- 24 Aug 21
Speaking on behalf of the organisers, Festival Republic, Melvin Benn has just issued a statement confirming that if a licence is granted, then the festival will proceed in September.
A huge surge of hope has gripped the music nation that Electric Picnic 2021 can still go ahead. This extraordinary development happened this evening, following comments from the Chief Medical Officer, Tony Holohan that, in his view, Electric Picnic can go ahead, if attendees are fully vaccinated.
It is not, however, as simple as that. Laois County Council recently refused a licence for the event for 2021, on the grounds of the latest health advice.
The latest back then, that is. But clearly that has changed today, with the intervention of the CMO. The question now is: can and will the council change its decision and grant the licence that would allow the Electric Picnic 2021 to proceed?
That question is unlikely to be answered until tomorrow, and there is no guaranteeing that the councillors will be able to convene as quickly as the situation demands. Nevertheless, there is more hope now than at any stage over the past 12 months that Ireland's biggest festival might make its return.
A major campaign has been waged over recent weeks, the objective of which was to pressurise NPHET and the Government into re-opening live music and events from 1 September, 2021. While that may not come to pass, the possibility of Electric Picnic happening currently feels like a very positive outcome from that campaign.
"It’s hard for me to believe what I just read,” Melvin Benn of Festival Republic said, in a statement. “But I want to. We are asking Laois County Council to immediately reverse the decision it took to refuse the licence and grant it immediately in line with the CMO’s conditions: that everyone attending should be vaccinated, exactly as we said a month ago.
"What a springboard to the future this could be,” he added. "Change the decision Laois County Council and let’s have the Picnic. Tell us tomorrow and we are on our way."