Tayside and Central Scotland

T in the Park 'not looking likely' for 2018

TITP crowd Image copyright Andrew Milligan/PA
Image caption T in the Park was not held this year

T in the Park organiser Geoff Ellis has said it is "not looking likely" the music festival will take place in 2018.

However, Mr Ellis told BBC Scotland no decision about the long-term future of the event had been taken.

He said T in the Park could return as an "evolved" festival for over-18s that was more focused on rock bands than electronic dance music (EDM).

T in the Park took a break this year following difficulties at the new site in Strathallan.

It is organised by DF Concerts who also held the TRNSMT festival in Glasgow last weekend.

The company has already announced that TRNSMT - a non-camping festival held on Glasgow Green - would return for a second year.

About 120,000 music fans went to the inaugural festival, with Radiohead, Kasabian and Biffy Clyro headlining. Other acts performing included The Kooks, Belle and Sebastian, London Grammar and Twin Atlantic.

Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland's Kaye Adams programme, Mr Ellis said the atmosphere at TRNSMT had been "incredible" and praised the "fantastic" audience.

The history of T in the Park

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption T in the Park moved from Balado after 2014

Scotland's largest music festival had been held every year since 1994, when Rage Against the Machine and Primal Scream were the headline acts.

The first three years took place at Strathclyde Park, near Hamilton in Lanarkshire, before it moved to Balado in Perth and Kinross.

Over 17 years it grew to a three-day festival attracting 225,000 people, including 70,000 campers.

In 2015 the festival moved to Strathallan Castle in Perthshire.

The move was prompted after "substantial" concerns were raised by health and safety inspectors about an oil pipeline which ran underneath the Balado site.

Planning permission for the July 2015 event was only approved two months before the festival, following public consultations on the move and concerns over a pair of nesting ospreys at the site.

The 2015 event drew the largest number of complaints and negative comments in the festival's history, with "significant traffic congestion" highlighted.

He said he was not ready to make any firm announcements about T in the Park, but added that a 2018 festival was "not looking likely".

"We've not formulated any decisions on the future of T in the Park - it's still too early.

"We want to focus on TRNSMT, the Glasgow Summer Sessions and all the other concerts we've got. As soon as we are ready to make decisions and let people know about the future, we'll tell people," he said.

"The planning constraints are just so complex and costly at Strathallan that we're just not in a position to say yes we'll continue."

The festival's first year at Strathallan in 2015 was plagued by traffic problems, leading to organisers implementing a transport plan for the following year.

There were also planning issues surrounding a pair of nesting ospreys at the site.

Older audience

At the 2016 event, two teenagers died in separate incidents, while witnesses reported fights and illicit drug use in the campsite area.

T in the Park had been going for 23 years before it took a break this year and Mr Ellis insisted he would be happy for it to continue alongside an urban music festival.

"I've always said a major camping festival and something like TRNSMT can co-exist and they definitely can because they are two different types of event. There are two different needs in the market," he said.

But any future camping event is likely to be geared towards an older audience in an attempt to avoid some of safety issues seen in recent years, Mr Ellis told the BBC.

"There are definitely two tribes now - there's people who like guitar music and people who like EDM music among the under-25s," he said.

"So when we come back with a camping event it probably won't feature EDM and it'll probably be pitched at an older market."

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