NOEA’s CEO Susan Tanner discusses the impact of Glastonbury’s Michael Eavis.


On the front page of this month’s Access is none other than industry icon Michael Eavis, an industry legend and a fan of the National Outdoor Events Association.

Michael was the recipient of the first ever ‘i’ award at our 2017 NOEA Awards.

The ‘i’ award was purposefully created to be ambiguous. There are so many emotive words that begin with ‘i’ – inspirational, iconic, and incredible – all of which can be applied to Michael, and his towering career in the events industry.

I’ve met Michael on several occasions, and have enjoyed his company both personally and professionally; he remains a humble, happy and interesting man, and he very quickly won over many of the other guests at the NOEA Awards, dressed as he was in Black Tie from the waist up, and shorts and wellies from the waist down.

Seeing him on the cover of this month’s edition reminds me of both how great a man Michael is, but also how he represents so many other great people, and businesses, that go above and beyond for the industry.

It would be remiss of me not to mention NOEA’s own Futures Supporters as among this kind, starting with GL events UK, and also including the great people at A.C.T National Ltd, Arnold Clarke and most recently SeeTickets. I should also give special mention to the many council members that have served NOEA over our now 40-year history.

These people, and the businesses that support them, take the decision to go beyond the promotion of just their own businesses but to invest further time and money in the betterment of the industry that they work in.

Without their time, expertise and investment NOEA couldn’t do what it sets out to do; to regulate, reflect and represent the best of the industry and to make steps to safeguard its future, so others can prosper in it.

Like Michael, these people are trying to do their own little bit to present this industry at its very best and become an icon of all the good it can be.

They don’t always succeed, and few can really claim to have come near to Michael’s own unique impact on the world of events, but they continue to make efforts, and make a difference.

One of the things that I also feel is a characteristic unusually common amongst our industry is the humility of how we do things. When speaking to Michael he’s incredibly self effacing, almost embarrassed about his own success.

Equally, when I ask our supporters or many of our own volunteers, the answer is the same as an event organiser who receives positive feedback from his audiences; ‘it’s just what we do’ they say. Thank god it is, without them this industry would be all the poorer.