Les Vieilles Charrues: peace, music and… telehandlers!

Imagine a large green space overshadowed by a towering stage. Imagine music (preferably rock…) blaring out from huge speakers, while beams of light mix with the intense red glow of the setting sun, illuminating a colourful audience of festival-goers who are dancing and singing along to songs by Neil Young or Joan Baez…

It must be Woodstock in 1969, you say. But no!

We are in the French commune of Carhaix, central Brittany, at the Les Vieilles Charrues Festival. Created in 1992 by a group of high school students as a small fundraising event for local associations, Les Vieilles Charrues is an ongoing success, with audiences growing from 500 people at the inaugural edition to over 280,000 in 2017. It has become one of the major European music events, attracting not only the best emerging French artists, but also international talent such as Neil Young, Joan Baez, Sade, Depeche Mode, Robert Plant, Bruce Springsteen and many others.

Of course, behind such a big event there is great organisation: every year, 5500 volunteers help to set up the huge stage (which is 55 metres long, 17 metres high and weighs 120 tonnes — without including the equipment), as well as all service facilities such as sanitary blocks, car parks, tensile structures, prefabricated buildings, stands, bars, restaurants, engine rooms, lights, amplification and telecommunications.

The volunteers and organisers are effectively supported by a large contingent of DIECI telehandlers supplied by Locarmor, DIECI dealer for Brittany. Icarus, Zeus, Pegasus and the best and most popular DIECI models work in unison for at least two months every year, not only loading, unloading and transporting all kinds of equipment, but also accomplishing delicate and risky tasks such as assembling complex lighting and amplification systems weighing up to several tonnes in the highest parts of the stage, and at the top of service pylons scattered throughout the 4000 m2 concert area.The systems require extremely precise and delicate positioning, which is something our vehicles excel at.

Interest in the festival is so great that the waiting lists for the 2020 edition (which you can’t avoid joining if you want tickets) are already growing long. Fortunately, the Dieci vehicles don’t need to wait in line, as they have become an integral part of the staff!