC.
“It is with regret that the Officers, Trustees and Staff of the Union are unable to sanction another event without first taking the time to understand the demands of our students, and the pressures on such an event from the current financial climate and other events scheduled for the same time,” the Union continued to comment.
There will be no replacement for Summer Party in 2013 because the Union says it would take too long to research and organise. This makes 2013 the first year since 1994 that a large summer event for all students is not being planned. In 1999, the event was cancelled after Steps pulled out.
Instead, students have been promised a summer event for 2014, as a part of the Union’s Centenary celebrations: “Your officers, with the support of staff, will be consulting with students, student groups, clubs and societies, together with key stakeholders such as the University, in order to plan and deliver an event which meets the needs of the students at Nottingham. Your input will be vital in this planning and delivery.”
Democracy and Communications Officer Luke Mitchell told Impact he was sad to see Summer Party shut down: “I’m gutted that we can’t run Summer Party this year – I loved it!”
“But given that it was losing so much money, I hope you’ll understand why the decision was made.”
On an optimistic note, Luke said: “I think we’ll put on a great event in 2014 once we’ve got some really good feedback from students.”
Impact’s music editor Ben James said: “You couldn’t pay me to see their line up. But that’s only my opinion. Even if everyone enjoyed it, they couldn’t justify the cost. A festival has to make a little money and entertain its audience. Summer Party did neither.”
Should Summer Party have been shelved? What do you want it to be replaced by?