Liverpool council publish report on Hope and Glory Festival collapse
Join the campaign to sort out the mess of Hope and Glory Festival here
In a year of poorly organised festivals Hope and Glory Festival,held in Liverpool, has become the byword of them all.
The August festival was pulled after one day leaving many unpaid bands and others as well as a scramble for ticket refunds and a PR disaster by the organisers who blamed everyone and eachother in a series of confusing and contradictory statements and has resulted in an enquiry by Liverpool council.
The council themselves should have vetted the promoters and the festival and the fall out of the event is on going with many people unhappy with the report and the organisers who were either Tiny Cow/lee O’Hanlon/Ian Kerr or Hope and Glory Festival depending on what you read from them.
It really is time to make sure festivals are run far better than this before someone gets killed and this report should just be the start and someone should be answerable for the whole mess that saw poor planning and control by organisers of a music festival that led to “serious risks to public safety’.
Hope & Glory Festival in Liverpool was cut short on 6 August amid reports of overcrowding, long delays for artists, and acts cancelled at the last minute.
Organisers tinyCOW caused the event’s collapse but Liverpool City Council must improve checking procedures, health and safety experts said.
Lee O’Hanlon, chief executive tinyCow, called the report disappointing.
He said the investigation was not as thorough “as it claims to be”.
O’Hanlon himself has said a lot of things in the past few weeks and has run into problems at some other festivals he has been part of.
From the BBC website…
The report said failures led to “discomfort, confusion, anger and disappointment” for ticket-holders.
Some described the festival at Liverpool’s St Georges Quarter as “disorganised and dangerous”.
James lead singer Tim Booth apologised to fans for the “chaos”
The independent report, which was carried out by The Event Safety Shop and commissioned by Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson, found the festival – attended by 12,500 people – had no signage installed and no emergency evacuation plan in place.
There was no designated area for lost children or vulnerable adults and confusion around the queuing system, with some customers being given incorrect wristbands.
Police had to help open up another entrance on the first day, when there were very long queues at bars and toilets and the event manager left the site and was out of contact until the end of the day.
The report praised the council’s response, which enabled to first day to go ahead safely, but said it needed a more robust system for assessing companies who want to stage such events.
“Opportunities were missed by the council’s Safety Advisory Group and the associated Joint Agency Group to identify, shortcomings in advance,” the independent review said.
Charlotte ChurchImage copyrightADAM LOUGHRAN PHOTOGRAPHY
Charlotte Church did a set at Liquidation Liverpool after she was axed from the festival due to delays
Hope & Glory Festival Ltd went into liquidation while owing almost £888,984 to 32 creditors, including the council.
The city’s mayor, Joe Anderson, said it was “clear in retrospect” that the failure was “down to the mismanagement of the organisers” but the council would now “put in place enhanced planning procedures”.
The company had “a moral obligation to reimburse disappointed ticket-holders who are out of pocket”, he said.
A statement from organiser Mr O’Hanlon said he was “disappointed” with the report claiming the council’s role “has not been fully investigated.”
He added: “The little I have seen online suggests the investigation was nowhere near as thorough as it claims to be and the investigation team even rejected the opportunity to meet with me.”
Ticket selling websites Eventbrite and Skiddle said they had given full refunds to people with tickets for the cancelled day and a 50% refund for weekend ticket holders.