Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Electric Picnic Pic

ALL they need now is the weather. There was double good news for the organisers of the Electric Picnic last week, as tickets sold out in record time and its event licence was also granted.

Weekend tickets sold out, despite the festival not yet taking place for another month, and an increased capacity of 41,000 revellers a day. Last year, tickets for the festival sold out a week before, with around 32,500 people attending each day.

There was also no ‘Garth Brooks’-type drama, with Laois Co Council granting an event licence to EP Republic Ltd, subject to 34 conditions.

This year’s event will take place between 29-31 August at Stradbally Hall. There will be approximately 2,500 Sunday-only tickets, down from last year’s 3,000 tickets; 900 campervans will be accommodated in the designated campervan campsite, with an additional 80 in the family camping section.

The demand for tickets for this year’s festival is partly due to the success of last year’s event according to a delighted Thomas Cosby of Stradbally Hall.

“Following on from last year, it was a sell-out ten days before the festival so we had hoped that would encourage early buyers this year.”

Mr Cosby said last year’s festival was also the first in its ten  year history to have consistent dry weather before, during and after the festival which ensured a smooth weekend for revellers and organisers alike.

“Everything went well last year, it was an absolute dream,” he said.

Mr Cosby added the early sell-out sent out a strong message on the festival’s health.

“There was a fabulous line up last year and it’s gotten even better this year. They’ve really ticked the boxes for every generation in the line-up.”

Many of the licence conditions imposed by Laois Co Council are related to submission of final management plans by mid-August in relation to health, waste water and litter management.

This year, the cleaning plan after the festival “will be extended to the main thoroughfare of Stradbally, car parks and all routes up to a 1km radius.”

Inspections are also to be carried out in car parks during the night by security staff to remove any “authorised tents.”

In relation to fire safety, Laois Co Council added that “in order that congestion caused by traffic to or from the event does not hinder the fire brigade across the areas outside the event, the event organisers shall reimburse Laois Fire Services with the sum of €2,700 to provide a standby crew at Stradbally Fire Station.”

The sum that promoters pay as a contribution to the cost of measures undertaken by the council as part of the event remains unchanged from last year at €10,000. A bond of €30,000 will also lodged as a surety for the completion of remedial works arising from any damage to public property. €2,500 was also paid to Laois Co Council as part of costs for the review of the licence application.

The minutae of planning a music festival are also revealed in the licence application submitted by EP Republic Ltd.

Promoters shall “risk assess each band’s predicted audience size dynamic prior to the event and rate them green, amber and red. Any that have scored red will be have extra security deployed to the venue in advance of commencement of that act for extra help with crowds”.

The promoter’s application states that the age profile of revellers is predominantly between 25-45 and, as a result, “accordingly, the risk of incidences of crowd disturbance will be low.”

No submissions were made by the public on this year’s application.

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