Following MPF2016 we took the opportunity to ask you what you thought of the festival and ideas on how we could improve. Although we’ve all been putting on gigs for years, this was only the second MPF. We thought everything went really well but we know there are always ways to improve. We also wanted your input in how we developed the festival. The response was amazing with 285 of you completing the survey. Maybe the chance to win a free ticket helped.
We thought that we would respond to some of the suggestions you made and let you know what we have changed for 2017…
There were a couple of times during MPF2016 when some of the venues were very full. We also had an issue with the flow of people around Sound Control on the Friday night during the Roughneck Riot set. You will be pleased to know we are not using the middle floor for bands this year. This means we have increased the Friday capacity and it now it’ll be easier to move around.
We’ve also increased the capacity of the whole festival by adding a new stage at Gorilla on Saturday. The acoustic stage moving from the Thirsty Scholar to Underdog doubles that stages capacity. There will also be DJs in Font and free access to Satan’s Hollow before midnight with your festival wristband giving you more options after the bands have finished elsewhere.
Removing the acoustic stage from the Thirsty Scholar also means that we have made more space for you to relax and sit down between bands. The Scholar is going to hold the first Manchester Pint Festival (see what we did there?) with a wide selection of beers and a ‘meet the brewer’ event by our friends at Signature Brew and Alphabet Brewing Company. Keep an eye on the MPF website for more info soon.
Food & Beer
For the previous two festivals we have secured drink promotions at all the venues. The survey highlighted that the deals available were not always very clear. At MPF2017 we are going to make sure that there will be posters in each venue with the details of each drinks promo. We will also put all the info on our website and in the programme.
A number of people asked for more craft beers and ales. As mentioned we are holding the Manchester Pint Festival at the Scholar, who will be stocking a large range of beers including an extensive selection of vegan beer. We’ve also invited the guys from Signature Brew to make sure that there are craft beers stocked in as many venues as possible, at a reasonable price. Their session IPA ‘Roadie’ will be your friend all weekend.
On the food front, we are increasing the options available to you. Manchester’s Tea Time Collective will be set-up under the arch opposite Sound Control all day Saturday. They will have a wide variety of vegan food on sale. Inside the Scholar you can sit down for some veggie or vegan food from resident chief Martin the Mod.
Down the road there is also food available from Font and Blackdog. Both are giving 25% off to everyone with a festival wristband.
Manchester Punk Festival is organised across several city centre venues. We are aware that some of these venues do not provide full accessibility, especially for those people who may struggle to use stairs. Unfortunately, the viable venues available to us in the centre of Manchester limit our options. For MPF2017 we will be using Gorilla, which is fully accessible, and we are increasing our use of Zoo. Although we continue to reassess and consider how to make the festival more accessible to all people in the future, we recognise that having access to just some of the performances in 2017 is restrictive and disappointing.
Because of this, we would like to offer a discounted ticket to people who will experience some restrictions due to accessibility issues. To enquire about a discounted ticket, or if you have any questions about access at any of the venues, please message the facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Other Activities and Merch Stalls
We’ve invited Richard (Cubesville Fanzine) and David (Under The Pavement) to put together a programme of films and talks. These will be on downstairs at Font through-out Saturday. Pull up a sofa, put your feet up and learn something new. We will have a full list of what they have planned up on the site soon. Font will also be to host a few distros from great DIY labels, fanzines and punk book stalls. MPF merch will be available in the middle floor of Sound Control.
Club night for Aftershow
Last year we just had the one aftershow on the Saturday. Zoo was packed watching the last four bands of the festival but this quickly filled up. Many people asked for more options after the headliners had finished. So this year we have increased the Friday night aftershow capacity by using Zoo. With the cover bands still on upstairs at Zombie Shack. On the Saturday night we have even more options. We have extended the Zombie stage so that the bands play right through until 2am. And we return to Zoo for the final four bands of the festival. If you just want to dance and drink, all wristband holders have free entry to Satan’s Hollow nightclub before midnight.
Longer Headliner Sets
We also had a number of requests for longer ‘headliner’ sets. We increased the set length for the final few bands, with all headliners playing for 1 hour (apart from Paint It Black, 45 minutes is enough when your songs are that short).
More MPF Backdrops
For some reason some of you wanted us to have more MPF backdrops. We’ve had some awesome designers creating some great images for us each year. So we’ve gone and made them massive for you.
Clearer Directions and Info
We’re going to be upping our signage game at MPF 2017. We appreciated it was annoying not being able to take drinks between venues, but unfortunately that cannot be changed due to venue/street licensing. However, what we can do is put up a lot of signs clearly pointing out what you can do and where to go!
We really, really appreciate all and any feedback on the festival – we want you to be a part of how it grows and the shape it takes so all feedback is taken on board and considered. We can’t wait for MPF2017, hopefully we’ll see you there, and make sure to fill out the survey after the festival too!
Check out the clashfinder so prepare your schedules!