English Heritage have announced that there will be no summer concerts at Kenwood House this year.
The open-air events at the Hampstead Heath attraction have been one of the highlights of the London summer for 60 years. The shows, originally classical but lately featuring the likes of Tom Jones, Blondie and Jools Holland, attract thousands and provide an important source of income for the former stately home.
But the organisers want to 'do a Glasto' in 2012 and take a break. The pause comes as a 10-year contract between English Heritage and event managers IMG reaches its natural end. The two organisations were unable to agree terms for a renewal. Rather than find a new contract partner, and with the nearby Grade I listed building about to embark on a renovation programme, English Heritage decided to call a hiatus. It's not given as a reason, but we suspect competition with countless other outdoor events in this Olympic year might be another factor. A spokesperson for English Heritage said that this is a "good time to pause and see if the concerts can be done differently in 2013 and beyond."
The shows were last cancelled in 2007, when grumbles from locals forced a rethink.
Image by Laura Nolte in the Londonist Flickr pool.