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Take Off tribute festival grounded on Sheppey

A music festival for tribute acts called Take Off at The Aviator pub on Sheppey has been grounded.

Organisers have had to pull the plug after failing to sell enough advance tickets.

Paul Rogers at Isle Fest
Paul Rogers at Isle Fest

Paul Rogers of LD Events said: “Sadly, after a long discussion between company partners we have to cancel our event on Saturday, July 23.”

It was to have featured his own 80s tribute band Go Span Duran and music from The Jam, UB40, Freddie Mercury and Stevie Wonder.

He said: “The honest truth is we haven’t sold anywhere near enough tickets for this event to go ahead.

“We didn’t sell enough to cover the cost of the non-refundable deposits that were due imminently to our stage supplier, PA hire, tech crew personnel, first-aiders, the acts, the bands and booking agents, let alone the up-front costs already laid out on tickets, marketing and advertising.”

He rounded on those who had delayed buying tickets.

The Aviator pub at Queenborough Corner on the Isle of Sheppey
The Aviator pub at Queenborough Corner on the Isle of Sheppey

He said: “Some will say it wasn’t taking place for weeks but we cannot take the gamble that people will buy tickets at the last minute. There is nothing more frustrating than seeing an event cancelled and then hearing people say ‘Aw I was going to go to that!’

“We are gutted we won’t be able to bring a great event to the Isle of Sheppey for you all to enjoy but, like any business, we can’t make it work if the numbers of sales aren’t there. Sadly, our ‘use it or lose it’ motto has come back to haunt us.”

Those who bought tickets will receive refunds or transfers to three other shows at the Oasis Academy Theatre.

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