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Festival Awards' winners

Glastonbury, Bestival, Blur and Kings of Leon honoured at UK bash

  • 20/11/2009
  • Georgie Rogers
Blur onstage at Glastonbury 2009

Blur's Glastonbury performance has been hailed the Best Headline Performance of the year at the 6th annual UK Festival Awards which took place at London’s 02 Arena last night (19 Nov).

It was their first appearance at the festival, which was crowned Best Major Festival, since 1998 with frontman Damon Albarn also scooping the Festival Fitty Award.

As well as the major players, Cornwall's Beach Break Live - the UK’s only student festival - picked up two awards for Promoter of the Year and Best Small Festival.

Best Medium Festival went to Bestival on the Isle of Wight, which bagged the only UK festival performance from Kraftwerk.

Rob Da Bank, who is behind events Bestival and Camp Bestival, said it wasn't so bad for them this year after a very wet year in 2008: "That was disastrous financially and for morale and stuff, so I knew it was going to be a tough year, but I spent six months booking really strong line-ups and I think that got us through it.

"We’ve got a loyal fanbase, we don’t rely on headliners but I said to everyone in the team, 'We need a really strong line-up to get us through this'."

As for next year’s plans, Rob Da Bank told 6 Music News how they plan to tackle the tough economic climate: "Again I’m going for an incredible line-up to make sure people keep coming back to our festivals."

Glastonbury 2009

He also revealed he has The Fall lined-up for Camp Bestival.

"It’s not a headliner, but it’s just one of the early acts that I’ve booked," he explained. "In fact I’m not sure I have announced that so that’s a 6 Music little exclusive, it’s definitely a 6 Music band, which I absolutely love."

The Lifetime Achievement award went to Katrina Larkin, who is behind The Big Chill festival in Herefordshire.

She told 6 Music she was delighted to get recognised for being creative: "That’s what The Big Chill has always been about since day one when Pete Lawrence and I started it.

"It’s been about an open door for artists who are established or non-established to basically throw away the rule book and explore, do new things, play the music they really want to play and just have a good time."

Earlier in the day, a conference took place considering the future of festivals in the UK in the current economic climate.

Katrina Larkin imparted some words of wisdom for newcomers, who are finding it hard to compete now the number of festivals has expanded so rapidly.

"In some ways it’s really good and really healthy that festivals have become a recognised part of British culture. There are more people than ever going to British festivals and it’s not just young people going to festivals but I think if festivals are starting, the secret is to start small," she said.

See below for the UK Festival Winners:

Best Family Festival: Camp Bestival
Best Toilets: T in the Park
The Greener Festival Award: Croissant Neuf Summer Party
Best Metropolitan Festival: Gaymers Camden
Festival Fitty Award: Damon Albarn (boys), Lily Allen (girls)
Best New Festival: Sonisphere
The Grass Roots Festival Award: Leefest
Virtual Festivals’ Critics Choice Award: La Casa Azul
Best Brand Activation Award: The Schuh Welly
Best Breakthrough Act: Florence & The Machine
Best Overseas Festival: Oxegen (Ireland)
Anthem of the Summer: Kings of Leon, Sex On Fire
Best Headline Performance: Blur @ Glastonbury
Best Dance Event: Creamfields
Promoter of the Year: Beach Break Live
Best Line-Up: Lounge on the Farm
Best Small Festival: Beach Break Live
Best Medium Festival: Bestival
Best Major Festival: Glastonbury
Lifetime Achievement Award: Katrina Larkin

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