Police vow to take tough stance on ravers over Bank Holiday weekend

Thursday, May 1, 2014
11:46 AM

A police chief has vowed to be tough on rave goers and organisers as officers reveal an “increased likelihood” of an illegal event this Bank Holiday weekend.

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Historically a number of illegal raves and unlicensed music events have been held over Bank Holidays, and the warning comes days after four people were arrested and sound equipment seized at an event in Panxworth, near Acle.

Norfolk’s policing commander Chief Supt Nick Davison said officers will take a “tough stance” against those behind illegal events as well as the people attending.

He said: “These events are illegal and unsafe and while we always try to identify the organisers, people attending illegal raves can also face arrest.

“The reason for our tough stance is simple – these events are illegal and organisers have no concern for the health and welfare of those attended.

“There’s no control around drug use or medical support in place should something go wrong. We have a responsibility to uphold the law and a duty of care to the public and these events will not be tolerated as they can cause serious disruption to local communities.”

Four people were arrested on Sunday, April 27 after police were called to an unlicensed music event attended by between 150 and 200 people in Panxworth.

In July last year a man suffered head injuries after falling from a speaker rig at an illegal even in Swanton Abbott while a 26-year-old woman was airlifted to hospital after collapsing at an unlicensed music event in Croxton, near Thetford, after taking a cocktail of drugs.

Members of the public are urged to play their part and support police action by remaining vigilant by reporting any suspicious activity which may lead them to believe a rave is being organised.

Suspicious activity may include:

• A large gathering of vehicles in car parks or moving convoy of vehicles on roads.

• Invasions onto land by people with vans which may be carrying sound equipment.

• Trespassers on private land taking interest in a potential rave site.

Chief Supt Davison added: “We regularly monitor intelligence and social networking sites to enable preventative work to be taken.

“Early intervention to prevent and disrupt events is key – accurate and timely information on the factors outlined such as sightings of large numbers of vehicles is extremely useful to us and can allow police to close down an event before it’s even started.

“If we receive the information when the event is already underway, it may appear that we are not taking immediate action, the public can be reassured, however that we will be working behind the scenes to secure the closure of the event at the earliest safe opportunity and prosecute organisers and those involved.”

Anyone with information about an illegal rave or who believes they may have witnessed any suspicious activity on farmland or in buildings should contact Norfolk Constabulary on 101.

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