T in the Park festival is a major Scottish music festival that has been held annually since 1994. It is named after its main sponsor, the brewing company Tennents. The event was originally held at Strathclyde Park, Lanarkshire but was held at the disused Balado airfield, Kinross-shire from 1997 to 2014. In 2015 the festival was held at Strathallan Castle, Strathallan, Perthshire. This looks set to be the home of T in the Park for years to come. Originally a two-day event, the festival became a three-day event in 2007. Promoted by DF Concerts, the event attracts up to 255,000 people, along with 70,000 campers.
The festival was founded in 1994 as part of a joint venture between DF Concerts and Tennent's Lager with some help from Irish promotions company MCD Productions. Current festival director Geoff Ellis was involved from the start. Ellis came to Scotland in 1992 to manage King Tut's Wah Wah Hut in Glasgow. He organised the first T in the Park festival in 1994 with a smattering of bands playing to 17,000 people at its original site at Strathclyde Park, Lanarkshire. The festival was held there for three years until 1997, where it was held at the disused Balado airfield, Kinross-shire. After moving to Balado the festival grew larger and by 2003, the festival was attracting up to 255,000 people; 110,000 over the weekend.
The festival was originally a two-day event until 2007, when the Friday became a mainstay event for live music. However, the 2007 festival was sullied for many festival-goers who missed acts on the Friday due to huge traffic jams of 10 miles on the A91 and A977 leading to Kinross. To prevent a repeat of the traffic chaos, in 2008 organisers allowed a limited number of campers to pitch up on the Thursday in order to cut the number of cars on the roads on the Friday. By extending the festival over a full three days, it began to grow rapidly, becoming the second-largest greenfield festival in the United Kingdom, and the fifth-largest in the world in terms of attendance, with over 85,000 people on site everyday.
As of 2013, it attracted up to 255,000 people over three days, drawing fans from across Britain and Europe. According to DF Concerts, 20% of the crowd is made up of visitors from outside Scotland, with about 2% attending from overseas. In recent years, the festival has shared much of its line-up with Oxegen, a festival that takes place on the same weekend in County Kildare, Ireland. Acts usually play T in the Park one day and Oxegen the next, or vice versa. In an attempt to boost ticket sales, the 2014 festival saw an extension of the acts' duration on stage. On the Friday, the acts were scheduled to start around lunchtime as opposed to 5 pm; and the Saturday headliners to finish at 1 am.
The 2014 festival was the last to take place at the Balado site. Despite having run on the same site since 1997, safety concerns were expressed about the Forties Pipeline, which runs directly underneath the former Balado airfield.
In 2015 the festival moved 20 miles to the Strathallan Castle Estate in the neighbouring county of Perthshire.
Tennents Lager is brewed just 36 hours before T in the Park at the Wellpark Brewery in Glasgow, 44 miles from Balado. Nearly all the lager is brewed specifically for the weekend. More than 3 million pints of lager have been consumed at the festival since 1994.
An innovative bar-cup recycling scheme was introduced in 2006 paying a 10p deposit on every empty pint container brought back to a designated recycling point.
The first T in the Park was held on Saturday 30 July - Sunday 31 July 1994 at Strathclyde Country park. The site had a capacity for 17,000 people on each of the two days, with just 2000 choosing to camp.
The Caledonia Stage, was introduced to showcase up and coming new bands. A band called Glass Onion played over the weekend who would later be better known as Travis.
Was held on Saturday 5 August - Sunday 6 August 1995 at Strathclyde Country park. This was the first year there was a sell out on one of the days. Noel Gallagher joined Paul Weller on stage, while Kermit from the Black Grapes' had broken his ankle earlier in the day but refused to go to hospital instead performed with the rest of the band whilst sitting down on the stage.
The Dance Tent was introduced this year, but no official line was used, it became the Slam Tent in 1997.
Was held on Saturday 13 July - Sunday 14 July 1996, and was the last time at Strathclyde Country park. The Saturday was a sell out for the first time in advance. Radiohead closed the Main Stage on Saturday night and Pulp closing on the Sunday. This was also the year that Keanu Reeves arrived on a shuttle bus to play the festival with his band Dogstar, and Joe Strummer busked in the campsite
Caledonia Stage was renamed the T Break, where unsigned acts from across Scotland are given a platform to showcase their music at T in the Park. Each year, a panel made up of music industry experts hand-picked 16 artists from over a thousand entries to platform.
In 1997, T in the Park moved from Strathclyde Park to its home for the next 17 years, Balado near Kinross, on a disused Airfield, and was held on Saturday 12 July – Sunday 13 July 1997. This was The Slam Tent’s first year, while The campsite grown to over 25,000.
This was held on Saturday 8 and Sunday 9 July 2000, with 50,000 people attending. It was Travis' first appearance, as an unsigned band closed the Main Stage. It was All Saints' last Scottish appearance.
A week prior to the event an accident happened at Roskilde Festival where nine people died. Following the incident security arrangements were reviewed while making sure the relevant safety procedures were in place to ensure a failsafe.
The 2004 edition attracted approximately 60,000 people on both the Saturday and Sunday. The two biggest stages being the Main Stage and the NME Stage, along with four tents which included the Slam Tent and the King Tut's Tent.
Tickets for the 2005 event sold out in record time, just four days after going on sale, five months in advance of the festival. The event saw around 69,000 people a day watching more than 170 bands over 10 stages. It was named best festival in that year's UK Festival Awards, beating the Glastonbury Festival for the first time.
Tickets for the 2006 festival went on sale at 9am on 17 February 2006. The event sold out in under an hour, a record time for the festival. An additional 12,000 day tickets were placed on sale on 3 June 2006, which sold out in ten minutes. Approximately 69,000 tickets were sold for each day. Following the sellout, weekend camping tickets appeared on internet auction sites for as much as £700.
The 2007 festival took place on the 6, 7 and 8 July 2007 - the first time the festival had been held over three days. The first 35,000 tickets went on sale shortly after the 2006 festival and were sold within 70 minutes. The final batch of tickets, released on 9 March, sold out in less than 20 minutes. The event was overshadowed by traffic chaos on the A91 due to the closure of the main car park following heavy rain.
The 2009 festival took place over three days between the 10 and 12 July, with over 180 acts performing to a crowd of 85,000 people. As with the 2008 festival, the campsite opened on the Thursday evening to prevent traffic queues forming on the Friday. The first batch of "early bird" tickets sold out in ten hours on 15 July 2008 and on 27 February 2009, NME announced that camping tickets for the event had already sold out.
The 2011 festival took place between 7–11 July 2011. Arctic Monkeys, Coldplay, Foo Fighters and Beyoncé were the headliners for the weekend. It is the eighteenth festival to take place. The Strokes played on the Radio 1 NME stage on the Saturday. Blink-182 cancelled as they were unable to produce their new album in time for their European tour. On 5 May, Beyoncé was added to the line-up, and played on Saturday the 9th. Other artists such as Deadmau5 and Pendulum played at T in the Park 2011.
The 2012 festival took place between 6–8 July 2012. As usual presale tickets went on sale shortly after the conclusion of the 2011 event, on 12 July 2011, with another allocation of "early bird" tickets going on sale to the general public two days later, on 14 July 2011. The Stone Roses were announced as the first headline act on 8 November, three weeks before the second release tickets went on sale. On 30 November, Vodafone customers who were signed up to the "Vodafone VIP" site were granted access to a pre-sale. The next day, T-Lady subscribers and past festival goers were also given access to the pre-sale. The second release tickets, equivalent to half of the venues capacity, went on sale to the general public on 2 December at 9am, hours later allocation was exhausted.  Festival director, Geoff Ellis said that he was "delighted by the response from fans" and also noted that he "can’t wait to see everyone at Balado next year."
T in the Park was granted a late music license for 2014 which allows the music to continue until 1am instead of 12am like previous years. Music on Friday also started earlier this year, with the arena opening at lunch time instead of the regular 5pm start.