It is with a heavy heart that we deliver the news that this years Stockton Weekender, which saw the likes of Public Enemy and Happy Mondays perform on the Riverside, was the last.
But we (Tees Music Alliance) are already working with Stockton Council and other partners to explore alternatives. The annual event, held on Stockton Riverside for the last four years, has seen the likes of Primal Scream, Seasick Steve, James, The Pogues, Maximo Park, Jake Bugg, Kodaline, Django Django and more perform.
We’ve given Stockton Weekender our all and it’s given us some fantastic experiences in return. We’ve had some world-famous names but it has also helped to develop local bands like Young Rebel Set and Cattle & Cane, giving them great exposure while their careers took off.
Though ticket sales have been lower than expected, more than 50,000 people have attended it during that time.
But it’s not just about ticket sales – the sheer scale of the event means that just making it happen is always a challenge in itself. We’re working in an environment of seemingly runaway costs - especially for headline artists, who tend to look towards the live circuit to recoup money they no longer get from record sales. For the foreseeable future, costs are going to continue to increase and getting the right acts in place will become harder and harder; which has been the key driver behind our sad decision to call it a day on the festival.
We move on with no regrets and our heartfelt thanks go to everyone who has supported us, particularly our wonderful staff and volunteers who made running the event possible – and the ticket buying public who put their faith in the festival.
We’re as committed as we’ve ever been to growing Teesside’s music scene and we’re really excited about 2015 with a really great programme in our venues the Georgian Theatre and the Green Room – alongside events such as Stockton Calling, which we organise with ARC and KU.
We'd like to say a huge thank you to each and every performer who has played over the last four years, and to all of you who attended and helped make some of the most wonderful memories, ones that we'll cherish always, and we hope you will too.