Canal festival 2020 postponed

10th June 2020
Oxford Canal Festival - Covid 19 Update

The Oxford Canal Festival Organising Team have taken the decision to postpone the OxfordCanal Festival 2020 until September 18 th 2021. This decision has not been taken lightly and has been under constant review since the COVID-19 pandemic began. We are grateful to our supporters for making it possible to get so close to getting started, but events have intervened.. This decision has been made as a result of several concerns. First, the council is aware that the current 2 metre social distancing rule would be difficult to enforce at a large festival, especially after the consumption of alcohol and on canal towpaths.

Second, the relaxing of lockdown measures has seen the region’s ‘R’ number jump above 1, meaning that a new round of lockdown measures may be enforced later in the year. Third, we are also conscious that the lockdown has had a large impact on many of the city’s businesses, meaning they simply do not have the money to provide sponsorship for the event. This, coupled with the increased costs that a 2020 event would incur through the purchase of PPE, washing stations and extra barriers, makes the event less financially viable.

With all these factors to be considered, and as always having the safety of the public as a top priority, we are planning to reschedule the event by a year to Saturday, September 18 th 2021.

To mark the original date of the Festival, this year we will be streaming some short films and some photos from past events, including an update on the progress of the restoration of our community narrowboat Kilsby, towards which any surpluses generated by the Festival will be dedicated. More info will soon be available here.

Thank you for your interest in the festival, say in touch and see you in 2021.