Notice Board

Letter from the Chairman
Brixham Pirate Festival Committee, on the 17th of January 2018

It is with a heavy heart and great regret that we announce that the 2018 Festival cannot go ahead because of a severe lack of funding.

As you will have read on our Facebook page and seen in the press, we have been trying very hard to raise funds to put on the 2018 Brixham Pirate Festival, through:

donations via our Go Fund Me page and PayPal account;

sales of BPF T-shirts and sweatshirts;

bag packing in supermarkets;

being Father Christmas on the 3 weekends leading up to Christmas;

selling advertising space in the brochure and online;

collecting at other festivals and in town shops, businesses and accommodation providers;

applying for grants, sponsorship and to local councils.

When we won Silver, then Bronze for the Best Tourism Event of the Year in 2016 and 2017 we anticipated more local organisations would want to be associated with such a fantastic, award-winning, community event. We hoped more financial aid would be offered locally by those wanting to show support for Brixham and the festival.

Although the Brixham Pirate Festival has brought a lot of money into the local area over what used to be the quietest Bank Holiday of the year, it has become harder and harder to secure enough financial support to run the festival. It was difficult to fund the 2017 festival. This year it is impossible.

To put the festival on safely we need to raise £30,000. As context, this is nearly the same amount as the Grinagog festival shortfall, underwritten by Torbay Council. Because our festival is on public access land we cannot sell tickets, and because it is so successful we must comply with a lot of legislation. That brings big costs such as road closures and diversions, ambulances and extra public toilets, before we begin to pay for entertainment. The Committee can only generate a small proportion of what is needed so funding the festival has always depended on donations, sponsorship and grants. Sadly over the last 9 months local businesses have been finding it increasingly difficult to make ends meet. Firms that formerly supported us can do so no longer, or have cut their support drastically. The final blow for us was when Brixham Chamber of Commerce told us they were not in a position to donate anything in 2018 due to poor market revenue.

But festival costs do not go down, and in January and February we must have enough money to cover nearly all expenditure. We have a deficit of £24,000. We have been trying to reach this target since June 2017. It is extremely unlikely that we can achieve it now unless somebody comes forward guaranteeing to fund this festival fully by February 4th, 2018.

Please direct any correspondence regarding this matter to 

My heartfelt apologies go to all our loyal supporters, who have booked to attend the festival and were looking forward to another wonderful weekend in 2018.

Pete Berresford,
Brixham Pirate Festival Committee