Oxford

Common People Festival goes into administration

James, Lily Allen and Ride
Image caption Last year's events included headliners James, Lily Allen, and Ride

The company behind large summer pop festivals in Southampton and Oxford has gone into administration.

Common People Festival Ltd has debts of more than £500,000, according to a statement posted with Companies House by liquidators.

Last year's events, organised by DJ Rob da Bank, featured The Jacksons, James, Ride, Boney M, and Lily Allen.

Creditors listed include several event suppliers and contractors. The BBC has approached Common People for comment.

The festivals took place at Southampton Common and in Oxford's South Park.

Rob da Bank also started Bestival on the Isle of Wight and Camp Bestival in Dorset.

Bestival was forced into administration in September, with acts such as London Grammar, Plan B, First Aid Kit and The Streets left awaiting payment.

Image caption Common People was organised by Rob da Bank

Mary Clarkson, executive board member for culture at Oxford City Council, said she was "absolutely gutted" that Common People would not be returning to the city.

She added: "The city council is committed to bringing another annual festival that celebrates Oxford's culture and diverse communities to South Park as soon as possible, and we're in discussions with other festival organisers about this."

Ronan Munro, editor of Oxford's Nightshift music magazine and curator of one of Common People's local music stages, confirmed he was owed money from the organisers.

He called the end of the festival "a real shame".

He said: "It was perfect for Oxford... but last year in particular the main stage line-ups didn't get enough people excited.

"It's always hard for smaller festivals to get the acts they want in such a saturated festival market and with the biggest events hoovering up the top acts and signing them on exclusive deals.

"It was also a victim of Bestival and Camp Bestival's problems; the whole organisation seemed to have a nightmare year last year."

Bestival has since been taken over by Live Nation.

Camp Bestival will still take place in 2019, at Lulworth Castle, Dorset, featuring headliners Jess Glynne and The Human League.

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