Gainsborough: This year’s Riverside Festival has been cancelled due to lack of funding

Gainsborough Riverside Festival 2013. The parade passes the Old Hall G130608-1h
Gainsborough Riverside Festival 2013. The parade passes the Old Hall G130608-1h

The annual Riverside Festival will not be taking place in Gainsborough this year.

The Riverside Festival Committee gave itself until February to raise the money it needs to stage this year’s festival.

The Riverside Festival has been going for 12 years and has grown every year and it became the third biggest event in Lincolnshire and last year’s festival attracted over 8,000 visitors.

The future of the festival was put in jeopardy last year when funding was lost from Gainsborough Town Council and the events coordinator Gary Cooke left the committee.

In October, the committee gave themselves a target to raise £8,000 by the end of February.

Last year it cost £11,000 to put on the festival.

Gainsborough MP, Sir Edward Leigh, said: “I’m very sad to hear that this year’s Riverside Festival has been cancelled.”

“It’s brought a bit of fun and colour to Gainsborough for over a decade now, and it would be a shame to lose it.”

“I hope funding can be found to keep the Festival going.”

Festival committee member, Trevor Halstead, said: “I am gutted.”

“I am moving into a new shop on the riverside and I was looking forward to the festival.”

“It is the highlight of the year.”

At the end of February Festival secretary, Caz Davies, was still hopeful that the Festival would still be able to go ahead even if it had to be scaled down or another option would be to alternate it and have it every other year.

She said: “Another option is to spend this year fundraising for a big one next year.”

“We could alternate it year on year. That is better than not having anything at all.”

“It is better to have the festival every other year than fold permanently.”

“Plenty of people are still wanting to do things.”

“It’s crazy to think that if everyone over the age of 18 donated £1 we would have enough to cover it.”

People have taken to the Gainsborough Standard Facebook Page about the cancellation of the festival.

One person posted: “What I don’t understand is that it’s called Riverside Festival but has very little to do with the River itself.”

“Couldn’t they get barge owners to maybe do something.”

“I moved up from down south and the Festival of the Seas is something really worth going to so why can’t Gainsborough do the same for it’s town?”