Thursday, 25 June 2015

So how was Wildlife 15 for you?

     Hello and welcome to my blog. If I were a betting man, I'd have put money on Wildlife 15 creating traffic chaos and a spike in the crime statistics. Luckily I'm not, because I'd have lost a fortune.  The roads were clear and the peaceful revellers created a joyful vibe in the town.
     So how was Wildlife for you?

Inspector Allan Lowe, Adur and Worthing Neighbourhood Policing Team
"There were few significant problems and many opportunities for positive interactions between the police and local community. There was very little anti-social behaviour around the event and not many issues inside. All the feedback we have had seems to have been pretty positive."

"One of the reasons that planning took so long, was to ensure that the airport could operate as normal during the setup and dismantling of the Wildlife event. On Monday morning, there was a slight delay, which meant the airport opened about 30 minutes later than planned. It's safe to say that airside operations were not restricted and there's been no real damage reported. The feedback so far has been excellent. The reception to the festival has been overwhelming really, with lots of positive press and social media sentiment." 
Vida Hatchard (right), local resident
"I had a great time.  
     There was a great range of music to suit many tastes. It was full of friendly and smiling people - even the staff - and there were people there of all ages. 
     I thought Wildlife was well organised. The only small problems for me were the bars, the toilet queues and the amount of rubbish everywhere, but we all put it there! After having such a fantastic time on Saturday, on Sunday morning, I decided that I would try and get a ticket for day two and I wasn't disappointed. I will be getting a ticket for the next one without a doubt." 
     Councillor Emma Evans commented, 
     "As the new Chair of Adur District Council Licensing Committee, I was looking at the Wildlife weekend with a great deal of trepidation. Stories of traffic chaos for miles around, rapes, murders, people drowning in the river etc, led to many sleepless nights. However, after the event, I can honestly say that I have never been so proud of my town and my community. 
     Of course there have been issues, mainly surrounding the shuttle bus system, but by Sunday evening this too ran to plan. I waved off the last one leaving the site at 1am on Monday morning. 
     There was an all agency debrief a few weeks ago and lessons will be learned. 
     Special mention should be made of our environmental health officers who visited every single person concerned with noise levels, and to our clean-up crews who, by 9am on Sunday and Monday mornings, had our town looking spick and span once more."
     Mark Milling, Bursar at Lancing College, one of the closest buildings to the site, said,
     "We feel that the festival went as well as we could have hoped for. There were no problems with traffic or trespassers, although we did have to spend several thousands of pounds on extra security which prevented any problems.
     Regarding noise, we were lucky with the wind direction which meant that all was quiet on Saturday. On Sunday, we were subjected to quite a bit of "duff-duff" bass but it wasn't too bad. We understand that those on West Beach were not so fortunate. 
      Also, we would have liked the organisers to have picked up litter around Coombes Lane, where people came to catch cabs. The organisers need to put cabs ranks to the south of the A27 next year to prevent pedestrians crossing this extremely dangerous road. 
     So, overall a great success but we have serious reservations about a doubling in size to 70,000 guests which is proposed for next year."
      Joss Loader is Chair of Shoreham Beach Residents' Association and her own son and daughter went to the festival. She said,
     "Lots of people were concerned prior to the festival but in the event it passed off very much more peacefully on the Beach than we'd dared hope. We put out feedback forms to properties west of Ferry Road as we were very keen to know what people felt and the majority reported there were few problems.
     We do know that noise was an issue for some, particularly those at West Beach and in the town, and there is an argument for reducing the decibel level as some people found it very difficult to cope with, particularly those with young children trying to sleep. But generally most Beach residents were pretty relieved."
      Councillor Geoff Patmore (Widewater Ward and West Beach Residents' Association said, 
     "Never again. The persistent bass beats on Saturday and Sunday were all invasive. They shook houses, and residents, including children, could not sleep until the early hours of the morning. 
     Some residents described the noise as like living next door to neighbours who were having a rave until the early hours of the morning. Others felt absolutely powerless and very angry that they should be relentlessly forced to listen to a cacophany of screams, shouts and base beats for two consecutive days, especially on the Sunday before a working day. The helpline to complain about the volume was clogged up with lost property calls, so many residents gave up."     
     A resident of St Nicholas Ward said,
     "I would like to ask that when the Council reviews the Wildlife Festival, it takes into account the views of people such as myself who had a dreadful experience of it. I know lots of people enjoyed the festival and it is apparently good for the town financially. However, I and many others found the weekend intolerable... and I don't normally have a problem with noise ... Sunday, to be fair, was not a level of noise which I would want, but it was just about tolerable. I was absolutely staggered, however, at the volume on Saturday... during the day it was impossible to sit in the garden and have a normal conversation. What was especially disturbing though, was the evening and night time volume and there was nowhere in my house I could get away from the noise... It was impossible to get to sleep even with all the windows closed.
     I know the volume levels were all within limits...but the limits are clearly vastly wrong if that level of intrusion into a person's house is deemed acceptable."
     This is only a sample of opinions on the festival, but all residents are being asked for their views at a questions and answers debrief on Wildlife on...

Wednesday 1st July 2015
Shoreham Academy 
Kingston Lane
BN43 6YT

See you there.     
     Well, Tom's summer holidays are just around the corner, so I'm going to have a short break before returning in late August with features on Shoreham Airport and the Dogs Trust
     Thanks for dropping by and see you on the beach. 

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Feedback on Adur Festival please

Hello and welcome to my blog. Before I post on reactions to Wildlife, the team behind Food of Love would like to hear what you thought of this year's Adur Festival.  

Festival debrief at Ropetackle

Adur Festival will be holding a post-festival de-brief and feedback event at Ropetackle on Tuesday 16th June 6-7.30pm. Local residents and businesses are encouraged to come along and share their experiences of the festival this year. We want to know what went down a treat, what you would like to see on the menu again and what maybe wasn’t to your taste.
     To secure the future of the festival and help it to grow and develop, we want to know the impact the festival has on our local communities; businesses, artists, volunteers, visitors, residents and festival goers  – your feedback is key to helping us secure future funding.
     We hope to see you on the 16th June.
     For interviews and more information, please contact Mella on 01903 741469 and

See Gull flies onto Coronation Green to join Shoreham's street party.

Rude Mechanicals at Ropetackle 

     I only managed to get to Shoreham's Street party and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I loved the way that entertainers suddenly appeared from nowhere and mingled with the crowds. Much nicer than just performing on stage and disappearing. More of that please. 
     I'll be back soon with comments on the inaugural Wildlife Festival.
Thanks for dropping by. 

Friday, 5 June 2015

Wildlife Festival - a community perspective

     Hello and welcome to my blog. The countdown to Wildlife has begun and it's all quite exciting. 
     A dull part of Shoreham Airport has been transformed into a massive colourful arena and the forecast is for sunny weather all weekend. Revellers have started to arrive, so welcome to you. If you don't know Shoreham, why not head into town for a bite to eat and drink? If fresh local fish takes your fancy, pop across our iconic Adur Ferry Bridge to visit the popular Into the Blue, or stay in town and enjoy relaxing views from the Bridge Inn's riverside terrace or embrace the aura of serenity around St Mary de Haura's Church in East Street. 
     For those not going to Wildlife, the Adur Festival reaches its half way point this weekend and one of the major highlights is the Military History Weekend at Shoreham Fort.
     If you are travelling over the weekend, the Sussex Police twitter account will have real time information on local road conditions.
      All those that need the Council's hotline number should have it by now so all that's left is to sit back and hope that a spirit of friendliness and tolerance spreads through the town and that Wildlife is a great success.  
     The time to review what went right and wrong on the day will be long after Wildlife has packed up and left town. Although this official debrief is not open to the public, views are being sought from local residents and businesses and should be given via our elected representatives and/or residents associations. Residents on Shoreham Beach, for instance, can give their views to Joss Loader, the Chair of Shoreham Beach Residents Association at and those in Lancing Manor to Bill Freeman at
     Some of our local organisations have also issued the following joint statement:
     "Working in partnership, resident groups from across Adur have confirmed that they hope the Festival passes off peacefully and successfully and brings the significant benefits to the area as predicted by SJM the event organiser. 
     The groups will work together to run a post-event study, in a bid to gauge the commercial benefits enjoyed by businesses in the district." 
Adur Groups
Shoreham Beach Residents' Association
West Beach Residents' Association
The Shoreham Society
Lancing Manor SE Residents' Network
Barfield Park Residents
So, if you have a retail business and would like to participate, watch out for more on my next blog. 
     Well, this is the last in the series of mini-blogs but, before I go, I want to put a shout out to Allstars, one of our local bands, which will be appearing at Wildlife. I hope they have a fabulous day and if you're around please go along and support them at their Stagewagon. 
     Thanks for dropping by and whatever you are doing this weekend, I hope you have a wonderful time.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Wildlife 2015 - the Council's responsibilities UPDATED

Hello and welcome to this, the second mini-blog, on the Wildlife Festival. 

Notice on the Norfolk Bridge on the A295.

      I had hoped to bring you some extra information from the Council, but no joy as I post, so I have fallen back on their Wildlife FAQs. This seemed the most interesting bit;

"The Councils' Parks and Foreshores Department will have extra staff on duty to patrol areas on both days of the festival. They will be reporting any problems with litter, illegal camping, illegal parking etc to Event Control at the festival so that the relevant agency can then deal with this issue as soon as possible. These members of staff will remain outside of the event site so that they can respond quickly."
      And from me;
  • Parking -  illegal parking falls within the Council's remit, obstructions within the Police's. If a vehicle is illegally parked or blocking you in, call the Council's hotline 01273- 461982 which is open between 12.00 - 02.00 on both days.  If the vehicle is causing an obstruction, call the Police on 101 or 999.
You could also park across your own drive if you thought you may get blocked in, provided it's legal to avoid getting fined.  
  • Noise  -  this also falls within the Council's remit and they have agreed the noise levels with SJM Concerts. If you hear noise that is causing you a nuisance, call the Council's hotline 01273 - 461982
If you complain about noise, make a record of the time, date, duration, what you can hear and in what ways you have been affected. 
  • Litter - another of the Council's jobs, and teams will be clearing up during and after the weekend. 
  • Camping - a substantial number of tickets have been bought by locals, so this may not be a big issue. However, if you spot someone camping illegally and wish to report it, call the Council's hotline, 01273 - 461982, and if campers behaviour becomes anti-social, you can call the Police on 101 or 999.
Thanks for dropping by. On Friday, I'll be posting a blog on the community's perspective on Wildlife.
See you soon.

  • Traffic - 1800 revellers are expected to arrive by car. Additional parking will be provided on the airport and peak times on the A27 and A259 are expected to be between 11.00 - 13.00, 14.00 - 18.00 and 23.00 - 00.00. 
  • Noise monitoring - "This will be taking place at selected locations. Environmental Health Officers will be available to attend private dwellings to take more accurate readings and will respond to complaints in order of receipt."
  • Camping. "No camping is permitted. Park Rangers, Beach Patrol Officers and Neighbourhood policing will discourage such activity and anyone found camping will be offered advice...on a case by case basis."
  • Inpromptu street/house parties. "Call 101 or the Council's out of hours number 07713 889128. Noise complaints unrelated to the event will be dealt with in the normal way."
Thank you to the chair of the Safety Advisory Group for providing this extra information. 

Monday, 1 June 2015

Wildlife Festival 2015 - local policing

Hello and welcome to my blog. The popular, but controversial, Wildlife 2015,  kicks off on Saturday 6th June, so this week I'll be posting a series of mini-blogs on our two-day music festival.
     This post deals with the event from a policing point of view.

Inspector Allan Lowe, Head of Adur and Worthing Neighbourhood Policing Team

 "Prime responsibility for the planning of the event, including the site and the immediate area, rests with the organisers SJM concerts who have been liaising closely with Adur District Council and ourselves.

Our remit is to support this local event by keeping the public safe and dealing with any anti-social behaviour. Therefore, there will be a significantly increased police presence in Shoreham town, on the local roads, particularly the A27, and at Shoreham railway station. Specialist teams, such as the dogs and motorcycle units and the police helicopter will be on hand, and there will be increased foot patrols. 
Our approach towards the revellers will be firm but friendly, and we will actively engage with locals to see how the festival is affecting them. An event of this size means that people will need to be more tolerant than usual, but any anti-social behaviour will be dealt with.
The motorcycle unit will keep traffic moving smoothly, but they anticipate that the roads will be congested between 2pm – 6pm and again from about 11pm – midnight. It would therefore be advisable to avoid these periods or give yourself plenty of extra travelling time. Real time updates on travel conditions will appear on the Sussex Police twitter account.
British Transport police will be posted to Shoreham railway station to deal with the increased passengers numbers and peak time there is expected during the late evening.
If you call 101, (non-emergencies) or 999, (emergencies), you will be put through to the dedicated Wildlife control room.
We handle the planning for events like Pride and football matches and don’t feel that we could be better prepared than we already are and we would advise everyone to carry on with their normal routine.”
My thanks to Inspector Lowe for contributing to this blog. 
On Wednesday, I'll be posting on the Council's remit which includes parking, waste collection and noise. 
Thanks for dropping by and see you in a couple of days.