Music festivals return to Chelmsford in ten-year deal

Major electronic music promoter Creamfields is coming to Chelmsford next year as part of a new deal to bring a big festival every year to the area for the next decade.

Plans for an all-new 50,000 capacity two-day camping festival in 2022 will see Creamfields bring their award-winning festival south for the first time, by taking over the Grade II listed Hylands Park.

With the iconic Hylands House as its backdrop, the multi-stage festival will also give revellers the chance to experience the colossal 15,000 capacity Steel Yard superstructure.

The event takes place on June 3 and 4 – covering a four-day bank holiday weekend next year to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

The launch of Creamfields Chelmsford is a game changer for the UK festival landscape, the promoters have said, and coincides with the 25 year celebrations of its award winning sister festival Creamfields Daresbury, which is staged annually in the heart of the Cheshire countryside and attracts sell out audiences of 70,000.

Since its inception Creamfields has become one of the biggest electronic music festivals in the world, attracting big name artists including Calvin Harris, Swedish House Mafia, Eric Prydz, Tiësto, deadmau5, Carl Cox, Bicep LIVE, Chase & Status, Pendulum and The Chemical Brothers.

But it also means that Chelmsford has been brought back as a major host for some of the biggest annual festivals – following the decade long deal Chelmsford City Council has struck with Festival Republic.

Cllr Stephen Robinson, leader of Chelmsford City Council, said: “We have been working for sometime to negotiate a long term deal and we pleased it has been agreed and we have got a festival date.

The announcement comes after Chelmsford City Council signed a 10-year deal with Festival Republic – who have pledged to stage a major event each year for the next decade at the Chelmsford site.

Importantly it is serving to put Chelmsford back on the map as a host for many more major events – not least because of the financial boost they bring to the council coffers.

The budgeted proposals suggest the council will earn more than £200,000 from the event.

Mr Robinson said: “One of the extra good things about this from my perspective is that because it is always going to be the May back holiday.

“That is good means Hylands Park can be available during the summer holidays which it wasn’t when V was running.

“That was always the criticism of mine in the past that the park was out of action for a month so I’m really pleased that won’t be the case.

“We think that Creamfields will put Chelmsford Hylands Park back on the map as a place for major events.

“It will attract attention. We are looking to attract a wide range of different events that appeal to a wide range of different audiences.”

Piers Meyler

Local Democracy Reporter