Grumbles Rumble On About Funding Of Welsh Food Festivals

29 May

I was hopeful that once we’d published on and welshfoodbites and then ensured our Best Of Welsh producers had got the wag food funding festival listing, that everything would calm down here, but that has not been the case.

Far too many producers have got grumbles on a variety of issues. There’s of course the old chestnut that they haven’t got into various festivals, they have been thrown out this year from festivals they have supported for years and then the numbers of English stands that are being allowed into Welsh festivals. Now as if that wasn’t enough hassle, I’m getting complaints that this year Pembrokeshire Fish Week has taken funding from the food festival budget.

According to wag, PFW applied and received funding for this year of £31,671.00. Yet according to me, PFW was funded under Rural Development Plan, RDP from 2007 – 2013. Last year PFW received RDP funding of £55,636, plus £30,711 from Pembrokeshire County Council. In 2010 grant funding was £77,157. I’m not surprised that with the Pembrokeshire County Council ‘form filling team’ assisting the Fish Week team, I’d expect their paperwork to be in order! So PFW was one of the lucky 33 out of 52 festivals that applied for funding, to get it. But what is puzzling me at the moment is that I didn’t think EU could award two grants to the same event.
So I’ll continue to investigate that one………………………………….

Update 1st June

I asked Pembrokeshire Press Office to help me on my Fish Week query and there response is as follows:

 The Pembrokeshire Fish Week festival was part funded through the Rural Development Plan for Wales under axis 3 from 2007 to 2010. Because the start of this funding programme was delayed, this continued until November 2011. The festival has received no RDP funding since this date.

So that clarifies PFW is not getting funding from RDP and festival funding budget, which is good. However, Kath’s still not happy wag. As PFW now joins Wag’s Big 3 to become one of Wag’s Big 4  – that these 4 festivals take nearly £138k out of wag’s £339,280 festival budget. But I do wonder if there is any hope of PFW achieving wag’s wish of ever festivals becoming self funding. Yet as  Abergavenny, Cardiff and Conwy haven’t had to so far, I don’t think PFW need worry – doesn’t look like wag actually mean for that to happen – you can jsut keep growing and wag will give you International status to your funding can just carry on flowing into your coffers. Different story for those smaller festivals who didn’t get any money at all or didn’t get as much as they requested.




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  1. Best of welsh

    May 31, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    Thanks for sending through list of festivals and the funding they are getting. But
    just 33 festivals being supported this year which is way down.
    I have just added up that Abergavenny, Cardiff, Conwy and now Fish Week are taking nearly £138k out of a total budget of £339,280 that’s nearly half gone propping up what we’ll now have to call the BIG 4, not the Big 3. How will wag monitor Fish Week and the number of food stands they are supposed to have? I would have thought that Fish Week would have to have 25 stands each day, or will Fish Week be able to ignore wag’s criteria, simply because of who they are?
    I’d like to know how many festivals got thrown out by wag on the grounds that they’ve no money left. This is not a fair sytem in my eyes even if you can ignore wag’s favourites. But then organsisers will be too scared of wag to complain because those of us in the trade know what happens if you dare to disagree with wag
    It’s good of you to get this info for us, info we’ve never had before thought not sure why not.