The Latitude Festival is an annual music festival that takes place in Henham Park, Southwold, Suffolk, England. It was first held in July 2006. Latitude is said to be more similar to continental European festivals; as well as a comprehensive bill of musicians, bands and artists across four stages - The Obelisk Arena, The BBC Radio 6 Music Stage, The i Arena, and the Huw Stephens edited Lake Stage, the festival comprises elements of theatre, art, comedy, cabaret, poetry, politics, dance and literature.
Latitude 2007 was marred by a spate of thefts, in particular on the night of 12 July. Burglaries from more than 40 tents were subsequently reported to Suffolk Police. Inadequate security, including a decision by festival organisers, Mean Fiddler Music Group, not to engage a police presence on site for the duration of the festival has attracted a degree of criticism. In a statement published on Wikipedia,[unreliable source?] a Mean Fiddler spokesperson said that the incidence of crime at Latitude 2007 represented a reduction pro rata from the previous year's festival. They also stated that the number of security personnel in the campsites would be increased in 2008, and that they will "look further at expanding the CCTV operation". They also intend to "work with Suffolk Constabulary on a more wide reaching crime prevention campaign and to use decoy tents more widely". On the Friday night, security personnel visited campers to ensure they had no valuable property in their tents after 86 thefts on the night before - 21 of these were violent.
The fourth edition took place on 16–19 July 2009. Acts that played include Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Thom Yorke, Grace Jones and Pet Shop Boys as the main headliners, alongside Editors, Doves, and Bat for Lashes. The headliners and ticket details were announced on the Latitude Festival official site on 23 March 2009, at 7pm and sold out near to the event. More acts were confirmed at around 12:00 pm on the following day. These acts had already been previously reported on BBC Radio 1, but denied by festival organisers. Also announced in the press were The Gossip. On 3 April 2009 the official Latitude website confirmed Magazine, Spiritualized and Newton Faulkner to be playing. In June, it was announced that Thom Yorke would play an exclusive solo set as the festival's special guest (a role taken by Joanna Newsom in 2008). BBC Radio covered the 4 day event with live music, comedy, sessions and interviews featured in shows across Radio 2, Radio 4, 6 Music and BBC Suffolk. The total attendance for the weekend was 25,000.
Latitude 2010 (the fifth edition) took place on 15, 16, 17 and 18 July 2010. Initial lineup announcements were made at 7pm on Tuesday 9 March 2010. Capacity for the event was increased substantially to 35,000.
There was a reported gang rape on the first night of the festival which resulted in a heavy police presence for the remainder of the festival, including posters and flyers being handed out.Crystal Castles criticised the rapists during their performance on the Main Stage calling the perpetrators "disgusting". A second rape was reported to have occurred on the second night though it attracted much less publicity than the first. Women were advised against going anywhere on site unaccompanied.
Latitude 2011 (the sixth edition) took place on 14–17 July 2011. The first line up announcements were revealed on 14 March 2011. The three Obelisk headliners were revealed as well as a number of other artists and acts appearing across all stages.
Latitude 2012 (the seventh edition) took place on 12–15 July 2012. The first line up announcements were revealed on 5 March 2012. The three Obelisk headliners were revealed alongside the three Word Arena headliners, as well as a number of other artists and acts appearing across all stages. What was previously known as the 'Sunrise Arena' has been changed to the 'i Arena'.
Latitude 2013 (the eighth edition) took place on 18–21 July. The first acts were revealed on 19 March 2013. What was previously known as the Word Arena had its official name changed to the BBC Radio 6 Music Stage. A brand new music stage has been announced for 2013, The Alcove Stage, which is said to be showcasing upcoming acts with many of the artists coming from the local area.