Sep 17, 2021,
4 minutes
UK festivals: The summer of … violence?

Is there a reason why the summer festivals of 2021 have been connected to conflict and violence?  


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When summer comes around, so does the UK festival season.

Whether you have attended a festival this year or not, your social media accounts would have been plastered with endless videos and pictures making you feel like you had.  

However, a re-occurring theme appeared that made skipping out on bigger events such as Creamfields and Reading and Leeds a lot easier this year.


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No dancing, just fighting 


Violence and conflict were prominent within the grounds of festivals such as Parklife and Wireless this year. Both festivals are favourites in the scene. But there was a concern when bad behaviours dominated the atmosphere of the events. 

With the easing of lockdowns and restrictions, could it be that we weren’t quite ready to be social on such a large scale?  

Tensions among us have been brewed over the last year and a half. Higher bouts of anger and frustration have occurred due to countless lockdowns and restrictions. There have been higher cases of bad mental health too.

Some have let these loose through the form of aggression towards each other, causing problems for others.


Un-security at Wireless festival



Imaged sourced from


Wireless Festival was hosted between the 10 and 12 of September at Crystal Palace Park this year. Big-name acts such as Future, Skepta and Migos headlining. The Hip-Hop and Grime event took a turn when a fight broke out between fans.

Security guards took it into their own to strike back onto a girl who was being aggressive towards them, instead of being broken up successfully.





Get out of the way, Parklife 


A large-scale fight broke out at Parklife festival hosted at Heaton Park in Manchester on the weekend of the 11 and 12 of September this year.

The fight happened at the Kuluki stage, putting a dampener on the event’s mood.  


The fight was seen to happen in a mosh pit, which quickly dispersed after dancers were interrupted by the aggression and fists of others.  

A young 22-year-old boy was stabbed in the leg in another conflict. An investigation into this attack is still live according to the Mirror 





Where do we go from here for UK festivals? 


With aggression and violence not being new to the festival scene, it definitely has been more defiant in recent years. Conflict can be seen from more angles and in more capacities with social media in the hand of almost every event attendee. 

Fortunately, violence is just a small portion of what is to come with festivals, events and clubbing. A lot of this is due to the intoxications of drink and drugs.

But, when in the midst of a crowded field, club or room, please remember to be safe and to leave your Covid frustrations at home.  

The party is back. So, let’s make sure we are enjoying the freedom, and not putting ourselves back into a cage. 


Words by Drew-Alexandra O’Keeffe