Rock Werchter cancelled as Belgium extends ban on mass gatherings

Rock Werchter has become the latest major festival to be cancelled after Belgium announced new social restrictions in order to curb the coronavirus outbreak.

Belgium extended its COVID-19-enforced lockdown until May 3 earlier today (April 15). While some measures have been relaxed, however, all mass gatherings are now banned nationwide until August 31.

Rock Werchter, which was to due begin on July 2, has since issued a statement to confirm their 2020 event will no longer take place as a result. “It will be a summer without Rock Werchter,” their update began.

Posted by Rock Werchter on Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Organisers went on to say that they “fully understand the reasons why” the government has taken such action, adding: “The safety of the fans, artists and their crew, festival staff, volunteers and local residents is always our top priority.

“Still, we are devastated. We extend our sincere apologies to everyone who was looking forward to [the festival] as much as we were. However, there are more important things in life right now.”

Rock Werchter has told 2020 ticketholders that they will be providing further information in the next “few days”. You can see the full statement above.

This year’s event was due to feature sets from the likes of Liam Gallagher, The StrokesHaim, PlaceboMichael KiwanukaKacey MusgravesJorja SmithBrittany HowardThe Big Moon and more across the weekend.

While Spain hasn’t extended its ban on mass gathering at present, Barcelona’s Primavera Sound recently confirmed their rescheduled dates of August 26-30. This year’s Reading & Leeds festivals are also set to take place that same weekend.

Last month, R&L organisers assured ticketholders that their duel event would still be going ahead as planned. “The safety and health of all staff and visitors is our main priority and we are implementing recommendations and instructions appropriately,” they explained.