Download Festival announces 10,000-capacity pilot event for June 2021, no social distancing required

Lateral flow and PCR testing will be required for attendees.


Image: IconicPix / Alamy

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Download Festival has announced that it will host a smaller version of its festival this summer as part of the UK Government’s Event Research Programme. The announcement follows the news that the regular full-capacity festival has been postponed once more, this time to 2022.

The pilot event will have a capacity of 10,000, and take place at Donington Park just like a regular Download festival. Everyone on the site will be required to take a lateral flow test for COVID-19 and produce a negative result. The event will be partially overseen by researchers from Public Health England, who will gather data on transmission risk. A statement by organisers notes that “this data will help to ensure that events later this summer can go ahead safely.”

Notably, aside from the testing requirements and the reduced capacity, the other restrictions which have become commonplace over the past 15 months, such as masks and social distancing, will not be in place. The nature of the event requires that attendees are above the age of 16, along with a number of other criteria. Attendees will also need to read and agree to a consent document first to ensure they understand the research process and meet the required criteria before they can buy a ticket.

The lineup for the event will be announced this Friday (28 May) along with tickets going on sale. As a “thank you,” those who hold tickets for the much-delayed 2022 edition will be given priority access to the Pilot tickets.

Attendance will cost £120. If you purchase a ticket and then test positive, you will be refunded. Find out more here.

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