THE organisers of the highly acclaimed Millport Country Music festival say they will make a decision in the spring on this year's festival.

Organiser Gavin Chittick says if it is possible to provide a safe and financially secure festival 'then it will happen',

However the health and safety of the island population will be at the forefront of any decision, Gavin told the News.

With the Largs Viking Festival having announced its intention to go ahead in 2021, the Millport organisers say their event could be streamlined to one day - with everything outside.

Gavin said: "Our intention is that we would still like to do something, but to what extent we still do not know.

"We don't want to go through a similar situation like last year where we carried out a huge amount of work to sign up headline acts only to have to cancel.

"As yet we still don't know what compromises would have to be made; there are a number of factors from what kind of capacity we can have, to the number of artists who are able to travel to what resources would be available to them in terms of facilities and transport.

"We also have a situation where some American artistes are not prepared to commit - many are talking about not travelling at all in 2021.

"First and foremost we have an island which has enormous health sensitivities.

"There are a number of technical issues and insurance has become a big issue with premiums having gone through the roof for fairly obvious reasons."

Fortunately Millport's much-loved festival was not hit financially by last year's call-off to the same extent as other festivals.

Gavin explained: "We were pretty cautious and pulled the event before tickets went on sale.

"Our resources are very limited in terms of profitability so we have to make the same judgements to going forward but with much more stringent parameters.

"It may well be that instead of a three day festival it will be one day - and it may be fully outdoor at our 'Nashville' venue with social distancing more manageable.

"One thing is that we don't want to anything that people feel is not right for the island."

Gavin says that if the high quality bill can't be maintained then the event will be called off.

He added: "The live music industry is on it knees.

"We are very reliant on the restrictions lessening quick quickly in the spring time for the event to happen and for us to have the confidence we can put it all together. The likes of whether Glastonbury will go ahead will be a big indicator for other events.

"It is still way too early for us to decide - if we can make something happen that keeps the bar high, we will.

"The initial thought was that we could just put the event back to the this year and everything would be fine, but that idea has already been firmly blown out the water."