New festival announced for Reading site

Heavenly Planet Festival will debut next July

New festival announced for Reading site: The new Heavenley Planet Festival is expected to be similar to WOMAD.

The new Heavenley Planet Festival is expected to be similar to WOMAD.

Photographer: Lisa Rocket19 September 2008

The event, which is being set up Heavenly Planet UK Festivals – a company owned by Reading's bosses Festival Republic and WOMAD's former artist director Thomas Brooman CBE – will run from 10-11 July 2009.

Organisers are aiming the festival at families and younger festival-goers, with 15,000 fans expected to attend the first event.

Speaking about the new event Festival Republic boss Melvin Benn said: "For two years now the council and I have been discussing the idea of a new, innovative, diverse and outward-looking festival. But it was only when I ran the idea by Thomas and established that it was possible to bring his idea's into the structure as Artistic Director and joint shareholder, it became a must.

"Thomas brings everything we were looking for to the table and the partnership is now complete. It will make for a very exciting future - a heavenly future I hope!"


Early plans suggest the site will house two big top tents with stages of equal size with food stalls and camping to be made available too. There are also talks of using the nearby Rivermead Leisure Centre as a possible indoor venue.

Major world music artists are expect to perform over the weekend as well as emerging talent from the local area.

The highest weekend tickets are expected to be priced around £70.

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