Police raise fears of drugs and crime at 3-day dance music festival planned for Leicester’s Abbey Park
Police have expressed serious safety concerns over a planned three-day dance music festival which may take place at Leicester’s Abbey Park this summer. The Beyond Festival could welcome 10,000 people a day at the end of June, according to the organizers.
While a number of acts have been announced, organizers have yet to secure a license from Leicester City Council – who are due to decide next week whether to grant approval. Events organizer JBR says it will ensure safety measures are in place and hopes that Beyond Festival, which runs from Friday to Sunday June 24 and 26, can become an annual event.
However, while Leicestershire Police said they accepted the festival was “providing very good economic benefit to the town”, they had a number of concerns. Officers fear its scale could put police and other public services under pressure, cause a nuisance to neighbors and, potentially, attract drug dealers and thieves.
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David Braithwaite, Deputy Director of Force Licensing, wrote to the council to express these concerns. He wrote: “This event will fall on a weekend in the middle of the summer period when the demand for policing – especially the night economy – will be high.
“With events of this magnitude, the likelihood of an impact on crime and disorder is also greatly increased, particularly when fueled by the use of drugs or alcohol – or a combination of both. Our experience previous festivals with a similar theme has shown that due to the age group that will be attending this event, a large number of festival-goers will be using either alcohol or drugs.
“We must bear in mind that the main event on Saturday is described on the contestant’s website as ‘the biggest dance festival ever in Leicester’ and a ‘raver’s dream’. Such big events have also the potential to attract local, regional and national crime, as experienced by other festivals of this size to commit organized crime such as phone thefts or the distribution of controlled drugs.
“We must not underestimate the effect that so many festival-goers converging on the area will have on the local community, particularly the public nuisance and anti-social behavior caused by people leading up to the event and, more importantly, when There’s no mention of how or who will address individuals or groups who show up without tickets and then wander outside the erected fence or, more ominously, into nearby streets.
Officers also believe that a large number of participants would leave the site at the end of each day and head for the nearby city center. Officers believe this would further strain policing in the city centre.
The city council’s licensing subcommittee is due to meet at City Hall on Charles Street on Thursday, March 31 to decide the fate of the event. While the main event is scheduled to take place on Saturday, organizers plan to kick off from Friday, with music playing from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. each day.
They promised that all staff employed will be trained in the law and will work alongside the police to prevent any kind of disorder. This would allow security staff to hold the relevant professional qualifications and registrations, while anyone involved in serving alcohol would ensure they were not selling to under-18s.
In a statement on its website, the festival says: “Leicester ravers are on high alert as we are about to make your day. The biggest ever dance music festival in Leicester city center is finally here. there, and he’s ready to wow 10,000 lucky ticket holders.
“Over 30 artists will blast UKG, house, tech, drum and bass and similar genres across three stages in beautiful Abbey Park for the massive Beyond Festival 2022. And you could be there to experience it.
“So far some fantastic names have been announced including Wilkinson, the DJ behind hits ‘Afterglow’ and ‘Sweet Lies’. Alongside him will be Bru-C, Flava-D, Bou, Culture Shock, Monrroe, Dimension, Skream, Low Steppa, Pax and Sammy Virji. Best of all, there are still more huge artists to be announced soon.
“With such a cracking line-up, tickets won’t last long. Get your Beyond Festival tickets now for eleven hours of top tunes and skanking. This event is strictly for ages 18+.”