28 Jan 2023

Auckland flooding: Heartache as long weekend events axed

4:29 pm on 28 January 2023
Patrons queue in the sun at the entrance to the Laneway Festival this afternoon.

The banner greeting fans at a previous Laneway Festival. Photo: RNZ / Cole Eastham-Farrelly

Monday's Laneway Festival in Auckland has been cancelled, joining a long list of events hit by record rainfall.

The cancellation of the music festival - which included artists like Haim and Phoebe Bridgers - follows the cancellation of both of Elton John's Auckland shows this weekend.

The Laneway organisers said they had to make the "heartbreaking" decision to cancel the show due to the unprecedented weather event in Auckland.

"We were so excited to deliver this show to our biggest crowd ever in New Zealand. Our team has been working around the clock to do everything they can to salvage the site, but the damage and disruption caused by the weather has meant that it is no longer safe to proceed."

Ticket holders will be refunded amid the organisers' promise on Twitter: "We'll be back in 2024."

Organisers of Sunday's Gardens Music Festival have confirmed they will be ditching the waterlogged Auckland Domain, and will head indoors to Spark Arena. Two of the lineup - John Morales and MissB - won't be performing, but Set Mo, LP Giobbi, Peking Duk and headliner Fatboy Slim are already in the country, so are still set to perform.

INDIO, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 24: Fatboy Slim performs onstage at the YumaTent at the 2022 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival on April 24, 2022 in Indio, California.   Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for Coachella/AFP (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

Fatboy Slim is due to perform in Auckland on Sunday but his Napier concert has been cancelled. Photo: AFP

Opera in the Park at Glover Park, St Heliers, which was due to be held today, has been postponed until 4 March due to the weather.

The Festival One event at Kaipara has been cancelled, with the announcement made on the festival's Facebook page.

"I'm crying as I write this. My heart is breaking. You all know what is happening around the upper North Island. We had pretty epic weather overnight. Rain, as they say, of 'biblical proportions'," organiser G and the management team wrote in their post.

However, the Breakers NBL match against Melbourne at Spark Arena is going ahead.

Events in other parts of the North Island have also been affected.

The Fatboy Slim concert in Napier tonight has been cancelled due to bad weather.

Tauranga's two-day One Love festival has been canned for the first time in its history.

The reggae festival was due to be held at the Tauranga Domain today and Sunday. Acts included UB40, Sons of Zion and Katchafire.

The weather has also hit the Black Sticks versus Spain series in Tauranga. The first match was due to happen this afternoon but has been cancelled. A decision will be made later on the second match due to be played in Tauranga on Sunday.

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