Sources at Punchestown say they are not greatly surprised by the cancellation of this summer’s Oxegen Festival and that it will not have a great impact on their operations.
Speaking to the Leinster Leader, Sales and Marketing Director Liam Holton said that the news did not come as a major surprise, especially given the festival’s cancellation in 2012 and the reduced size of the event last year.
“We’ll be having over 200 events in Punchestown this year, including our own Festival shortly, so the importance of Oxegen to us has been diluted.
“It’s not on the scale or significance it used to be,” he added. “It didn’t come as a major surprise.
“We’re far more focused on our own [National Hunt] Festival which starts in eight days time (at the time of writing, yesterday, Monday, April 21).”
In promotor MCD’s statement announcing the cancellation of the festival, they referenced a “lack of suitable headline acts... combined with the financial demands by local agencies make it no longer viable”.
However, Mr. Holton was very clear in assessment of the local agencies in Kildare.
“The record would show that Kildare has a great track record in attracting large events and is recognised nationally as such”.
This sentiment was emphasised by Allan Shine of North Kildare Chamber of Commerce who noted that he totally disagreed with the comments of MCD.
“Kildare County Council knows how to run a festival and is well able to adapt year on year to the demands of a variety of different events.”
Mr. Shine said he believed the main reason for the cancellation was the success of the Electric Picnic, and the emergence of Marley Park as a venue.