Licensing issues force dance music festival to relocate from Somerset village
PUBLISHED: 10:00 21 February 2018 | UPDATED: 11:01 21 February 2018
A dance music festival due to take place in a Somerset village has been cancelled due to licensing issues.
Another World festival was due to take place in Brean Sands’ Pontins resort in March, but organisers have moved the event to Cotswold Airport, in Gloucestershire, in August.
The festival was arranged in partnership with record label Fantazia and organiser Lee Bayako said moving was ‘one of the hardest decisions’ he has had to make.
He said: “We have been organising events across the UK since the 1990s and have never had to cancel before.
“We were approached by Pontins on a number of occasions and we saw an opportunity to bring a festival of this kind to Somerset for the first time.”
At a meeting with Pontins, Avon and Somerset police and licensing officials from Sedgemoor District Council last year, issues such as full 24-hour licensing, traffic restrictions and noise concerns were not raised.
Lee added: “We discussed what was required to make sure the festival was a safe event.
“There was no mention from the district council about us operating under a 24-hour license which Pontins held.”
A district council spokesman said: “Our environmental health officers get several calls a year about the cleanliness of the facilities at Pontins and consequently visited the park to investigate and concluded the rave was a licensable event.
“Originally, the organisers did not apply for the appropriate licences which ensure that any event is properly managed.
“Once the organisers had met with the police and others to discuss what is needed to ensure a safe event, they decided not to go ahead with the event.”
But Lee labelled the council’s comments as ‘untrue’.
He said: “We were not told to apply for any additional licenses and therefore did not know we were required to do so.
“We are professionals with years of experience organising these events, we had detailed plans ready to go so we could be sure the event was safely managed, but moving was our only option.”
The festival will now be held in Cotswold Airport across three days and festival goers will have the chance to rave inside a Boeing 747 plane.