Concern over plans for festival in Kilburn Grange park

A number of residents have been in contact to raise concern about the plans for the ‘Feis Irish Village’ to run in Kilburn Grange park from 26 July – 12 August.

The proposal is to erect a big marquee – which could hold up to 5,000 people (although the promoter says he doesn’t expect more than 2,500 at any one time) – in the middle of the park. From the site plan (full application available here), it’s clear that the main central section of the park will be entirely taken up by the event.

Kilburn Grange park (without a huge marquee in the middle) © Mike Quinn

This marquee would show coverage of the Olympics;  other attractions and corporate hospitality are also planned.  The applicant states that doors would open from 11:00 am to half past midnight from Mon-Thurs, 11:00 am to 2:30 am on Friday and Saturday, and 11:00 am to 1:30 am on Sunday, with the sale of alcohol, refreshments and late night music/entertainment permitted up to half an hour before those end times.

The promoter, Vince Power, did organise a public meeting in the Black Lion a couple of weeks ago, but I know that many people – myself included – had very little notice of this and so couldn’t make it.

We all want to see the best use made of our local park.  But whilst big events in the park can have the benefit of providing entertainment for local people and extra business to local traders, this mustn’t be at the expense of residents’ well-being.

I’m meeting the promoter later this week, and am willing to hear the proposals explained in full.  However, I do share the concerns of residents, and (I understand) the police, that the overall scale of the event is too big and the hours too long.

As currently planned, this festival will take over the park at the height of the summer holidays and extend into the early hours of the morning for days on end.  This will be hugely disruptive for local people and I don’t think I can support such a proposal as it now stands.

Also, presumably the event will be ticketed.  I’d like to know more about the promoter’s pricing policy, and how this will ensure the event is inclusive for local families who are really feeling the pinch.

If you want to comment on the application (again, you can see the whole thing here), you can write to the Licensing Team, Camden Town Hall Extension, Argyll Street, London WC1H 8EQ or comment online here.

You will need to quote the reference APP\PREMISES-NEW\001117 and make sure your comments are in by Monday 12 March.   You should also bear in mind that for any comments or objections to be considered relevant, they must address the likely effect of the application being granted on the promotion of the four licensing objectives: prevention of crime and disorder; protection of children from harm; public safety and prevention of nuisance.

We’re be interested to know what you think, so please let us know by emailing mike.katz@camden.gov.uk.

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Comments

  • KIERAN DONAL BRADLEY  On 6 March 2012 at 4:54 am

    What”s the problem with you guys? The “Feis Village” has the
    the potential to put Kilburn “on the map” for all the right
    reasons, and provide a much needed boost for the area.Vince
    Power has vast experience of organising much larger festivals
    than this- his record in doing so speaks for itself. There have been little or no issues with crime, public safety or anti-social behaviour in the past and this much smaller event,
    i”m sure would be no different. Grange is, after all, a small, secure Park and easily controlled. Don”t even think of
    bringing up the “old chestnuts” of Irish people behaving badly
    The Park is a public facility and, as such, has always been
    underused. Let Kilburn,like Wembley, join in the Olympic
    “fun” – we can show the rest of London what a great area this
    is and, in the process, change alot of the negative perceptions of the area. Let”s go for it, and ignore the local
    “killjoys”. Let”s bring the “Olympic Spirit” to Kilburn!