Article by Matthew Porter: A music festival featuring international stars and attracting as many as 20,000 visitors a day is expected to come to Billericay next year.
Organisers have asked Basildon Council for permission to play live music at Barleylands Farm until 10.30pm, and sell alcohol until 2am over the May Day weekend.
The Uprising Music Festival, which would offer a campsite for revellers, could be staged at the popular family attraction from Friday, April 29, until Sunday, May 1.
It is expected to feature musicians from the eighties, including Sister Sledge and Odyssey.
The proposals have proved controversial, with objections from councillors, neighbours, and police.
Members of Basildon Council's licensing committee will decide on the application for live music, alcohol, and entertainment next Thursday.
Richard Moore, Tory councillor responsible for planning, who represents Burstead ward, said:
[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Richard Moore"]I am concerned with an event of potentially 20,000 people. My concerns are potential traffic problems on a narrow road, and noise issues for bands. If this is going to be like Chelmsford’s V Festival then I have great reservations about security and the serving of alcohol. I cannot support the application without a lot more detail from the organisers.[/quote]
In an email sent to planning officers, which has been seen by the Echo, Basildon Council's environmental health boss, Tony Meech, said he did not believe organisers have planned sufficiently for the event.
[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Tony Meech"]I do not have confidence they have demonstrated a consideration of the likely risks posed and associated with such an event.[/quote]
An Essex Police consultation found planning for the event was “too generic” and “not site specific."
Officers asked for extra conditions to be imposed before a licence is granted.
Organisers have already set up a website for the festival, featuring a countdown timer to the proposed date. It promises comedy, an open air cinema, and a children’s area.
Article by Matthew Porter, The Echo