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Radio 1's Big Weekend

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Big Weekend
Official logo for Radio 1's Big Weekend
Location(s) United Kingdom (touring)
Years active 2003 - present
Date(s) varies
Genre Popular Music

Radio 1's Big Weekend (previously known as One Big Weekend) is a music festival run by BBC Radio 1. It is held once or twice or year, in a different location within the United Kingdom each time. It is the biggest free live music event in the UK and always includes a host of new artists.

The festival was a spin-off of Radio 1's touring summer roadshow, "One Big Sunday", where every Sunday during July and August, a different town would host the roadshow, usually next to a beach or in a large park. These were also free, but non-ticketed. A show in Falkirk in 1999 attracted in excess of 500,000 people, 450,000 above the expected amount. People eventually had to be turned away.

Originally the Saturday was dedicated to dance music and the Sunday to bands but in since 2005 the dance day has been replaced by a second day of bands. In 2005 the dance music took place on a second stage on the Saturday only and in 2006 it took place off site at a club on the Saturday night.


Venue Date Website
Manchester, England 3 - 4 May 2003
(3rd May cancelled due to waterlogged venue)
Cardiff, Wales 13 - 14 September 2003 link
Derry, Northern Ireland 24 - 25 April 2004 link
Perry Park, Birmingham, England 18 - 19 September 2004 link
Penshaw Monument, Herrington Park, Sunderland, England 7 - 8 May 2005 link
Camperdown Park, Dundee, Scotland 13 - 14 May 2006 link
Moor Park, Preston, Lancashire, England 19 - 20 May 2007 link
Botanic Gardens, Belfast, Northern Ireland 17 - 18 May 2008



Tickets are free and are obtained through a lottery. People wishing to go register on the BBC website and pairs of tickets are then given out. Despite the tickets being free, some were sold on eBay and fetched prices of around £50-£400.

98% of tickets are given to people in the BBC Nations and Regions of where the show is being held. The other 2% are handed to others living across the United Kingdom.

In 2007, for the first time in the history of the event, all tickets had barcodes and were scanned on arrival at the park. The barcodes contained information such as name and address of the winner of the tickets. Having the barcodes meant that Radio 1 could cancel lost or stolen tickets and issue new ones to those affected. In an effort to stop people buying tickets from eBay or through other mediums, the public was told they would be asked to prove their home address if their tickets were thought to be suspect. However, the BBC decided to scrap this idea on the day as they thought it would cause angry scenes if people were to be turned away.

At the close of entry ( May 8), over 450,000 people registered for a chance to get tickets for the 2007 festival.

On Tuesday May 8th on The Chris Moyles Show, Chris announced that a further 5,000 tickets will be available taking the total for both days being 35,000.


On Saturday 19th May and Sunday 20th May, Radio 1's Big Weekend was held in Moor Park in Preston and the line up was as follows:


  • Saturday 19th May
    • Main Stage
      • Scissor Sisters
      • Razorlight
      • Kasabian
      • The Fratellis
      • The Fray
      • Natasha Bedingfield
      • The Twang
      • Jamie T
    • In New Music We Trust
      • Groove Armada
      • Gossip
      • LCD Soundsystem
      • CSS
      • Biffy Clyro
      • Cold War Kids
      • The Pigeon Detectives
    • Outdoor Arena
      • Westwood
      • Mista Jam
      • Seamus Haji
      • Meck
      • Groove Armada - DJ Set
      • Judge Jules
      • Tim Deluxe vs The Audio Bullys
      • Simian Mobile Disco
      • Annie Mac

  • Sunday 20th May
    • Main Stage
      • Kaiser Chiefs
      • Stereophonics
      • Mika
      • The View
      • Rihanna
      • Mark Ronson
      • Just Jack
      • Calvin Harris
    • In New Music We Trust Stage
      • Bloc Party
      • Maxïmo Park
      • Klaxons
      • Dizzee Rascal
      • Get Cape Wear Cape Fly
      • The Enemy
      • CSS
      • M.I.A
    • Outdoor Arena
      • Bobby & Nihal
      • Rob Da Bank
      • Zane Lowe & Mark Ronson
      • Klaxons - DJ Set
      • Pete Tong & Vernon
      • David Guetta
      • Trophy Twins
      • Fergie
      • Tylor Leigh
      • Dave Pearce


In 2006, the Big Weekend was held in Camperdown Park, Dundee on the 13th and 14th May 2006 and featured artists which included:

  • 13 May 2006
    • Main Stage:
      • Paolo Nutini
      • Corinne Bailey Rae
      • Gnarls Barkley
      • Orson
      • Razorlight
      • Muse
      • The Streets
      • Snow Patrol
      • Mylo
    • In New Music We Trust Stage
      • The Fratellis
      • Mystery Jets
      • Boy Kill Boy
      • Dirty Pretty Things
      • Bloc Party
      • Primal Scream
  • 14 May 2006
    • Main Stage
      • The Feeling
      • The Ordinary Boys
      • Sugababes
      • Feeder
      • Editors
      • P!nk
      • Keane
      • Franz Ferdinand (Unannounced Surprise Guests)
    • In New Music We Trust Stage
      • The View
      • Hot Chip
      • We Are Scientists
      • Yeah Yeah Yeahs
      • The Kooks
      • The Zutons

Many of the BBC Radio 1 DJ's including Pete Tong, Tim Westwood and Chris Moyles attended too, and held a number of competitions so that people could win tickets. In addition, Radio 1 also created a virtual festival experience in the virtual reality application Second Life. Avatars on the BBC Radio 1 islands could watch the event on live screens while the audience could see their virtual counterparts on massive stage side screens at the real event in Dundee. The event was hailed as the first ever festival with a professional line-up to take place in a virtual universe. .

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