The Harrogate Advertiser published a response from a person to my original letter about Harrogate needing a music festival, see here:

I was happy that there was some feedback, but of course, it was a pretty negative reaction. The letter was basically saying that I was wrong to call for change in musical attitudes in the town. I had to do what was right at the time!

In my personal opinion, any town or city can withold its traditions and be part of new musical movements or clubs that can make certain places. For an example, the Hacienda nightclub in Manchester opened by Factory Records in the 1980’s virtually oversaw the regeneration of the Northern Quarter in Manchester. Harrogate was not Manchester but that is an example of what can shift places.

The Hacienda also virtually increased the number of applications applying to Manchester Universities at the height of the rave craze in the late 1980’s, when club culture in the United Kingdom was really hitting the big time in Manchester.

That’s right – festivals, clubs, gigs amongst other things really do have the potential to change places, and industries but according to this letter, which I was happy with a reply, things can’t change.

This letter was originally published in the Harrogate Advertiser on 21 August 2009.

From: C Tanner, Chain Lane, Knaresborough.

THE letter from Dan Birch – ‘Harrogate Needs Music Festival’ made me laugh. The first quote was ‘As a place to grow up in and live, Harrogate is certainly one of the best in Britain.’

Sorry to say so but all I can reply to that is “this is Harrogate for you’.

He also wrote: “However, the negative issues which have been raised against the Dragongate music festival show that the town in unwilling to accept something alternative.”

Sorry to say so, but all I can reply to that is ‘this is Harrogate for you’.

There has not been a single murmur nor any form of tribute over the death of the world’s greatest music legend, Michael Jackson. This alone was an utter disgrace and downright disrespectful.

What makes you think the HBC or the people who organise events are capable of putting on a ‘music festival’ suitable to the town? They are too vacuous and set in their ways to allow a decent music festival.

The best they can do are the ageing David Essex, Paul Potts and the withering, three-chord-strumming Status Quo. Harrogate has never had anything remotely fashionable, futuristic, upmarket or up-to-date. Wrong place.

The library chairs make more music.