A RICHMOND festival that has grown from a free local event to a weekend-long experience with national and international acts is giving back to loyal fans.

Richmond Live organisers are encouraging fans to purchase advance weekend tickets online so they can take advantage of free Friday evening entry.

Although still relying upon, and grateful for the support of, local businesses and volunteers the event has grown, making it impossible to continue with the free model for the whole weekend.

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The entry fee has ensured the continued success of the event, however organisers have decided to give something back.

As tickets purchased in advance allow the organisers to plan ahead and negotiate better rates with suppliers, the savings can be passed on to the fans.

Tickets cost £5 on the gate on Friday; £10 on the gate on Saturday; £13 on the gate for the full weekend - but cost £10 for the full weekend with advance online booking.

Richmond Live committee chairman Mike Jinks said: “It’s all about the fans – simple as that. Without them there would be no Richmond Live. We wanted to find a way to give something back for their loyalty and support.

“Passing on the savings we can make having the buying power from advanced sales was just the ticket.”

Advance tickets can be purchased at .richmondlive.org