AfrikaBurn 2024: 29 April to 5 May

Stretch Tent Erection Guidelines

Over the past few years, there’s been a trend for large-scale camps to have tent companies arrive early and set up those glorious large stretch tents on the best patches – but the occupants would only rock up much later in the week. Not ayoba: it’s been a point of contention, and we’ve sat and looked at it for 2 years now. It’s safe to say that the days of tent companies arriving early and grabbing all the best real estate in Tankwa Town for people who arrive late in the week are officially over, as we tweak the way we do things to enable radical self-reliance as much as possible.

The following measures have been developed in consultation with our community (from feedback emails, public meetings and concerns raised on social media) as well the tent companies that have attended meetings with our team. The aim of these measures is clarity: we want to protect what AfrikaBurn is meant to be in the world as well as allow for some real world considerations that are requirements of national law.

This policy has been communicated to as many tent companies as we know exist – but if you know of any new ones, do pass this info on, thanks.

There will be a Rendezvous Point

  • A rendezvous point will be allocated by AfrikaBurn on site, which will be included in the 2016 map. This will be where tent companies and their clients are able to meet greet and travel to their respective camping spots to erect their tent/s. It’s up to burners and the tent company to arrange to meet.
  • It’s the responsibility of the tent companies and their clients to ensure they have all the documentation and information relevant to the successful meeting up and erection of tents. (Eg Site Maps, correct contact details). The aim of this measure is to mitigate against the fact that for many years now we have had the scenario where campers have not given adequate information to the tent company and our crew have had to do investigative work during their busiest times to troubleshoot this. Stuff like ‘Do you know where Gary’s camped?’, when there are 10 000 possible Gary’s, is not a good way of doing things.
  • Any tents erected in the wrong spot will be asked to move.
  • It’s up to both the tent erection company and the burner to make sure that they are not settling on space that has been allocated to some other camp or function – as with every year, there will be markers in the ground to indicate allocated placements for Theme Camps, Art and Mutant crews.
  • Remember – there’s a difference between registered theme camps and private camps: registered theme camps have space allocated to them and their space allocations will be marked off by signs nailed into the ground. They will be included in the map.
  • Camp placement will be finalised by mid to end March. Tent companies are obliged to please send us a list to [email protected] and we’ll confirm which are registered Theme Camps and which are not. Tent companies will then need to handle them accordingly.


Tent Erections for registered Theme Camps:

  • All tents being erected for a registered theme camp by a tent company need to be erected and signed off by an engineer, the Sunday before event gates open. Tent companies are to make sure that they have enough rigging, rebar and poles to not have to be delayed by having to go to town to fetch more gear.
  • A minimum of four people per Theme Camp are to be present during the erection of their tent. These four (or more) people need to assist the tent erection crew with erecting their tent. We are looking to the tent erection company to practice the principle of Each One Teach One and teach these folk how to erect and maintain these tents.
  • All tents bigger than 100m2 are to be signed off by a qualified structural engineer on Sunday evening. Engineer sign off forms are to be handed over to the Event Safety Officer (Anne Marie Buys) in the VOC by 20h00 (the VOC is at 8ish). Tent erection companies are to provide their own engineer and to build this into the cost of the tent.
  • For Theme Camps that are truly radically self-reliant and are erecting their own tents, AfrikaBurn will organise an engineer to do the sign-off.
  • All tent erection companies are to provide the AfrikaBurn Theme Camp Wrangler on [email protected] with the following information before arriving on site:
    – Name of Theme Camp
    – Name and contacts of Camp Second
    – Camp Lead name and telephone number & Email
    – Tankwa Town address
    – Tent Size


Expecting any other deliveries?

  • Tent companies are not permitted to set up any added extra items that are ordered with the tent. Eg Lighting, Furniture, flooring, refrigeration etc. This can be delivered, but not set up for the camps. Radical self reliance? That means you need to do the work, not hired help.
  • Tent companies are not permitted to remove rubbish for Theme Camps – this is the responsibility of the Camp Lead to arrange that all participants collectively remove the rubbish generated from their site.
  • Tent companies are expected to schedule, the dismantling of their tents with Theme Camps. At least 4 people are to remain onsite to dismantle the tent once the event is over.

Tent Erections for Private Camps
This year we will allow tent erections for private camps during the event, with the following restrictions:

  • AfrikaBurn will not tolerate tent companies claiming/allocating space and erecting tents for private camps whose crew are not onsite during the erection of their tent. Rangers will be roaming the site during set up, and any unoccupied camps will be given to other campers in the vicinity to occupy or taken down.
  • All private tents to be erected by Wednesday of the event 20h00. No tent companies may erect tents at the event after Wednesday.
  • Radical self-reliance does not mean sitting and having a beer while a hired crew erects you tent for you. Please help us, help burners to become empowered in learning how to rig and maintain a stretch tent. To this end we require a minimum of four people per private camp to be present to help with the erection of their tent. We do not want to see a crew of what are clearly workers, erecting a tent with no participation by the occupants of that tent.

Please bear in mind that AfrikaBurn is not just another event. With our “Radical self reliance” and “Each one teach one” principles it is up to the tent company to communicate that AfrikaBurn REQUIRES that those renting tents for private purposes help with the erection of the tent. Tent companies are to advise tent renters to bring work gloves, a good attitude and be prepared to work. Tent companies should not feel uncomfortable about making the burners work and carry goods. This is not a normal service relationship that exists outside of the burn.

  • No early Access passes will be given to private camps unless they are putting up an artwork or doing any other significant project. Unless camp crew have acquired an early access pass through their contribution to the event other than theme camps, no additional early access passes can be requested from tent companies for private camps.
  • Please take into consideration when picking a location for the tent set up, that the campers would need to ensure there is enough space for their cars to park next to the tent too. Please communicate this to the camp lead onsite. Do not camp on top of others. Do not let the edges of tents bleed into the roads.
  • Tent companies are there to erect and help people erect their tents and it they are not permitted to set up any extra items which are ordered with the tent. Eg Lighting, Furniture, refrigeration etc. This can be delivered, but not set up for the camps. Because “Radical Self Reliance” .
  • Tent companies are expected to schedule the dismantling of their tents with private camps. At least four people from the camp are to remain onsite to dismantle the tent once the event is over.
  • Tent companies must not remove rubbish for private camps. This is a Leave no Trace event, and all rubbish must to leave with the private camp participants.

For more info about suppliers and how they make deliveries to Tankwa Town, read our Supplier Guidelines.

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