Help secure the future of Audio Farm Festival, a Music Crowdfunding Project in Sandycroft, Clwyd, Wales on Crowdfunder
“Audio Farm Festival 2018 Official Thank You”
It’s hard to describe Audio Farm Festival 2018, but if we could say one word it would be… Magic! The Audio Farm energy and the tribe that make it happen or attend seems to grow year on year. We hope this is not the last! As a collective tribe, we believe we have created something very special and unique in an industry that is being consumed by the corporations. Audio Farm is the essence of the meaning ‘Roots Festival’. A platform that plants positive seeds of change. A safe space for all ages. A wonderland for the collective consciousness to expand. A home that we have long forgotten, a home where we are free from fear and judgment, a home where we share and support one another, a home which our ancestors knew well. This year the site worked beautifully with two separate energies either side of the walled garden. The chilled and relaxed Healing Space, The Tent of Symmetry, Kids Area and The Nest in one side, and the high energy sounds of The Sundance, The Trip and The Home of the Drum on the other. The music, workshops, performers and production were unworldly. The energy was perfect at every stage from sunrise until the late hours, from the Sunrise Yoga at 7am to the epic fire shows after 1am. In between, the 16 hours a day of varied music from all over our blue marble was just so incredible. So thank you to the crowd, the crew, the performers, the music artists, the music, the healers, the children and everyone who contributed with time or buying a ticket. Thank you deeply. Without you guys Audio Farm events are impossible and if this is our last event, then we have bowed out on a truly exceptional note.
“The crowd fundraiser objective”
The aim of this crowd-funder is to fundraise £10,000, which is half of what is needed to secure the survival of Audio Farm Festival. The other £10,000 will come from other fundraisers in the next 12 months. If we reach our £20,000 target by September 2019, we will be happy to announce that Audio Farm Festival or One Tribe Festival will return in 2020 and for many years afterwards. This funding will secure the long-term future of Audio farm Festival.
Over the past decade, Audio Farm has grown organically through grassroots. No sponsors. No corporate buyouts. No financial backing. All profits (when available) going to charity. In the current festival market, this is very rare, as corporations swallow more festivals year on year with mass buyouts. Audio Farm stands firm against these corporations and has done since our first event 2009 and our first festival in 2013.
“How Audio Farm Festival has grown in numbers and event costings”
Audio Farm started at Workhouse in 2013 with 400 people, an event that cost us £8000 to host. From there, we moved to Hendre Hall with a 700 capacity event that costs £20,000. To the monster of One Tribe Festival 2017 with over 2800 people, with the event costing £260,000. Audio Farm Festival 2018 housed over 1800 people with a cost of £150,000 to run.
“What is the current debt of Audio Farm / One Tribe Festival Ltd?”
To grow a festival like One Tribe Festival 2017 and Audio Farm Festival 2018 takes time, and along the way, debt has been accumulated, like any start-up business/fundraiser event company. The debt carried over from One Tribe 2017 stood at £38,000, and this year’s event is estimated to be around £20,000, which equals £58,000. All going well in 2020 our aim would be to break even, and in 2021 significant profits to charity are projected.
“Why are we in this situation? How do we stop this from happening in the future?”
A few mistakes in 2017 were admittedly made in which we learnt upon for Audio Farm Festival 2018, and with slight adjustments, we believe we can crack the model for a profitable event (for charity) in 2020. One of the main aspects that will change in 2020 is tightening up on volunteers and guest list. We would be in a completely different situation if people who had received tickets to either volunteer or perform hadn’t have let us down by not fulfilling their shifts. In 2018, around 75 volunteers never turned up at all or completed half a shift. Leaving the bar, a core income generator, totally strained, and we were therefore unable to serve as much alcohol as we estimated we would. The other issue lies with people who either break in or blag their way in. We all understand that this happens all over the Festival industry, but we can’t afford this to happen at our expense. If all of these people paid and made the event fair, we would be in a positive financial situation. We estimate around 500 people have either broken in or not completed their volunteer shifts during our past 2 events. This would have been an extra £55,000 income, and therefore minimal debt would have incurred. We also believe that the ticket prices for the show, lineup, creative installations/decor, healing & holistics, performers and extra entertainment is underpriced. This is due to trying to keep ticket prices competitive in an industry of festivals where ticket prices are propped up by sponsors, or the selling of environmentally unconscious products. One example of this is that Audio Farm refuses to sell bottled water, which is a huge income for many events in the UK, but also a huge detriment to Mother Earth.
“Are profits made at present?”
Simply, no. We believe the perception is that “Wow, Audio Farm has loads of people here, they must be making lots of money”. This is wrong. From the 1800 people on site in 2018, only 800 paid for a ticket. This equates to just over £80,000 in ticket sale revenue, with a further £10,000 income coming from food traders and stalls, and £10,000 from car parking, campers and other extras. This equates to £100,000. Leaving £50,000 to cover.
“Where does the rest of the £50,000 come to cover the 2018 costs?”
The bar. This year the bar profited around £30,000. Leaving £20,000 debt to cover costs for our 2018 event alone. The bar under profited mainly due to volunteers not attending shifts and causing the queues to be bigger.
“What does the £10,000 fundraiser goal cover”
Audio Farm has hit a financial level where we have lent all we can, we therefore need to raise £20,000 in a year (September 2019). We are looking at raising £10,000 from this crowd funder, and the other £10,000 will come from other fundraising means in 2019, TBC. Combined the £20,000 will ensure Audio Farm survives and our 2020 festival will happen. The £20,000 ensures a small wage for our incredible crew who return year after year, and the production crews who currently offer services at a much reduced rate. As without them, Audio Farm would cease to exist.
“Who and how much are the Audio Farm crew paid in wages”
For Audio Farm Festival 2018, the 6 months prep work, 2 week build, pack down and the live days have been run by a crew over 150 volunteers or on £30 or £50 a day, or 3 days work for a free ticket. The total combined hours accumulate to 1000s of hours. The £30-50 a day is way, way below minimum wage as some days will be 14-hour shifts for £50. Luckily we have a crew that will run and prep the festival for this wage. A bunch of legends that we must look after.
“How long have Audio Farm crew been getting paid for? Have they ever gained financially?”
Since putting on our first event in 2009 in Manchester and our first festival in 2013 no wages or money has been paid to the crew until minimal wages have started to be introduced in 2017. Countless hours of unpaid work went into One Tribe 2017, putting the core team under a lot of personal financial pressure and debt, on top of the overall debt of the festival. For example, all core directors were on site for 5 weeks in 2017 and not one person got a penny. In 2018 the core directors, some build crew and some live crew have been paid £30-50 a day for 12-14 hours a day shifts.
“Where do Green Paw Projects donations and £25 guest tickets go to?”
Even though there have been zero profits recorded on the audited accounts since Audio Farm officially started trade under One Tribe Festival LTD in early 2017 as a charity fundraiser, Audio Farm events have still donated over £15,000 to Green Paw Project in past 3 years. This has been generated from people who pay a £25 donation for guest list tickets, donations via the website, donations at the festival and profits for individual events like Winter Gathering 2017 and Charity Fundraisers.
PLEASE HELP US REACH OUR TARGET!
1 – Anyone who blagged their way in, never turned up for a shift or failed to perform as agreed please donate £100 minimum on here. You can remain anonymous and let organisers know by emailing email@example.com that you have paid. We do have a list of blaggers and non-attended volunteers, and if you do not donate by 1st October you will be named and shamed publicly on our Facebook Group, and be banned from future Audio Farm events.
2 – Anyone who wants to support who can afford to donate, please donate. Even if you bought a ticket we need to pull together as a tribe.
3 – Anyone who came for free (eg DJs, crew, guests etc) if you can afford to donate, please donate.
“What’s next for Audio Farm”
Once we have reached our target, Audio Farm Festival 2018 can be fully paid off. This will still leave a deficit of £38,000 (from One Tribe Festival 2017). This debt is covered by the core crews life savings but does not have to be paid back immediately, and therefore can be paid back from future events. 2019 will be a fallow year, but with this £20,000 target covered, 2020 Audio Farm Festival plan can commence. We will take a year to breathe and ensure a way of making the event self sustainably profitable. Our goal by 2022 is to make £50,000 a year for charity and then year on year.
To summarise we’re asking anyone who volunteered but didn’t show up for a shift, anyone who sneaked into the festival, and anyone who acquired a free ticket for whichever reason to please donate the ticket price to us. Plus anyone else who values Audio Farm and its crew to donate and help us secure the festival’s future.
PLEASE LET’S ALL PULL TOGETHER AS ONE TRIBE AND ENSURE THE FUTURE OF AUDIO FARM FESTIVAL.
This content was originally published here.