Call for Isle of Wight Festival licence review

Local firm raises complaint

Call for Isle of Wight Festival licence review

Photographer:Mark Holloway

Chris Swindells - 10 October 2012

The application was raised at Monday (October 8) night’s Newport Parish Council meeting and the Council chairman, Cllr Mary Craven, said East Cowes firm GKN had raised some good points.

The festival suffered its worst weather to date back in June of this year as extreme rainfall left much of the car park unstable which caused delays on entry and blocked roads over a large part of the island.

After the chaos of Thursday night and Friday morning the rest of the festival and live music went off without major disruption. Virtual Festivals were at the event and gave it a glowing 9/10 review.

In its application to the Isle of Wight Council to review the licence, GKN said the congestion caused a clear public nuisance.

The application said: "It is accepted the weather conditions were poor. However, this is no justification for the lack of any clear or credible contingency planning by Solo Promoters (and the Isle of Wight Council) to address the bad weather, which caused unprecedented disruption and disorder to the traffic and travel network on the Island.

"The overwhelming consensus of residents and businesses is that the festival does not contribute significantly to the local economy and will constitute an ongoing public nuisance in its current form.

"GKN Aerospace, the residents and businesses of the Isle of Wight are now legitimately concerned that if the licence granted to Solo Promoters is not revoked, or at the very lease reviewed and conditioned, any future festival will continue to cause public nuisance and has real potential to cause crime, disorder and a threat to public safety."

The company claimed emergency services were unable to move freely around the Island, posing a direct threat to public safety, and large numbers of festival-goers were stranded around GKN's premises and the festival site, which could have easily led to disorder.

A consultation on the application for a licence review is open for comment until November 1st. So far Isle of Wight festival organisers, Solo, have declined to comment.


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