The organiser of the Covid-hit Womad festival says a government package of support for musical events has come too late to be of any real help.

Ministers today unveiled a £750 million insurance scheme which will start next month to help give festival organisers greater certainty.

Parts of the industry have welcomed the move, which is being spearheaded by Chancellor Rishi Sunak.

Womad founder Peter Gabriel called the festival scheduled for Charlton Park near Malmesbury off for the second year running in June, directly blaming lack of government support for music events.

Last night festival director Chris Smith said the help was of little use to Womad or other events that have already been called off.

He told the Guardian: “What can you say that’s not offensive?”

“Anything to support the industry going forward is a positive, but it has come too late for so many organisations like ours who have lost the summer and need not have done. It is just another blow really that more could have been done.”

The new scheme – a partnership with insurers Lloyd’s – aims to fill a gap left by commercial insurers for Covid-related cancellations.

A Treasury statement said: “This scheme will support live events across the UK that are open to the general public. It will cover costs incurred in the event of cancellation due to the event being legally unable to happen due to government Covid restrictions.”

UK Music chief executive Jamie Njoku-Goodwin, gave the idea a guarded welcome.

“The inability to obtain insurance has already caused many cancellations this summer – these have been devastating for the entire music industry and there were fears that without action we would have seen major cancellations continuing well into next year too.”