|Reading and Leeds Festivals|
|Date(s)||August bank holiday|
|Genre(s)||Rock, alternative rock, heavy metal, punk rock, indie rock, dance|
The Reading and Leeds Festivals are a pair of annual music festivals that take place in Reading and Leeds in England and are run by Festival Republic. England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland Reading (ˈrɛdɪŋ as Redding) is a town in England, located at the confluence of the River Thames and River Kennet, midway between Leeds ( is located on the River Aire in West Yorkshire, England Rock music is a genre of Popular music often though not necessarily employing Electric guitar, Bass guitar, and Drums. Alternative rock (also called alternative music, alt-rock or simply alternative; known primarily in the UK as indie) is a genre of Indie rock is genre of Alternative rock that primarily exists in the independent Underground music scene This article is about music for dancing in general You may also be looking for Electronic dance music. A music festival is a Festival oriented towards Music that is sometimes presented with a theme such as Musical genre, Nationality or locality Reading (ˈrɛdɪŋ as Redding) is a town in England, located at the confluence of the River Thames and River Kennet, midway between Leeds ( is located on the River Aire in West Yorkshire, England England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland Festival Republic (formerly the Mean Fiddler Music Group) is a UK Music promoter. The events both happen on the bank holiday weekend in August (on Friday, Saturday, Sunday), and share the same bill (usually with one or two exceptions). A bank holiday is a Public holiday in the United Kingdom and also in the Republic of Ireland. Between 1998 and 2007 the dual festivals were known officially as the "Carling Weekend" until parting ways with their sponsor Carling in November 2007. Carling is the name of a brand of Lager in Canada, Australia, South Africa and the United Kingdom.
Reading Festival, the world's oldest popular music festival still in existence, has had various musical phases, as detailed below. In the twin-site era, rock, alternative, indie, punk and metal have tended to dominate. Rock music is a genre of Popular music often though not necessarily employing Electric guitar, Bass guitar, and Drums. Alternative rock (also called alternative music, alt-rock or simply alternative; known primarily in the UK as indie) is a genre of Indie rock is genre of Alternative rock that primarily exists in the independent Underground music scene The festival typically has the following stages:
The festivals are run by Festival Republic, which was divested from Mean Fiddler Music Group. Festival Republic (formerly the Mean Fiddler Music Group) is a UK Music promoter.  For promotional purposes during 1998-2007 they were known as the Carling Weekend: Reading and the Carling Weekend: Leeds. Unsurprisingly, these titles were seldom used when not required, although NME did so as part of its involvement. The New Musical Express (better known as the NME) is a Popular music Magazine in the United Kingdom which has been In 2007, the organisers welcomed "Reading Festival reclaiming its prestigious name" when the sponsored title was abolished. 
In 2007, the capacity of the Reading site was 80,000 and the Leeds site was 70,000.  This was an increase of several thousand on previous years The Reading festival is held at Little John's Farm on Richfield Avenue in central Reading, near the Caversham Bridge. Caversham Bridge is a bridge across the River Thames between Caversham and the town centre of Reading. The Leeds event is held in Bramham Park, the grounds of a historic house. Bramham Park is a country house between Leeds and Wetherby, West Yorkshire, England. Campsites are available at both sites and weekend tickets include free camping. Day tickets are also sold.
The Reading Festival originates from the National Jazz Festival, which was conceived by Harold Pendleton (founder of the Marquee Club in London) and was first held at Richmond Athletic Ground in 1961. The National Jazz and Blues Festival was the precursor to the Reading Rock Festival and was the brainchild of Harold Pendleton the manager of the prestigious Marquee Club The National Jazz and Blues Festival was the precursor to the Reading Rock Festival and was the brainchild of Harold Pendleton the manager of the prestigious Marquee Club The Marquee is a legendary music club first located at 165 Oxford Street, London, England when it opened in 1958 with a range of jazz and Skiffle This festival, in turn, took inspiration from events held in America. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the Throughout its first decade the festival changed names and moved around sites several times, being held at Windsor Racecourse, Kempton Park and Plumpton, before reaching its permanent home at Reading in 1971. Windsor Racecourse, also known as Royal Windsor Racecourse is a Thoroughbred horse racing venue located in Windsor, Berkshire, England Kempton Park Racecourse is a Horse racing track in Sunbury-on-Thames, Surrey, England, which is a western suburb of London 16 miles 
The line-up settled into a pattern of prog rock, blues and heavy metal during the 1970s. Progressive rock (often shortened to " progressive " " prog " or " prog rock " is a form of Rock music that evolved The Blues is a vocal and instrumental form of Music based on the use of the Blue notes It emerged as an accessible form of self-expression It did dabble with punk rock in 1978 when The Jam, Sham 69 and Penetration played. The Jam were an English Mod revival band active during the late 1970s and early 1980s Sham 69 are an English punk band that formed in Hersham in 1975. Penetration were a Punk rock band from County Durham originally formed in 1976  The festival attempted to provide both traditional rock acts and new punk bands, leading to clashes between the two sets of fans. Rock music is a genre of Popular music often though not necessarily employing Electric guitar, Bass guitar, and Drums. Although The Ramones played the following year, the festival gradually became known for focusing on heavy metal and rock acts. The Ramones were an American rock band often regarded as the first Punk rock group 
During this decade, the festival followed a similar format to that established in the late 1970s, with large crowds flocking to see the era's leading rock and heavy metal acts perform on the last two days, with a more varied lineup including punk and new wave bands on the opening day.
In 1984 and 1985, the Conservative Party-led local council effectively banned the festival by reclaiming the festival site for 'development' and refusing to grant licences for any alternative sites in the Reading area. In 1984, many acts were already booked to appear, tickets were on sale with Marillion (2nd on the bill one evening the previous year) due to be one of this year's headliners. Marillion are a British rock group Formed in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, England in 1979 their recorded studio output comprises The promoters tried in vain to salvage what they could and a proposed move to Lilford in Northamptonshire failed. Northamptonshire (or archaically the County of Northampton; abbreviated Northants The resulting gap in the British festival calendar kickstarted the rise of the minor CND benefit event at Glastonbury from obscure beginnings as a "hippie" festival in the 1970s to its present corporate giant status.
Eventually a Labour Party council election win in 1986 saw the festival restored to fields adjacent to its original site with a line-up put together from scratch at just three months' notice. The Labour Party is a Political party in the United Kingdom. Founded at the start of the 20th century it has been since the 1920s the principal party of the  The Arts & Entertainments councillor responsible for the re-introduction of the festival was Martin Salter, now MP for Reading West, the constituency where the festival is held. 
The following year notched up a record attendance at what was to be the last of the "classic" rock years of the festival, with headlining acts such as The Mission, Alice Cooper and Status Quo. Alice Cooper (born Vincent Damon Furnier; February 4, 1948) is an American rock singer songwriter and musician whose career spans five Status quo is a Latin term meaning the present existing state of affairs or "the state in which"
1988 saw a disastrous attempt to take the festival in a mainstream commercial pop direction, dominated by the likes of Starship, Squeeze, Bonnie Tyler and Meat Loaf (who was "bottled" off stage), and the ensuing recriminations eventually saw the ousting of original festival promoter Harold Pendleton by the Mean Fiddler Music Group organization. A starship is a theoretical Spacecraft designed for traveling between the stars, as opposed to a vehicle designed for Orbital spaceflight or Interplanetary Squeeze are an English band that came to prominence in the United Kingdom during the New Wave period of the late 1970s and continued recording successfully Bonnie Tyler (born June 8 1951 in Skewen, Neath) is a Welsh rock Singer. Michael Lee Aday (born Marvin Lee Aday; September 27 1947 better known by his stage name Meat Loaf, is an American rock Musician Festival Republic (formerly the Mean Fiddler Music Group) is a UK Music promoter. 
Pendleton initially tried to continue at a new site near Newbury using the name "Redding Festival" but this failed to take off. Meanwhile, the official Reading Festival, now under Mean Fiddler guidance, continued at the Thames-side site in Reading, pursuing an almost completely Goth and indie music policy that alienated much of the traditional fan base and saw attendances continue to fall. The Goths ( Gothic: Gothic usvg|14px|u]]Gothic asvg|14px|a]]Gothic s Indie rock is genre of Alternative rock that primarily exists in the independent Underground music scene
The future of the festival looked in doubt at this point. However, things were to improve from 1992 onwards as the festival broadened its musical policy and attendances gradually increased.
In 1991, Nirvana played the first of their two appearances at Reading, midway down the bill. Nirvana was an American rock band that was formed by singer/guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic in Aberdeen Washington. This is also the year the first britpop bands such as Suede and Blur started to show themselves on the festival circuit. Britpop is a subgenre of Alternative rock that originated in the United Kingdom. Suede (or The London Suede in the United States) were an English rock band of the 1990s and the early 2000s that helped start the Britpop musical Blur are an English Alternative rock band that formed in London in 1989
1992 was one of the most famous in the festival's history. Nirvana played what was to become their last UK concert, and one of their most famous. The band's frontman, Kurt Cobain took to the stage in a wheelchair pushed by music journalist Everett True, parodying speculations about his mental health. Kurt Donald Cobain (February 20 1967 – c April 5 1994 was an American musician who served as lead singer, Guitarist, and songwriter for the Seattle For the cartoon character see The Outbursts of Everett True. Everett True (born Jerry Thackray in 1961) is Then he got up and joined the rest of the band, playing an assortment of old and new material. At one point in the show before singing "All Apologies", Cobain revealed to the crowd the recent birth of his daughter Frances Bean and succeeded in having the crowd chant "Courtney, we love you!" in unison (in reference to his wife, musician Courtney Love). " All Apologies " is a song by the American grunge band Nirvana. Frances Bean Cobain (born August 18, 1992) is the only child of Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain and Wife Courtney Love. Courtney Michelle Love (born Courtney Michelle Harrison on July 9 1964 is an American Rock musician and Golden Globe-nominated actress 
Over the next few years the festival continued to grow as the popularity of outdoor festivals increased. Britpop and indie continued to dominate along with rock. Notably, rap acts such as Ice Cube began to appear regularly on the main stage to mixed receptions. Hip hop music, also referred to as rap music, is a Music genre typically consisting of a rhythmic vocal style called rap which is accompanied with O'Shea Jackson (born June 15 1969 better known by his Stage name Ice Cube, is an American Actor, Screenwriter, producer, and
In 1998 it absorbed the failed Phoenix Festival. The Phoenix Festival was set up by Vince Power of the Mean Fiddler Music Group in 1993 as an alternative to the established Glastonbury and Reading This resulted in a now infamous on-stage spat between The Beastie Boys and The Prodigy over the song "Smack My Bitch Up". The Prodigy are an Electronic music group formed by Liam Howlett in 1990 in Braintree Essex, England. 
In 1999, the festival gained another leg at Temple Newsam in Leeds, where V Festival had been held in 1997 and 1998, when it was clear that the Reading site was far too small to deal with the demand. Temple Newsam (historically Temple Newsham) ( is a Tudor - Jacobean house with grounds landscaped by Capability Brown, in Leeds, Leeds ( is located on the River Aire in West Yorkshire, England The V Festival is an annual music festival in England, the first to be held simultaneously at two sites - currently Hylands Park in Chelmsford and A system where the line up of Reading play Leeds the following day, with the bands from Leeds' opening day playing the final day in Reading, soon developed. 
After a successful first year in Leeds, a continued resurgence in the popularity of outdoor music festivals led to the Reading festival selling out more and more quickly every year. The Leeds leg, however, was plagued by riots and violence which led to problems in retaining its licence.  The worst of these was in 2002, after which Mean Fiddler moved the festival to Bramham Park, near Wetherby to the east of Leeds in 2003. Bramham Park is a country house between Leeds and Wetherby, West Yorkshire, England. Wetherby is a Market town in the City of Leeds Metropolitan borough, West Yorkshire, England  Since then, security at both sites has increased and problems appear to have been quelled.  However, this has also lead to an increase in demand.
The first few years of the 2000s saw a varied but predominantly rock line-up, however as the decade has progressed the Main Stage and Radio 1 Stage line-up has followed music trends and featured more and more indie artists, that have become very popular in the British music mainstream. However, one day (Sunday in the case of Reading) is traditionally set aside for hard rock and metal. This was most pronounced at the 2006 festival, which saw little hard rock on the first two days, but featured bands such as Mastodon, Slayer and Pearl Jam on the Sunday. Mastodon is a Grammy -nominated heavy metal band and are one of the most notable bands in the New Wave of American Heavy Metal. Slayer is an American Thrash metal band founded by Guitarists Jeff Hanneman and Kerry King in Pearl Jam is an American rock band that formed in Seattle, Washington in 1990 However, this can be arguably laid down to the growing popularity of the Download festival in June providing a solely metal, hard rock and punk outlet.
The Evening Session tent has also had its share of infamous sets, like Feeder's set in 2002 which saw the tent heavily overcrowded, with many people watching from outside as a result. Feeder are a British rock band formed in Newport, South Wales in 1992 by singer /songwriter/ Guitarist Grant Nicholas The band decided to play the second stage to keep the show low-key, as it was their first official appearance after the death of their drummer Jon Lee. Jon Lee ( March 28, 1968 – January 7, 2002) was the original drummer for the successful British rock band Feeder The BBC Radio 1 broadcast of the set was repeated in late 2002, due to the bands frontman Grant Nicholas unable to attend a Steve Lamacq acoustic session after doctors' advice, and later in early 2006 on 6 Music. Grant Nicholas (Sometimes AKA Grantley) (born 12 November 1967, Newport, Monmouthshire) is the lead Singer of Steve Lamacq (born 16 October 1965) sometimes known by his Nicknames Lammo (given to him by John Peel) or " The Cat
The announcement of the line-up and ticket release for the 2006 festival saw weekend tickets for Reading sell out in just under two hours, breaking all records so far, and emphasising the growing desire for live music because of the "rock revival" of the past few years, and the fact that the Glastonbury Festival was not taking place. For the classical music and theatre festivals co-founded by Rutland Boughton between 1914 and 1926 see Glastonbury Festival (1914-1925 The Further Weekend tickets went on sale again soon after and sold out in 26 minutes.
In 2005, the Festival spawned the Reading Fringe Festival in the town. The Reading Fringe Festival was started in 2005 in Reading Berkshire, after a group of several musicians producers and promoters decided to showcase Reading's musical talent Much like the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, this sees venues in the town hosting fringe acts hoping to draw crowds and industry figures from the larger festival. The Edinburgh Fringe (officially the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, commonly just The Fringe) is the world’s largest Arts festival. The Reading Fringe has run annually since then.
A second Fringe followed in 2006 and a third in 2007.
In 2006, Mean Fiddler announced that they were using the Government's new licensing laws to keep the festival going later into the night (an attempt to quell some of the unrest of earlier years). Events 1248 - The Dutch city of Ommen receives city rights and fortification rights from Otto III the Year 2007 ( MMVII) was a Common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. Kings of Leon is a rock band made up of three brothers and their first cousin from Tennessee, USA. Razorlight are an English rock band formed in 2002 They are primarily known in their home country having topped the charts with the 2006 single America and The organisers kept revellers happy with the Aftershock tent, an Oxfam tent and the Silent Disco. The concept of a silent party, Silent Gig or silent disco involves party-goers dancing to music received directly into headphones
Tickets for the 2007 festival were released on 19 March and sold out within hours. Events 1279 - A Mongolian victory in the Battle of Yamen ends the Song Dynasty in China. However, over 3,000 fans found that their tickets were cancelled due to computer errors which caused a confirmation e-mail to be released even though the payment was denied. 
The 2007 festivals ran from 24 to 27 August. Events 479 BC - Greco-Persian Wars: Persian forces led by Mardonius are routed by Pausanias, the Spartan However, concerns were raised at the Reading site due to the torrential weather conditions in the UK.  The floods caused the River Thames to burst its bank causing floods at the festival site. Melvin Benn, the festival organiser said "I'd guess about 25% of the campsite is under water at the moment and before long someone will be saying that the festival is in danger, so I just wanted to state that the festival will definitely take place".  Plans were put in place to move campsites and car parks if the floods persisted. These plans were laid down by Melvin Benn in an e-mail sent to those signed up to the Reading Festival newsletter and on the official Reading Festival website.
Also at the 2007 festival, Kaiser Chiefs played at the Leeds portion of the festival (their home city) under the name Hooks For Hands in the Carling tent.
The Reading and Leeds Festivals 2008 are scheduled to take place on the weekend of the 22 to 24 August. Events 49 BC - Julius Caesar 's General Gaius Scribonius Curio is defeated in the Second Battle of the Bagradas River
This is also the first year "BBC Introducing. Events 307 - After divorcing his wife Minervina, Constantine marries Fausta, the daughter of the retired Roman Emperor . . " will have a stage at the festival.
For the full line-up, see Reading and Leeds Festivals line-ups
While the mass-participation can and bottle fights of the 1970s and 1980s have long since ended, the Reading Festival 'tradition' of unpopular bands being bottled off (being forced off stage by a barrage of audience-thrown plastic bottles and cans) has continued throughout its history. The Reading and Leeds Festivals are a pair of annual Music festivals that take place in Reading and Leeds in England. Bottling is when a concert audience throws various objects at the performers onstage
The 1983 reggae act Steel Pulse suffered possibly the most vicious bottling-off ever seen at the Festival, before or since, disappearing within moments of appearing on stage under an avalanche of missiles launched by the temporarily united ranks of punks and rockers waiting to see The Stranglers. Steel Pulse is a well-known Roots reggae musical band They originally formed at Handsworth Wood Boys School in The Stranglers are an English rock music group formed on 11 September 1974 in Guildford, Surrey.
In 1988 Bonnie Tyler bravely completed her set despite an unending barrage of bottles, turf and litter. Bonnie Tyler (born June 8 1951 in Skewen, Neath) is a Welsh rock Singer. Unfortunately, the day's headliner Meat Loaf was not so brave, retreating ingloriously only 20 minutes into his set after taking a 2-litre cider bottle full in the face. Michael Lee Aday (born Marvin Lee Aday; September 27 1947 better known by his stage name Meat Loaf, is an American rock Musician
Good Charlotte experienced it in 2003, but remained on-stage and encouraged the crowd to throw more. Daphne and Celeste were a pop duo whose most famous songs were " Ooh Stick You " and " U Slipknot is an American band from Des Moines Iowa. Slipknot consists of nine members the current band members are Sid Rage Against the Machine (sometimes shortened to RATM or Rage) is Good Charlotte is an American rock band from Waldorf Maryland that formed in 1996
In 2006 at Reading, Panic! at the Disco lead singer Brendon Urie was struck in the face with a bottle, knocking him unconscious and forcing the band to stop mid-song. Panic at the Disco (formerly known as Panic! at the Disco) is a Rock band that originated in Las Vegas Nevada, USA. Urie received treatment from his road crew for several minutes, then the band continued from the point at which their song was interrupted. 
Historical lineup posters can be seen on the official festival website.