Prosecco Festival is coming to Ipswich

Discussion in 'Central Ipswich' started by dan5, Jun 29, 2017.

  1. dan5

    dan5Founder MemberStaff Member

    Are we a town of alcoholics or is the town in desperate need of visitor boosts?

    So the Prosecco Festival in Ipswich has been announced for November. We have had wine and spirits, beer, gin etc.  I am expecting a Champagne, Whisky, Whiskey, Rum, Brandy, Vodka, Cider, Cognac, Perry, Tequila, Port etc. festival or two to be revealed in the next 24 months.

    Questions should be raised as to why we are seeing floods of these events. I don't agree with the festival term most go by, especially when one off events or on different days each year. Furthermore, for such a big term, I would expect a street party in the town centre rather than an enclosed event in the town hall.

    Ipswich Borough Council have admitted the reason why civic buildings such as the Ipswich Town Hall, Ipswich Museum and Christchurch Mansion have hosted past events is to boost visitor numbers. Surely, they cannot include the footfall of adult alcohol parties/drink tasting with entrance figures to the museums and town hall?

    On a moral point of view, I don't think the council should be encouraging these forms of events at all. Yes, they rake in quite a bit of money for the limited time the places are hired... and they are hyped up compared to an outing to the pub (they might obtain visitors outside the town but limited due to how widespread the events are - if Ipswich has one most large towns and cities will have them). It is like when the borough allowed endless gambling shops to open in the town centre without a care about the damage it could do, before the fallout of homelessness etc.

    Too many low-brow events as alternatives to existing behavioural trends. They try to hype it up so its classy and its responsible adults who are alcoholic beverage snobs enjoying a drink or two from middle class backgrounds as a day visitor to Ipswich. None of the sort. Most people attending will just be interested in consuming alcohol of any description regardless of taste, likely as a tag-along social event with a friend or on a date. It takes a lot of organising a proper event - and it seems these numerous "festivals" which can be set up with limited cost and time, are just "easy wins" to add to the Ipswich calendar. If you can organise an event in half a day by yourself, it isn't a festival!

    I would personally prefer a combined festival over a long weekend (probably with food) where it can draw benefits to the local economy. Why not hold it over a Bank Holiday weekend?! You can have the main events for tasting etc. but also let the pubs get in on it. Encourage people to stay over at hotels for those who travel to Ipswich because it is such a big event and doing so will also boost restaurants and cafes, perhaps even shops while you are at it. Nope, let's just have another alcohol event in a civic building. This approach financially limits people from consuming too much alcohol too rather than spread out across the year. Some people literally spend almost their whole pay packet on recreation after payday. Absolutely bonkers.

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  3. martinc

    martincFounder Member

    I agree, we seem to be having lots of these "piss up" festivals at the moment, from Gin, German Beer, and now Prosecco. I really don't see the appeal or the need.
    The last german beer thing a month or so ago, located in a big tent on the lawn outside Christchurch Mansion looked and sounded awful, ruining an otherwise pleasant afternoon on the park with bad german music, for those of us not partaking. There is at least one more of those coming up, apparently the "official" Oktoberfest. How it can be "official" beats me.
    A lot of these "festivals" tour around various towns on consecutive weekends i think. Nothing cultural about them, simply money making ventures by the organisers. They must have just discovered Ipswich is a soft touch for such rubbish...
  4. OP

    dan5Founder MemberStaff Member

    I hear Glastonbury (Festival, although no one really uses this full title anymore) is touring around the UK next year lol

    I don't know any proper festivals which go on tour!

    Oktoberfest cannot be official for many obvious reasons (but I suspect some German company is running the touring event):-

    • Oktoberfest runs in Germany for 17-18 days, in Ipswich it is a 2-day event (Friday and Saturday)

    • Despite "October" the festival starts in September and spends most of its time in September

    • The Ipswich event runs after the official 2/3rd of a month festival ends, presumably to protect the proper festival

    • Ipswich Oktoberfest is at the end of October, the proper Oktoberfest ends at the start of October

    • In Germany, the festival includes parades etc, a bit more than beer and food

    • Ipswich Oktoberfest Organisers claim "Europe's biggest bier tent" - might be true

    • Ipswich Oktoberfest will be beer, food and oompah band ...

    I get the impression you are in a big tent full of other people and a stage with a themed band and unlimited bier. Doesn't excite me much. The hot food must be done outside so you would need to go outside to get it before going back in to watch the entertainment. £16.50 to stand (£11 if you are an early bird). £22 for a seat! They don't look like they have sold many tickets so far - still early days perhaps but it is well advertised.

    St Peter's are doing what must be an "unofficial" event much cheaper...  Saints Oktoberfest which falls on the first day of the actual event in Germany (September). Two German events in the town is a bit much! I googled it and found it is a world-over event including Australia.

    It is being flogged as a "new event" but last year there was an Oktoberfest in Ipswich run by the council at the Corn Exchange. Resulted in negative reviews on tripadvisor. Supposedly brought in 400 people! The official event this year is stating 30,000 litres of bier... at 3 events of 5 hours each that is 2000 litres per hour. Either going to have hundreds of people at each event session or a lot of left over bier, I suppose they take it on to the next event.
  5. martinc

    martincFounder Member

    I looked into the "official" Okteoberfest when it was announced. I think I traced it back to a Dutch company, and an almost identical, but differently branded event was being held by them in Norwich shortly before here..
  6. OP

    dan5Founder MemberStaff Member

    Doesn't surprise me that Norwich takes presence. Dutch - missing two e and an s - of course, the other "dutch"... already official, lol.

    I thought you were going to say it was German BUT Non-Bavarian perhaps Berlin, Frankfurt or Hamburg situated.

    Ipswich could do well to look at another cultural festival not taking place widespread around the world or across the UK, and be the sole place in the UK undertaking that... good for tourism.

    I don't think this is a valid point to make but I will make it anyway... we have very few German people in the town, although Oktoberfest is a bit of fun and something novel for many, why not utilise our multi-cultural community to do similar which can be organised by these very people who know best without being a money grab exercise? Truth is, we have residents... but no "community".

    I know we have the Indian Mela and a couple of other events, which is a bit cliche in the UK... it is like a curry-house being called international food. Not knocking those events but why not have something a little more unique, which isn't the same old thing every year? The FestivalPortuguese in Peterborough, is an example of doing something different. Found in a quick google search without specifying the country. None of these events need to be big but let them take ownership in exhibiting their culture, food and drink to the place they now call home. I think it would be special.

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