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This summer will see the millionth music fan attending a live gig in a spectacular woodland location as part of the Forestry Commission’s concert series. Ticket sales recently passed the million mark for this popular series of outdoor events which take place annually in seven forests throughout England each June and July.
Forestry Commission Live Music has been running since 2001 when Jools Holland and The Levellers first played across four sites with a sales capacity of 40,000. Due to its success the programme soon expanded and now regularly sells in excess of 110,000 tickets each year.
It is an independent programme bringing music to new audiences without commercial branding or sponsorship. To date the series has hosted over 50 headline acts including Paul Weller, Pulp, James Morrison, Simply Red, Keane and Madness plus many support artists who have gone on to be very successful in their own right.
Income generated from Forestry Commission Live Music ticket sales is spent on improving the local forest in a variety of ways for both people and wildlife.
Rachael Miller, Forestry Commission Events Manager, said,
"We're so pleased and proud to have reached a million customers in our Live Music programme. I know from personal experience that its amazing to see a favourite artist perform in such unique locations. Support for and interest in the programme has grown steadily over the years. Research has shown us that first time forest concert-goers are likely to visit the forest again on future occasions to enjoy walking, mountain biking or other activities. We hope that the Live Music programme helps a whole new audience discover what fantastic places forests are."
"While some acts attract a regional audience keen to experience a favourite artist's performance in their local woodland, some artists have such loyal fans that concert-goers are willing to travel great distances to see the artist perform in one or more forest venues. This has a beneficial effect on tourism based businesses in the region, and demonstrates the positive effects of the live music programme extend beyond the forest."
Our fastest selling acts comprise JLS, The Courteeners and most recently Ed Sheeran, who is due to play at Thetford Forest this July.
This year, amongst a stellar line up of artists, sees Plan B and Will Young touring all seven forest venues. To find out more about our Live Music programme, buy tickets and subscribe for news of the latest artists as they are announced go to www.forestry.gov.uk/music or find us on Facebook and Twitter.
Note to Editors:
- The Live Music programme is self-sustaining, and provides valuable revenue to plough back into our management of woodlands in a variety of social and environmental projects. In recent years examples include work on habitat creation for endangered butterfly species; health projects to encourage young and old alike to get out and about in the natural environment.
- 18% of the country's woods and forests are managed by the Forestry Commission. In England, more than 50% of the population live within 10km of a Forestry Commission managed wood or forest.
- Full details of the 2012 line-up have recently been announced: Plan B, Will Young, Ed Sheeran, Alfie Boe & Orchestra, Madness, The Wanted, Steps, Razorlight, The Darkness, The Wombats. For full details see www.forestry.gov.uk/music
- Forest concerts take place at Thetford Forest (Suffolk), Delamere Forest (Cheshire), Bedgebury Pinetum (Kent), Sherwood Pines Forest (Notts) Cannock Chase Forest (Staffs) Dalby Forest (N. Yorks) and Westonbirt Arboretum (Glos).
- For more details on the history of the Live Music programme see http://www.forestry.gov.uk/forestry/INFD-7LPFDN
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