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Sugababes on Barclaycard Amp Stage 2023

Barclaycard withdraw from Download, Latitude, Bestival and Isle of Wight festivals after mass artist boycotts

14 June 2024, 15:54 | Written by Tyler Damara Kelly

Barclaycard have exited several high profile music festivals after sustained pressure from musicians and industry professionals over the bank’s financial ties to the Israeli military.

The Great Escape, which took place in Brighton from 15-18 May, lost over a third of its total lineup due to 161 artist walkouts in solidarity after voicing concern over Barclays’ involvement in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza. So far, 17 acts have withdrawn from upcoming appearances at Latitude festival, due to go ahead 25-27 July.

Bands Boycott Barclays, a collective of over 1,000 musicians and industry professionals who have put pressure on festivals to cut ties with the bank, have declared this as “a victory for ethical funding in music festivals and a victory for the Palestinian-led global BDS movement.”

A spokesperson from Palestine Solidarity Campaign said: “This is testament to the hundreds of artists who spoke out and withdrew from Barclays sponsored events, refusing to participate in Barclays' attempts to hide from accountability over its financing of arms companies supplying Israel's genocide."

A spokesperson for Art Against the Arms Trade, who are calling on all UK festivals to sever ties with Barclays, said: “This is a massive victory for our movement and shows the incredible power we have if we stand together against the profiteers of war. This sends a strong message to other festival organisers around the world: if they don’t stand on the side of humanity and cut ties with the war machine, we will continue to organise in solidarity with the Palestinian people — and we will win.”

Barclays have not shared a full statement on the withdrawal.

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