Green light for 2021 Butlins Festival at later January date

Butlins announce that its 2021 Brass Band Festival will now go ahead at a later date in January with comprehensive measures in place to reduce Covid-19 risks to visitors and competitors.

  The festival will now go on at a slightly later date

The organisers of the Butlin's Brass Band Festival have announced that the 2021 event will now take place at a slightly later date at its Skegness Resort over the weekend of Friday, January 29th — Monday, February 1st.

4BR has been informed that the main Butlin's organisation has been working in conjunction with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in the presentation of varied events for several months and it is hoped that the 2021 Brass Band Festival will be able to provide a blueprint to enable further live music events to resume safely in the future.

Good news

Festival Director, Steve Walker, said: "I am delighted that we have been able to provide the banding community with some much-needed good news in these uncertain times and my thanks go to the Butlins organisation for all their help in making this happen.

Whilst some things may have changed, such as a reduced number of guests, new social distancing measures, drive-through check ins and stringent, more frequent cleaning procedures, it will still be the same Butlins, packed with fun and great entertainment.

The Butlins team have been working incredibly hard to keep guests and staff safe. Indoor venues will be running at limited capacity with social distancing in place and all guests are asked to wear a face covering while indoors. The Butlins app has also been updated to make it easier to plan the weekend in advance.


He added: "By ensuring refunds on entry fees and accommodation through the Butlin's 'Coronavirus Book-with-Confidence Guarantee', bands can focus on the musical aspects of the event over the next few months without any ongoing financial concerns over it.

No one yet knows what the Covid restrictions will be after Christmas, but we will follow the guidance at all times in our continuing efforts to make the Butlin's Brass Band Festival an enjoyable, safe and important event for brass bands."

Safety measures

4BR was informed that other measures are to be implemented to ensure the safety of performers and other guests at Skegness, including a slight relaxation of contest conditions that will see bands take the stage directly on their timed arrival at their specific venue and warm-up on stage.

Further details of these and other measures designed to reduce the risk of spreading infection will be announced in the coming weeks.

Meanwhile, front-of-house activities, including in restaurants and bars, will be guided by Butlin's staff, each of whom will have undergone specific training to ensure that appropriate social distancing and other Coronavirus-specific measures will be adhered to throughout the weekend.

The Butlins contest administration team has also agreed to extend the deadline for entries until 1st December to assist bands in their planning, and bands wishing to enter can do so via the Brass Bands England website at www.bbe.org.uk/events

Make choices

Speaking on behalf of Brass Bands England, CEOr Kenny Crookston commented: "The involvement of the DCMS at events held at Butlin's resorts over the past few months has enabled sport and other areas of music to have an element of normality during a very difficult period for everyone.

This collaboration has also enabled bands to be able to make choices that otherwise would not have been available, while it is hoped that the relaxation in contesting conditions will assist organisations with members unable to attend due to Covid-19 restrictions to participate."


He added: "We are pleased at the extent of the measures being planned by Butlin's, in conjunction with DCMS, to ensure the safety of performers and other guests, and that the wellbeing of those who do make the trip to Skegness is at the top of everyone's agenda."

The Butlins Brass Band Festival combines a family fun break with the camaraderie of a brass band contest.

No one yet knows what the Covid restrictions will be after Christmas, but we will follow the guidance at all times in our continuing efforts to make the Butlins Brass Band Festival an enjoyable, safe and important event for brass bandsButlins


The Championship Section retains its current format, with the set-test of Phillip Wilby's 'Paganini Variations'.

As an added bonus, the winner of the 'Most Entertaining Band' prize in the Sunday entertainment contest will now receive an invitation to the Brass in Concert Championship at Sage Gateshead in November 2021.

Bands in Sections 1-3 will play own-choice works and bands in the 4th Section will now play 20-minute own-choice programmes with no restriction on content, to be assessed by open adjudication.

Once again, Butlins has invested heavily with its prize money fund, with the Championship Section title winners carrying away a potential £12,000. Lower section winners will claim £2,000, with podium prizes of £1,000, £700 and £500.

The Festival is unique in that band members enjoy combining a short family break whilst participating in the competition. The weekend features live performances from well-known brass stars with the added bonus of the Splash Waterworld and all the great facilities and attractions for which Butlins is so famous.

Find out more

To find out more about the resort and the Coronavirus Book with Confidence Guarantee please visit: www.butlins.com

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