Following discussions with Nottinghamshire County Council, the RSPB team which manages the forest announced the news today, saying there was little option given the uncertainty of the current lock down situation and the need to maintain the welfare of everyone involved in the event.
Gemma Howarth, senior site manager at Sherwood said: “Initially when the lock down period began, August felt a long way away and we were determined to continue planning as normal for as long as possible. But in light of the ongoing Covid-19 situation and for the safety and well-being of all of our staff, volunteers, performers, traders and visitors, we feel that cancelling this year’s festival is the responsible thing to do.
“We know that everyone will be as disappointed about this as we are, but I know my team is already looking forward to making next year’s festival an event to remember!
“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank visitors for the fantastic support they consistently show this event, which is the most- anticipated on the Sherwood calendar, and for their continued support at this difficult time. We look forward to being able to welcome visitors here again once it is safe and right to do so.”
Leader of Nottinghamshire County Council, Councillor Kay Cutts said: “We’re very disappointed that we’ve had to cancel one of the best loved Festivals in Nottinghamshire. In its 36th year history this is the first time the Robin Hood Festival has not gone ahead. This is not a decision that we’ve made lightly. However due to the continuing uncertainty caused by the Coronavirus crisis, and for the safety of all those involved in planning and rehearsing for the event, it’s only right that we make this decision now.
“We know that a lot of people will be saddened by this news, but please be reassured that the Festival will be back next year. Expect it to be bigger, brighter and bolder than ever before – a true celebration of our favourite icon Robin Hood, his Forest and the legends of Sherwood.”
The reserve’s facilities are currently closed due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis and in line with the Government’s guidelines on social distancing.