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Event celebrating Led Zeppelin’s John Bonham cancelled in his home town

John Bonham
(Image credit: Dick Barnatt/Redferns - Getty)

A two-day music festival which was set up to celebrate the life and work of late Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham has been cancelled.

John Bonham A Celebration II was due to take place in September in Bonham’s home town of Redditch, but the plug has been pulled by organisers who say “they were not able to deliver the event to a standard that would do justice to the town's most famous musical son.”

Organisers report they had hoped to build on the success of last year’s festival, which coincided with the unveiling of a Bonham statue by British sculptor Mark Richards, but the decision to cancel was taken after consultation with Bonham's sister Debbie.

Promoter Ros Sidaway says: “We can only apologise to people who have been inconvenienced and were looking forward to what promised to be another memorable event. 

“I’m sure we have made the right decision in cancelling this year with a view to providing something even better in future. We were doing this in the name of one of the all-time greats of rock music and it would be wrong to deliver anything less than the best.”

Sidaway adds: “John's family recognise this and we wouldn't want to embarrass them or sell his memory short in any way. It's encouraging that we know people are prepared to travel from all over the world to honour his memory in his hometown.”

Last year’s event raised £23,000 for the Teenage Cancer Trust, with organisers now looking to 2020 to stage a special event on what will be the 40th anniversary of Bonham’s death.

It was revealed last month that a documentary about Led Zeppelin was in the works. It’ll feature new interviews with Robert Plant, Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones, while archived interviews with Bonham will also be included