I AM amazed to learn that the council’s licensing committee has approved the application made for a music festival at Shoreham Airport.
At the end of the day, I assume there were no legal grounds to reject, despite the police saying they did not want the event to go ahead as per the application.
It must have been a difficult decision and obviously not one made easily in light of the many hours spent in discussions, both publicly and elsewhere.
Where am I coming from? If I had still been a councillor, I would have stood my ground and objected 100 per cent to the application.
Why? For starters, the total disregard and disrespect shown to Shoreham by giving the event the working title Worthing Weekender.
Secondly, Shoreham Airport is an airport, it is not a music venue. For the first time since before the war, flying will not be permitted in or out of the airport. Why is this allowed to happen? Is there not some documentation which means the new leaseholders are not allowed yo do this?
During the hearing, we were told by the applicants that they would be providing 150 buses to take people to and from the venue. Really? The only entrance will be via the A27 – I wish them luck getting a bus under the bridge via the 259.
Apparently on the first night of the hearing, the applicants said they would provide parking. Really? Where are possibly 10,000 cars going to park?
An amazing statement from the applicant was that Shoreham would gain significantly (financially) by the event. Really? What has Shoreham got to offer to 35,000 partygoers?
We do not have any department stores. We don’t have any hotels for these people to stay in. We do have an excellent array of pubs and restaurants, but surely food and drink will be in plentiful demand at the venue itself?
This festival is going to be a two-day event. Those attending will have to leave after the first day at 1am and then return the next day to do it all again. Really? Where are these people (35,000 of them in the first year, possibly building to just under 70,000) going to go? OK, these wonderful 150 buses will be taking them somewhere, but where?
I want to know how much consideration has been given to the people of Shoreham, those who live in close proximity of the airport. I want to know the legality of closing our airport for two days.
The applicants banged on about their other highly-successful events. Hello. This is not Manchester. Have all the logistics really been taken into consideration?
There are options open to the police and the public, despite the committee decision.
I could write a book about my concerns, but I only have very limited space to write this column.