The first Whitby Goth Weekend of the year starts today.
Thousands of goths will descend on the Yorkshire coast for the bi-annual festival, which Whitby has hosted in April and October for over 20 years.
This year, however, a row between the organisers of the WGW festival and long-term venue the Whitby Pavilion has meant that there will be FOUR goth events in the town this year.
This weekend's (April 12-14) is the traditional Whitby Goth Weekend - but later this month (April 26-28) the rival Tomorrow's Ghosts Festival will take place. There will also be two competing events in the autumn, again just weeks apart.
Tomorrow's Ghosts - which has secured big-name goth acts - will now use Whitby Pavilion while the original festival, which has been running in the town since 1994, has found alternative venues.
When will the rival events be held in 2019?
Whitby Goth Weekend will take place from April 12-14 and October 25-27 to coincide with Halloween. Its new rival Tomorrow's Ghosts Festival will be held on April 26-28 and November 1-3 - giving local businesses in the town only a short space of time in which to prepare for another influx of visitors. Tomorrow's Ghosts organisers have also committed to holding the festival in 2020 as well.
Which venues will be used?
Tomorrow's Ghosts is centred around Whitby Pavilion - the venue which was previously the focal point for the Whitby Goth Weekend's live music events. Their headline acts are Pop Will Eat Itself and New Model Army.
Whitby Goth Weekend have found a range of alternative locations. Gigs and club nights will use venues including the Met Ballroom, Met Lounge and Abbey Wharf. The Bizarre Bazaar market will be housed in Whitby Leisure Centre and the Brunswick Centre. The Green Dragon will host a beer tasting event and Whitby Rifle Club is holding an alternative modelling contest.
Why did the Whitby Goth Weekend leave the Pavilion?
The festival organisers confirmed in summer 2018 that they would not be using the Pavilion for the October weekend following 18 months of negotiations. A statement on Facebook read:-
""Events of the last few days are the end result of an 18 month battle to provide a safe environment for our attendees. Our inability to secure ongoing contracted dates made it impossible to secure a premium line up and provide attendees with confirmed event dates."
How do prices compare?
Tomorrow's Ghosts tickets are priced at £60 for a weekend and £35 for a day, covering entry to Whitby Pavilion and live entertainment.
In contrast, many of the Whitby Goth Weekend events have free entry, including the Bizarre Bazaar and fringe club nights at Abbey Wharf. The beer tasting is £15.