As this year’s Isle of Wight Festival approaches, Portsmouth Guildhall has announced that its temporary ‘IOW Festival Exhibition 1968, 1969, 1970’ will remain open and free of charge to visitors (with a suggested donation of £1 per person) until the end of September 2018.
The exhibition is the most comprehensive that has ever been produced about the ‘Last Great Event’ and its two precedents, curated by Nigel Grundy, it reflects on the early festivals through a fascinating range of photographs, posters, artefacts, ephemera and memorabilia with captivating images of artists, fans and behind the scenes drama.

Inspired by original Festival Promoter, Ray Foulks, many of the artefacts on display have been provided from his own private collection and are not normally on view to the public. The exhibition also features the late Chris Weston’s stunning panorama taken from Afton Down overlooking the 1970 Festival site. 
The first Isle of Wight Festival took place 31st August – 1st September 1968, at Ford Farm featuring performances from Jefferson Airplane, Arthur Brown, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Fairport Convention and The Pretty Things before becoming renowned as ‘Europe’s Woodstock’ over the next couple of years with iconic performances from The Doors, The Who, Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix.
The IOW Festival Exhibition 1968, 1969, 1970 is part of Portsmouth Guildhall’s permanent Portsmouth Music Experience gallery which celebrates the city’s rich music heritage from the 1950s to the present day. 
Entrance to the Portsmouth Music Experience gallery and IOW Festival Exhibition 1968, 1969, 1970 is free (a suggested donation £1 per person) but please check opening times before your visit as they may be subject to change. See or call the Box Office on 023 9387 0200.