Women's Trad Festival - An Update Press Release

© Claire Coles

For the past 5 months, we've been working tirelessly to make sure this year's festival is the best yet. From adding additional tickets, such as a self-rescue course, to finding the tastiest food for Saturday night - we were so psyched to start sharing our plans with you. However, a major challenge this year has been festival insurance. Despite having had cover for three years, alongside rigorous safety procedures and policies in place, no company felt they could insure this year's festival. Going ahead without insurance was not an option.

Still struggling mid-April, the BMC stepped in. Determined to see Women's Trad Festival continue, they have worked closely with us to ensure the festival is covered. After weeks of hard work, we are nearly there and are just finalising the documentation. It has taken longer than we thought to do this and we are very grateful for their continued support. Then, less than a week before planned ticket sales, we had some more bad news: our agreed venue for the festival's circumstances changed and they could no longer accommodate us.

With a delay on insurance and suddenly no venue, we called a meeting. Our agenda was simple - 'Do we need to cancel the festival?'. After all our hard work we didn't want to do this, and more importantly, we didn't think you would want us to do this.

&copy Charlie Low Photography  © Charlie Low
© Charlie Low Photography

&copy Claire Clifton Coles  © Claire Coles
© Claire Clifton Coles

So where does that leave us?

  1. Tickets will NOT be on sale on the 15th May. They will be on sale as soon as possible.
  2. We're speaking to a lot of other venues and have a number of options. We want to ensure they meet our high standards and requirements.
  3. All of this means that the ticket price will be higher than last year. We do not have an exact price yet. However, we know tickets will significantly more than last year, and expect them to be over £100.
  4. There are still LOTS of awesome things to look forward to. For more information visit our brand new website - link in bio (yes we've redesigned and built that too in our spare time!)
  5. We're nearly there - bear with us. We will be open and transparent and keep you in the loop. This is your festival as much as ours and we are very busy working to make sure it can go ahead.

Thank you for being such a strong and supportive community - it is your enthusiasm that has kept us afloat during many hard moments. ❤

&copy Jessie Leong  © Jessie Leong
© Jessie Leong

For more information Women's Trad Festival

29 May, 2019

Alternatively, attend a pinnacle club meet and save yourself £100+.

29 May, 2019

But the Pinnacle Club requires people to be competent trad leaders already; the WTF provides support for people who haven't done any trad or are still learning to lead.

There's obviously a fair amount of overlap (I know various Pinnacle members have attended the festival as leaders in the past and I'm sure there'll be some this year), but it's not just a fancy meet.

29 May, 2019

Absolutely. I’ve been to a couple and even £100+ is excellent value for what you get. It’s an amazing atmosphere and I don’t think there’s anything else quite like it in the UK (which is probably why it sold out in 3 minutes last year). It must be bloody hard work to organise though and I feel for them; I hope they manage to get something sorted.

(The first year I went my leader was from Pinnacle. She has been climbing for as long as I’ve been alive and I felt incredibly lucky to have her. The second year it was another very experienced woman who also works as instructor and again I felt really lucky as she was brilliant - I’ve since had another day’s instruction from her and have more planned.)

29 May, 2019

You're like a ray of sunshine on every Trad festival announced. Looking forward to your first comment on next year's Arcteryx Lakes meet.

29 May, 2019

Youve nailed the key difference there slabby.

One focus of WTF is skills sharing and confidence building from experienced leaders with less experienced learners, whether they're making the transition from indoor wall to rock, from seconding to leading, or from sport to trad. The similarity with the Pinnacle Club is that no-one who comes along on a meet is left out. You don't have to come with a pre-arranged climbing partner, the meet coordinator will sort out someone for you to climb with.

However therein lies the key difference. Precisely because you could be paired up to climb with someone completely unknown, the club has to be as confident as we can be that all our members and prospective members are a safe and competent pair of hands, as there's no supervision, we just go climbing.

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