Cambridge Folk Festival has been running since 1965, it takes place in July and has a capacity of 14,000. As part of their commitment to sustainability they have taken the Festival Vision:2025 pledge to cut environmental impacts by 50% by 2025. Here their environmental consultant Liz Warwick talks about how they have focused on reducing the carbon emissions from audience, crew and supplier travel.
“Held in urban green parks, Cambridge Folk Festival is close to bus routes serving the train and main coach/bus stations and the City centre. To promote audience use of public transport we offer a free bus pass for the return trip from the stations and a free shuttle bus between the campsite and festival. As we’re not far from the city a significant number of attendees walk or cycle with plenty of cycle spaces provided.
For the last few years the Festival has built up a social media/ communications campaign and enhanced internal processes to promote eco awareness, including sustainable travel, actively promoting public transport, car share options available and locating nearby electric vehicle charging points.
In 2019 Cambridge is partnering with Tuned In Travel, a specialist travel operator, to offer dedicated coaches and minibuses to cut down on individual car use. The Folk Festival is also partnering with Energy Revolution to offer the audience the opportunity to carbon balance their journey miles.
We closely monitor and record the impacts of transport to pinpoint areas we need to tackle – each year new ideas for increasing sustainable travel at Cambridge Folk Festival are reviewed and put into action.
Recent detailed transport measurement and analysis has shown:
- Car use at 60% (down from 74%)
- Staff and contractor car passes decreased by one third by encouraging car share and low carbon travel.
- Traders’ and caterers’ travel emissions reduced by 30% over 2 years due to the actively selecting more local suppliers – saving over 2 tonnes CO2e.
- Car share at about 4% of audience travel.
- 10% audience walking and nearly 7% cycling.
- Public transport used by 11% of the audience
Check out the Festival Vision:2025 crowdfunder campaign to see how you can support the festival industry to come together around a vision of sustainable events – helping more organisers cut their environmental impacts and share best practices, resources and innovations: www.crowdfunder.co.uk/festivalvision2025