Give everyone at Y Not Festival 2017 a full refund

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On 28th July 2017, 30,000 music fans headed down to Y Not Festival in Pikehall, Derbyshire, to enjoy a weekend of indie music, fantastic headliners and one of the best weekends of their lives. What it ended up being was an unorganised mess.

At around 13:15 on Day One, the main stage closed while the rain poured down over the Peak District. At a music festival, the first thing you can expect is rain and mud, so that's what organisers should have been prepared for. When the main stage shut, it cut off three band's performances: Matt Wills, King No-One and HAUS. No one had any clue what was happening with any of the acts. It actually took the front man of King No-One to come to the front of the stage to talk to his fans to explain what was happening to their set - something Y Not failed to tell us. Then, when the main stage finally re-opened, set times were cut short.. Sundara Karma, a band that was due to be on for 30 minutes ended up playing for 20. The Hunna, a band due to play for 45 minutes, played for 30. When it was Clean Bandit's turn, they were due to play for an hour and have a full orchestral set. They ended up playing for 20 minutes with just a DJ set and their singers. Not even the whole of the band were on stage. After this happened, Day One's headliners, The Vaccines, were cancelled entirely due to the rain - something the festival should have prepared for.  No, there isn't a lot you can do about the rain, but Y Not should have been prepared. I've been to festivals with thunder and lightning before, and yet the shows have continued as planned.

The next thing I need to mention is the accessibility around the whole of Y Not. I was also shocked at how inaccessible the entire festival was after Day One. Yes, it’s a festival, and we can expect mud and rain, it’s why we’re here, we know what to expect, but as I needed to be in accessible camping due to my disability, the mud that we saw was absolutely horrific. At previous festivals we’ve been to, any customer who required accessible needs could go through another entrance via backstage to get to the main arena, and wouldn’t need a member of staff to get through. Even though this was partly the case at Y Not, I didn’t know of this until after Stereophonics had finished performing, as I needed help getting through the mud, as I was falling over a lot of the time. I could only go through this way with a member of the festival staff, whereas at other festivals, we didn’t need to. Also, where the disability site was located, it was way too far away from the main entrance to the festival, I was tired after walking that distance, and the mud was way too much too. The site was incredibly inaccessible for people with disabilities, and even though the Access Team were fantastic and the only great thing about the entire festival, and do not deserve any of the blame on this disastrous festival, not even they could do anything to do this because of how bad and disorganised everything was. Y Not argues that they had spent 30% more on infrastructure and 80 tonnes of woodchip, but no one could see any of this during the festival itself.

I have heard people being woken up to things in their tents being stolen, and one of my friends woke up with someone inside trying to steal something. My tent was invaded on two occasions, and there were over 60 cases of reported theft on Day One alone. Security did nothing about this at all, and the number kept increasing afterwards.

But another major reason Y Not Festival failed, was because of the lack of communication. Due to my disability, I could have a 2-4-1 Companion ticket, which included everything that I had ordered, including coach travel, should have been duplicated. This wasn't the case, and I had to call Big Green Coach and pay £44 for another coach ticket. Once the company realised that Y Not had not communicated this information with them, they were quick to apologise and told me to email the festival about receiving a refund. Phone charging was another issue, as I paid £22 for a charger online via the Y Not website, which they wouldn't give me due to lack of communication between the festival and it's partners. It's the same between the Y Not and its audience on the days of the festival also didn't help, as acts were moved and we didn't know a thing, artists had cancelled and we didn't know, even changes to set times on Saturday meant lots of people missed out on seeing their favourite act. They communicated all of this on social media, but due to the lack of signal, hardly anyone got the message of this.

And then finally, we come to the main reason we should all be receiving a full refund - They cancelled Day 3 of Y Not. Thousands of people came to Y Not just to see headliners Two Door Cinema Club as well as other bands including Happy Mondays, Twin Atlantic and Maximo Park. One woman tweets the following:

"Paying £140+ to watch ONE act, kill your legs & be dripping in mud; probably returning with pneumonia, is not my ideal weekend"

We are angry and demanded refunds, which we were promised, however, Y Not responded with this statement on 4th August:

"FIRST OF ALL WE ARE SO SORRY FOR THE DELAY IN GETTING FINAL INFORMATION TO YOU. WE COMPLETELY UNDERSTAND THIS ENTIRE SITUATION HAS BEEN A FRUSTRATING ONE, THERE ARE LOTS OF DIFFERENT PARTIES INVOLVED AND IT CAN TAKE SOME TIME TO GET FINAL INFORMATION. PLEASE KNOW THAT THIS HAS BEEN PRIORITY NUMBER ONE SINCE THE CANCELLATION OF THE FINAL DAY OF THE FESTIVAL. A REFUND OF 50% OF YOUR TICKET COST INCLUDING VIP/THURSDAY (ALSO AS UPGRADES) HAS BEEN PROCESSED, WHICH DOES EXCLUDE BF AND POSTAGE. THIS SHOULD BE IN YOUR ACCOUNT NEXT WEEK, IN SOME CASES THIS COULD TAKE UP TO 14 DAYS DEPENDING ON YOUR BANK. (THIS DOESN'T INCLUDE) BOOKING FEES / POSTAGE, CAR PARKING, CAMPERVAN / CARAVAN AND SHUTTLE BUS / COACH."

This is outrageous! After doing some research, I have realised that Y Not are not giving us what we deserve, take this quote from the Citizen's Advice.

"If the organisers cancel the event, you are entitled to a full refund of the face value of the ticket, and usually the booking fee. The face value is the cost of the ticket as printed on it, without extras on top such as postage, administration and booking fees. You are entitled to this refund because the organisers failed to provide what they sold you, and have broken their contract with you." - Full details can be found here: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/event-tickets/event-tickets/if-the-organisers-cancel-the-event/

Y Not are not giving us what we are entitled to! By signing this petition, you are not just one step nearer to getting your refund, but getting refunds for everyone else too! Every customer should get every penny back for what they paid as Y Not did not provide what they advertised and promised. You can make a change just by signing this petition! Together, we will get our money back!



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