In what can only be described as some horribly unwelcome, party-pooping news, our favourite boutique festival Secret Garden Party is breaking up with us.
This year’s Cambridgeshire extravaganza will be the last after founder and ‘Head Gardener’ Freddie Fellowes decided to close the gates to his popular summer bash.
Secret Garden Party began life 15 years ago as a bottom-of-the-garden gathering of 500 like-minded people and has since played a huge part in keeping the UK’s festival circuit fresh, alive and kicking.
Secret Garden Party is my favourite festival. Never been to a place like it before. Really sad to see it go.
— Lauren Martin (@LaurenPR_) March 2, 2017
“Much has changed since our first Garden Party, when there was nothing else like it in the UK: Facebook, YouTube and Twitter had yet to be invented and no one knew what a boutique festival was, let alone glamping,” Fellowes said in a statement.
“I have never compromised our principles and I never will. Secret Garden Party has always been a beacon of what you can do within those terms and, as imitation proves, it has set the bar for everyone else going forward.
“What better way to honour the love that has been given to this project and wholly demonstrate this principle than going out with a bang? This isn’t some principled self-immolation: this is opening up it for new forms in the future.”
But it’s not time to mourn just yet, as Crystal Fighters, Metronomy and Toots and the Maytals headline the final party from 20-23 July and Fellowes has hinted that fans can expect a “phoenix rising from the ashes” in the form of a different festival further down the line.