The talent buyer for the festival has since issued an apology in which she explained, “I fully support everyone in the LGBTQI+ community and am always happy to learn more about how to be a better ally.”
Bloodstock Booker “Steps Back” From the Festival Following Backlash for Transphobic Comments
Vicky Hungerford, one of the main talent bookers for the major U.K. extreme metal festival Bloodstock, will be taking a “step back” from her duties according to a statement released by the festival. Hungerford came under intense fire for transphobic comments she made on social media mocking the use of pronouns in email signatures. The practice is particularly common in the transgender and nonbinary communities, but growing in popularity amongst cisgender people as a show of solidarity with the trans community.
First published on Thursday October 14 on Twitter and then reposted on various platforms, the new deleted Tweet stated, “If you’re going to start putting pro nouns [sic] on your email so I can refer to you as he/him she or her I’m binning your emails …”.
The tweet immediately drew condemnation across the metal community. Many noted the hypocrisy of Bloodstock’s close association to the Sophie Lancaster Foundation, an organization dedicated to “stamp[ing] out prejudice, hatred and intolerance everywhere”.
Hungerford soon deleted the tweet and offered multiple statements, first saying “Well that escalated quickly !!!”, before making her first apology: “So it appears my last tweet offended people and that was NOT my intention, I deleted my tweet as some people were upset and I was NEVER intending to upset anyone! If you were offended by my tweet then I do apologise!”
She later followed up with another apology, stating: “I fully support everyone in the LGBTQI+ community and am always happy to learn more about how to be a better ally; I am genuinely upset I have caused upset to these very people today… I only wish I could take back my ill thought-out comment.”
However, the sincerity of her remorse was called into question after the emergence of more transphobic social media posts by Hungerford. These included a 2018 post in which Hungerford whines about “gender neutral bullshit” and asserts that “you can identify with whatever the fuck you think you are it still doesn’t mean you are one.”
In protest, the Bloodstock Twitch team halted all streaming and one entertainment manager resigned from his job. Additionally, Dr. Sylvia Lancaster, CEO of the Sophie Lancaster Foundation and the mother of Sophie Lancaster, has released a statement condemning Hungerford’s comments, vowing to “[meet] with Bloodstock to talk about our future relationship.”
Now, Bloodstock’s organizers have announced that “For now, Vicky has taken a step back from Bloodstock Festival effective immediately, and will be taking the time to properly educate herself for a better understanding.”
You can read both Dr. Lancaster’s full statement and Bloodstock’s full statements below: