Les Vieilles Charrues facing Hellfest: we compared the figures of the two biggest festivals in France - Vieilles Charrues

Les Vieilles Charrues facing Hellfest: we compared the figures of the two biggest festivals in France – Vieilles Charrues



Two rooms two atmospheres. “See you in hell”, invites the Hellfest site. On that of the Plows, we retrace in pink, mauve and mint “30 years of laughter, memories, aperitifs, sleepless nights”. The two meetings have nothing to do in terms of programming, but share their reputation as the biggest festivals in France. Moreover, they are both managed by an association.

The first, born in 2006 in Clisson (44), delights “metal lovers”, while the Plows, which will celebrate their 30th anniversary in Carhaix (29) from July 14 to 17, 2022, rather unite rock lovers, rap, pop and electro. Which brings together the most people? Cost the most? Has the biggest lineup? We compared.

How old are the festival-goers?

According to a study carried out by the Gece polling institute in 2019, at the Carhaisien festival, 53% of the public was under 26 that year. It is therefore the most popular among the youngest while at Hellfest, we were on average 31.7 years old in 2015, according to the same source. A few years earlier, the average age there was 26 years. So we got old, at Hellfest.

Many young people in the audience at Les Vieilles Charrues. In 2019, 63% of festival goers were women. (The Telegram Archives/Jonathan Konitz)

An audience of men or women?

Significant figure: during the 2015 edition, the public of the festival dedicated to metal was composed of 77% of men, again according to Gece. This is a little less than during the 2011 vintage, when this figure climbed to 81%. At Les Charrues, the trend is reversed, but remains less marked: in 2019, 63% of festival-goers were women.

Who has the biggest playing field?

In 1998, the Vieilles Charrues changed dimension by moving to Kerampuilh. In 2017, the festival pushed the walls even further to gain 11,500 m² and increase the size of the site to 104,000 m², or fifteen football pitches. The Hellfest, in Clisson, has, as the Plows would like, its year-round park, which covers 14 hectares.

Carhaix (29) Archives.  The website of "Old plows" seen from the sky on the Kerampuil estate at the gates of the city.  PHOTO LE TELEGRAM DE BREST CLAUDE PRIGENT 07/16/2001
The Vieilles Charrues site is located on the Kerampuilh estate, at the gates of the town of Carhaix, in Finistère. (Archive The Telegram / Claude Prigent)

Who brings in the most people?

This year, Hellfest won the title of the biggest festival in France: 450,000 spectators were expected in Clisson from June 17 to 26 for this double edition. In 2017, over three days, it attracted 180,000 people. Les Charrues, born with only 450 spectators in 1992, brought 270,000 festival-goers to Carhaix in 2019.

Who drinks the most?

The Hellfest should pulverize, with its double edition, a record already beaten in 2019: 440,000 liters of beer sold over four days, or 880,000 pints! Festival-goers also took down 21,000 liters of wine. At Les Charrues, we drink the traditional Coreff from tanks of up to 10,000 litres. On the other hand, the festival keeps the quantity of alcohol sold secret…

PHOTO FRANCOIS DESTOC / LE TELEGRAMME CARHAIX (29) Festival des Vieilles Charrues draft beer
If Coreff does not communicate on the volumes sold at Les Charrues, the festival is the event of the year for the Carhaisienne brewery. (Telegram Archives/François Destoc)

Where are the most volunteers?

This time, the two musical events have one thing in common: around 7,000 volunteers are hard at work to bring their 2022 edition to life. That is almost the number of inhabitants of the towns of Carhaix (7,155) and Clisson (7,435).

Who costs the most?

The huge metal festival does not do half measures, and even less so this year: for its seven days of festivities, the Hellfest has a budget to match the event: 53 M€. In 2019, the figure was €26 million. That year, Les Charrues cost €17 million, 80% funded by festival-goers and 20% by partners.

PHOTO CLAUDE PRIGENT / THE TELEGRAM.  CARHAIX (29): Old Plows Festival 2014 .Stromae .
Already on the Vieilles Charrues stage in 2014, Stromae is back for this anniversary edition. He will be in concert on Thursday July 14, at 10:30 p.m. (Le Télégramme Archives/Claude Prigent)

How many artists?

Record exploded by the appointment of metalheads this year with 362 groups of 29 nationalities scheduled over two weekends, including the mythical Metallica. The festival offers six main stages and a springboard. Les Charrues will welcome, in July, 69 groups or artists on their four stages, Glenmor, Kerouac, Grall and Gwernig.

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