The organizers of a festival in the U.K. are offering their sympathies to eventgoers after their tents ran out of cheese. Ticket buyers for The Big Cheese Festival took to social media to express their disdain over an alleged lack of cheese, saying the March 3 celebration was “rubbish” and “a joke” and claiming that there was “just mud and no cheese.”
Corrinne Lowry, who traveled several hours from Essex to Brighton, says her husband paid £25 ($35) each for their admission. The event, which guaranteed “a plethora of the finest international cheesemakers and mongers showcasing their amazing cheeses,” was initially set to take place at a racecourse but was relocated to Hove Lawns — a large grassy space by the sea that Lowry describes as a “mud bath.”
“There were only three stalls selling cheese and four selling hot cheese-related food,” she told The Daily Meal. “Far from adequate for a cheese festival. There were other stalls selling other things but the fact that these outnumbered the cheese stalls was ridiculous.”
So Lowry and her husband sat in the entertainment marquee, where she hoped to find performances or cooking demonstrations on theme with the event but instead found “just a bad disco.” Disappointed, the couple left within an hour of arriving.
Lowry has asked for compensation but says she has not heard back yet.
Event administrators are saying that the “larger variety of cheese” consumers were promised never showed because vendors ran into tricky weather conditions and “impassible roads” on their journey to the space. Storm Emma, which just rolled through the region, left much of the U.K. covered in heaps of snow and ice.
“Despite this, our cheese traders who were able to attend showed amazing dedication throughout the event, and did not fail to deliver, with food available right to the end,” organizers wrote on Facebook, adding that they were “just as disappointed” with the incident as eventgoers.
Although droves of customers have asked for a refund, they are currently only being offered a 50 percent discount to next year’s event. The Big Cheese Festival’s Facebook page says people have until March 15 to submit complaints or feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Daily Meal has reached out to The Big Cheese Festival for further comment.
But this isn’t the first time an event like this has gone haywire. In December, Britain’s Giant Cheeseboard festival was nicknamed the “Fyre Festival of the U.K.” after photos emerged showing people standing in endless lines for “dry crackers, cubes of cheddar and watered down mulled wine.” The actual Fyre Festival was slated to be a posh music event that promised luxury villas and gourmet meals on a tropical island. Guests stayed in tents and ate prepackaged sandwiches instead.
For more PR disasters, check out these 10 times Applebee’s, Fridays, and 7 other chains really messed up.