Another ATP festival, another hasty change of arrangements. Thankfully for those with tickets to the Drive Like Jehu weekender (including friends of mine), the shindig hasn't been cancelled - but it has been relocated from Pontins in Prestatyn to the Victoria Warehouse in Manchester at just a month and a half's notice. ATP's statement on the switch makes it sound as though their hand was forced by unreasonable behaviour on the part of the Pontins management, who have turned around and said that families can't be expected to share the site with festival-goers (which begs the question of why ATP didn't have exclusive use of the site, which they do for the Stewart Lee weekender).
The change of venues means that punters will now be put up in city centre hotels rather than chalets, so the vibe (if there is one) will be completely different. Whether it works out or not will be interesting, but either way ATP's reputation - already tarnished in the eyes of many - is unlikely to emerge unscathed. I must confess to being slightly happier now that I didn't take the plunge and buy a ticket, but - as I've said several times before (perhaps because I've never been stung by cancellations or switches), I really value their passion and what they do, and so hope they can soldier on fighting the good fight.