“We will be conducting a thorough investigation”: Slam Dunk issues apology after festival complaints

For any alternative music lovers, Slam Dunk North is always a big diary date.

Taking place last Sunday, the festival saw a sold out crowd take to Temple Newsam for the North portion and Hatfield for the South for two days of music to kickstart the festival season.

However, the aftermath of this year’s event seems to have seen a considerable number of complaints, which have been addressed today in an official statement from the organisers apologising for the issues, noting traffic flow, car parking, food vendors, toilets and queues as all problems faced by crowds on the day.

The festival organisers have said that they “will be conducting a thorough investigation, whilst working extremely hard to rectify all problems for future events”.

The full statement has been published on the Slam Dunk Music website about the festival as a whole and reads as follows:

“Slam Dunk Festival would like to address issues which have been raised across the weekend.  

“We recognise there were problems and that some customers did not have an experience to the standard which they expected.  We would like to apologise for the issues which occurred and reassure our customers that we are committed to improving the event.

“We would like to assure all customers that neither event was oversold, and customer safety is, and always will be, paramount to the festival.  Like all other major events, all our event plans were reviewed by local authorities and are in line with industry standards.

“In response to the car parking and traffic issues, as previously highlighted there was an unprecedented number of cars arriving to the festival site who hadn’t pre-booked car parking.  This alongside other external factors created a traffic flow issue which inevitably caused delays into the festival site.  As a measure to combat the traffic flow issue we made the conscious decision to stop checking passes for parking to increase the rate of entry to the car park and to prevent further delays.  Keeping this in mind, we have made the decision to no longer provide on the day car parking, from next year only those who have pre-booked their car park tickets will be permitted to park on site, along with other measures we are looking to implement, we believe these will create smoother entry into event. 

“We also recognise the issues surrounding food vendors and queues.  We were assured that we had an adequate number of food vendors for the expected number of attendees, however, we recognise that this wasn’t the case, and we are committed to increasing the number of traders at future events, along with where they are located.

“Similarly, we recognise related issues surrounding toilets and water points.  We would like to reassure customers that these facilities are in line with industry recommendations and have been increased from previous years, however this is something which we will increase further for future events. 

“We are also aware of access issues, and we will be contacting our access customers directly for their feedback. 

“We recognise there are other issues not highlighted in this statement.  We will be conducting a thorough investigation, whilst working extremely hard to rectify all problems for future events.  We have always been committed to increasing customer experience and we welcome feedback to do this.  We encourage customers to complete our post event survey to assist us with this.

“North – https://forms.gle/jPNFE4w2icfGxGtC7

“South – https://forms.gle/3nV9zJQnC4dkhz558

“Slam Dunk Festival 2023 would like to thank everyone who has provided their indispensable feedback so far. If you haven’t already, please raise any concerns with us directly through our post-event survey.    

“We are sorry about the issues that were encountered over the weekend, we take full accountability, and we are committed to improving our service. 

“It is with your feedback, as registered in this survey, that we will be able to consider all concerns when planning future events. We apologise that some of you did not have an experience that was up to the standard you expect when you attend Slam Dunk Festival

“We are listening to you. We will be updating you on our plans to improve Slam Dunk Festival 2024 later this summer once we have collected all of your feedback. 

“Team Slam Dunk”.

Many festival goers have taken to social media to express their accounts of the day.

One festival goer commented on Slam Dunk’s Instagram page: “I’ve been going to SlamDunk for years now but this year has to have been the worst! And might have possibly put me off for ever returning. It’s amazing seeing the festival grow, but when it reaches the point where people’s safety it as risk it might be worth re considering everything.”

Others followed with similar comments like “Luckily we left early because we were starving, the amount of people I’ve seen that have been complaining about waiting 2-3 hours to get out of the carpark or waiting 2 hours for a taxi is shocking.
This used to be my favourite festival of the year, it’s my 6th slam dunk and now I’m having serious doubts of ever coming again just due to how poorly organised it was.”

However, there have also been plenty of comments from those that attended the festival highlighting different experiences.

A comment left on the Instagram statement read: “Bloody great weekend guys. Don’t let the internet ruin it”.

Another said: “I know somethings went wrong especially at south by the sounds of it but queues for food and toilets etc is expected it’s just the same at Leeds festival or other festivals. I have been to slam dunk since it was Leeds uni and seen slam dunk grow and I had one of the best years this year. Give a little love to slam dunk for setting up a festival we can all go to in first place and meet like minded ppl and see our favourite bands”

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You can leave your feedback for the Slam Dunk North Festival on this Google Form from organisers here.

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