Council releases correction on Cheddar festival licencing

Travellers arrive in North Somerset for religious festival

Sedgemoor Council has corrected its statement regarding a festival which took place last year. - Credit: Submitted

Sedgemoor Council has released a correction to a statement it made regarding a festival which took place in Cheddar last year.

In August, the Mercury reported the sudden appearance of an event in the village and approached the council on whether planning permission had been granted for the occasion.

At the time, a spokesperson said the council was made aware of the procession a few days earlier (August 16).

A number of nearby businesses have closed as a result of the crowd.

Vehicles arrived on August 16 to set up the event. - Credit: Submitted

They added: "The district council would not be required to give authority or permission for this event to take place.

"I understand that the organisers have the permission of the landowner for use of the land for the purpose of the event."

A statement has since been released, saying: "In August 2021, there was a suspected festival held in Cheddar and there were concerns raised as to whether the event benefited from consent or any relevant licence.

"At the time a spokesperson for the council confirmed that we were made aware of the event on Monday and had not previously been notified.

"The event was undertaken with the consent of the landowner and that we had no reports of licensable activities taking place on the land.

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"The statement indicated that planning permission or site licence was not required. Unfortunately, that statement was incorrect, for which we apologise."

The statement adds that 'whilst large scale events can be exempt through the appropriate licence, upon further investigation, no exemption had been gained ahead of the event and if no exemption is in place planning permission would normally be required.'

Sedgemoor Council has apologised for any confusion created regarding its earlier statement and encourages landowners and other parties to seek advice from their local council before organising events and festivals.