When news happens, text AND and your photos or videos to 80360. Or contact us by email and phone.
Former F1 star Jody Scheckter responds to CarFest complaint
CARFEST – the major summer festival near Overton – may be under threat after the borough council agreed to review its licence.
A resident has compiled a dossier of evidence that has persuaded the borough’s licensing sub-committee to have a look at the licence for Laverstoke Park Farm, where the second festival of pop music and supercars is due to be held from August 23 to 25.
The unnamed mum claims that last year’s CarFest, held over the August bank holiday weekend, caused “significant disruption” to her home.
She has submitted video and photographic evidence and claims security was lax, litter was not well managed, the set-up and dismantling of the site were carried out throughout the night, heavy delivery vehicles passed her house for three weeks, alcohol was served to under-18s, and that light from the site shone directly into her home 24-hours a day.
Her review application includes evidence from under-age teenagers claiming they were served alcohol and not asked for identification.
The review will take place on March 18 when the borough council’s licensing sub-committee could revoke or alter the conditions of the licence, which allows the farm near Overton to run CarFest for up to 20,000 people.
Last year, the first event, organised by Radio 2 DJ Chris Evans, was a huge success, raising hundreds of thousands of pounds for BBC Children in Need.
But a small group of people living near Laverstoke Park, which is owned by ex-Formula One champion Jody Scheckter, attempted to stop the festival from going ahead.
Although they failed, councillors reviewing Laverstoke’s licence concluded that residents should be better consulted in the future.
But now, another review will be held to hear allegations that last year’s CarFest broke various licensing objectives, including failing to prevent crime and disorder and protect children from harm.
The council has also received representations from the Environmental Health team, the borough council as licensing authority, and the police, all of whom were not in support of the review application.
A statement from the borough council’s Environmental Health department said that although the applicant may have “experienced some degree of annoyance and frustration”, this did not “give rise to sleep disturbance”.
Overton borough councillor Ian Tilbury submitted a letter to say: “I have heard nothing but praise for this event from residents.”
He added: “You could only hear the sound from the main stage when you were almost directly in front of it.”
Overton Parish Council carried out its own review following last year’s CarFest and submitted a letter in support of the event continuing.
It said: “There was no reported nuisance, very little crime or disorder and no reported harm to children.”
Seven representations were submitted in support of the review, but two were rejected as irrelevant.
In a statement, Mr Scheckter said: “We are pleased to have such strong support from the police, licensing authority, Environmental Health, and Overton Parish Council following CarFest 2012.
“We have proposed some improvements to the operation this year to the parish council at their last meeting. Sadly, none of the very few local residents opposing CarFest attended.
“We are also delighted that 1,341 local residents demonstrated their support of CarFest with their wallets by pre-buying tickets for CarFest 2013, and the feedback from residents has been overwhelmingly supportive.”