Who we are and what we want
We are the Friends of Finsbury Park and we are fundraising for our legal costs for our application to review the Premises Licence (No. LN/000012182) issued to Live Nation (Music) UK Ltd for Wireless Festival and other events in Finsbury Park.
Live Nation (Music) UK Ltd puts on a number of events in Finsbury Park including Wireless. Live Nation holds a Premises Licence from Haringey Council that allows them to do this. These events have left Finsbury Park in a very poor condition and caused misery to residents.
The Friends of Finsbury Park are therefore applying to Haringey Council to revoke the Premises Licence on the basis that the Live Nation events have caused very serious disturbance amounting to a public nuisance and have given rise to crime and disorder. If the Licence is revoked, Live Nation will no longer be able to hold their events in Finsbury Park. If the Licence is not revoked but stringent conditions imposed, then Wireless may not be able to be held at Finsbury Park and Live Nation will be forced to find a proper and appropriate venue for this festival.
Wireless Festival is too big for Finsbury Park. It is a massive multi-million pound music event. It is almost impossible to comprehend its vast scale and the impact it has on Finsbury Park and residents of Haringey, Islington and Hackney Council.
(One of the entrances to the Wireless compound - Photo Clive Carter)
The major concerns raised by Friends of Finsbury Park are those of noise, anti-social behaviour and crime. Islington Council’s representation highlights its own concerns about noise, insufficient management of anti-social behaviour and crime, parking, traffic, street cleaning, capacity and safe egress.
Our application for a licence review
In support of their case, the Friends have filed witness statements of residents of Finsbury Park setting out their experience of Wireless 2017, identifying issues such as intolerable noise at their homes, crime and anti-social behaviour including drug dealing, drug taking, aggressive behaviour, verbal abuse, intimidation, brawling, drinking in the street, public urination.
The Friends have also filed a noise report of Richard Vivian of Big Sky Acoustics Ltd which sets out how the noise condition attached to the Premises Licence does not control low frequency bass noise, is ineffective and not fit for purpose.
What we are hoping to achieve
We want Haringey’s Licensing Committee to revoke the Premises Licence so that Wireless Festival can no longer take place in Finsbury Park. The Park already makes income for the Council from smaller events such as the circus and funfairs, and location filming. We’d like the Council to work with us to find alternative, more imaginative, streams of income which are more appropriate in type and scale for our wonderful Park, and inclusive of the local community.
(Damage left to path from heavy vehicles - Photo Clive Carter)
The application is very important not just for the protection of Finsbury Park but as a beacon of hope for other residents suffering from over commercialisation of their local parks. The Friends are taking on the Goliath of the music industry and the vested interests of a local authority to reclaim their park for its proper purpose. If we can achieve a revocation of the licence or at least the imposition of proper noise and safety conditions, then we will have struck a blow for the protection of local parks.
Progress of the application for a licence review
As to the progress of our application, the Council advertised the Friends’ application for a licence review and asked for any representations to be made by 2nd August 2018. We have now received from the Council very many representations made by residents in support of our application together with a forthright representation from Islington Council setting out their and their residents’ concerns about Wireless.
The application of the Friends of Finsbury Park for a licence review is to be heard on 15 and 16 October 2018 from 7 pm onwards by the Haringey Licensing Sub-Committee at Civic Centre, High Road, Wood Green N22 8LE. The Friends will be represented by a barrister, Charles Streeten of Francis Taylor Buildings and a noise expert Richard Vivian of Big Sky Acoustics Ltd instructed by our solicitor Susan Ring of Harrison Grant.
Press reports so far
Wireless Festival: two die amid calls for park ban - Click here
Summer festivals leave Finsbury Park battered and bruised - Click here
Wireless Festival could lose Finsbury Park licence as councils back campaigners over crime and noise issues - Click here
(Grass fields turned into grey earth post Wireless - Photo Clive Carter)
How much are we raising and what is it for?
We now need to raise funds to pay our barrister, solicitor and noise expert to present our case as effectively as possible before the Licensing Committee. We are looking to raise at least £8,000.
Come and show your support!
As this is such an important issue, many of you having sent in representations or voiced your concern, we would invite you all to attend if possible either on 15th or 16th October or both from 7 pm onwards at Civic Centre, High Road, Wood Green N22 8LE. Show your support for the Friends and make the Licensing Committee members aware of the strength of feeling and the need to protect our local parks.
Please donate now and help save this park!
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