Guildford has high hopes for new music festival

Olly Murs
Image caption Olly Murs was among headline acts at Guilfest in 2012, but the festival was hit by bad weather

Two companies have expressed an interest in running a music festival in Surrey in 2013 after the company which ran Guilfest went into liquidation.

Guildford Borough Council said it wanted a family-style festival next summer similar to Guilfest, which had been running for 21 years.

Scotty Events, which ran Guilfest, went into liquidation in September, blaming poor ticket sales in 2012.

Councillor Jen Powell said she was optimistic a festival would be held.

Jools Holland, Olly Murs and Bryan Ferry were among headline acts at the three-day festival at Stoke Park in Guildford this summer.

'Intense competition'

About 20,000 people were expected each day but Scotty Events, run by Tony Scott, was left with debts of about £300,000.

The company said the festival had faced the worst weather conditions in its history, which turned the park into a quagmire.

It said there was also intense competition from other events including the Olympics, Farnborough Air Show, Tom Jones at Sandown Park and Bruce Springsteen in London near the Guilfest weekend of 13-15 July.

Ms Powell, lead councillor for sport, culture and leisure, said hopes for a festival were "an eight" on a scale of one to 10.

"It is so sad that Tony Scott's company went into liquidation but we would like a festival this coming year," she said.

"We have had expressions of interest but we would like to keep it as a one-off festival if possible because it would perhaps give a chance for Tony Scott's group to rise from the ashes.

"My colleagues on the council do want a festival next year. They are aware how much it was enjoyed."

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