IT WAS bye bye Balado yesterday, as T in the Park said a fond farewell to the place it has called home for the past 18 years.
Despite dire predictions of a washout yesterday, the skies cleared and the campsite dried up to ensure that the 85,000 revellers enjoyed a sunny conclusion to the latest chapter in the festival’s history.
The Arctic Monkeys became the last ever act to headline the main stage at Balado in Kinross-shire last night.
The three-day event has seen an impromptu appearance from Hollywood star Will Smith, who joined Calvin Harris on stage on Saturday night.
Tens of thousands of fans danced through the rain as the DJ brought the party to a close with a set packed full of hits including Feel So Close, I Need Your Love and Bounce.
Paul Weller, Jake Bugg, Kaiser Chiefs, Bastille and Franz Ferdinand delighted audiences yesterday with Kodaline, Disclosure, Tinie Tempah, Sam Smith and Example also helping bring the curtain down on Balado.
Amanda Brown, 38, from Edinburgh, who attended the first T in the Park at Strathclyde Park in 1994, said it had been a good send-off. “It’s been a brilliant weekend, even with the rain yesterday,” she said. “I’ve had a fantastic time – Pharrell was fantastic, so was Paolo and Calvin Harris and we’re really looking forward to the Arctic Monkeys.
“I’m just so glad that the sun came out today, though, it’s a fitting way to end its time here.”
Darren Martin, 22, from Glasgow, who has been to the festival many times, said: “At the end of the day it’s just a field with grass and next year will be another field but it’s still going to be just as massive.”
Festival favourites Kaiser Chiefs paid tribute to the site yesterday. Dedicating their single Coming Home, singer Ricky Wilson said: “We are honoured to play the last time T in the Park will be here. Although it is an ending, but it’s also a beginning.”
Scots electronica outfit Chvrches had a memorable festival. Having played in the King Tut’s Tent on Friday, they then gave an impromptu set in the BBC Introducing tent on Saturday, before playing the Radio One stage yesterday when London Grammar dropped out at the last minute.
It was also a big moment for Fife indy pop group The Moon Kids, as it was their first festival performance, in front of a packed tent in the T Break stage.
Singer David Barr said: “I’ve been coming since the first Balado festival in 1997, so to play here is pretty special. It’s the end of an era, but we had an amazing reception.”
Paolo Nutini played the main stage before the headline set from Harris on Saturday night with a playlist which included hits Candy, Pencil Full Of Lead and Jenny Don’t Be Hasty before closing with Last Request.
The singer was back yesterday mixing with the crowds and posing for photos with his face painted.
Speaking before his performance yesterday, Jake Bugg said: “It’s a great festival, it’s always set up very nice, the backstage area is really cool, the gigs are always good, and the people are up for it – they seem to love the music and that’s amazing.”
Police Scotland reported crime levels were lower than last year, with a total of 38 arrests compared to 59 in 2013.
Medics said 685 people had been through the hospital tent, mostly for minor ailments.