11 safety tips ahead of Latitude Festival 2021


Police are reminding festival-goers to think of security at Latitude Festival 2021 - Credit: Megan Aldous

Thousands of people will head to Suffolk this weekend for Latitude 2021 - and police are urging festival-goers to think about security while at the popular event. 

The four-day music and arts festival, at Henham Park, near Southwold, begins tomorrow, and Suffolk police is warning spectators to being careful with their possessions. 

The festival, which was cancelled last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, has a capacity of 40,000, with music headliners including Wolf Alice, The Chemical Brothers, Bastille and Bombay Bicycle Club.

The Latitude Festival at Henham Park. Picture: James Bass

Thefts have happened at the festival in previous years - Credit: James Bass

Suffolk police said the main crime at music festivals across the UK tends to be thefts from tents on campsites. Phones, laptops, tablets and cash are typically the most stolen items.

In previous years, there have been a number of such offences, many on the first night of the festival when criminals target tents on the assumption that campers are settling in and have not made plans for their security, police said. 

Other thefts have taken place while festival-goers had their attention diverted when watching performances. 

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This included incidents where people had camera equipment stolen from near their feet, thefts from bags that were being carried and items stolen from pockets.

As well as the safety advice, police are also reminding motorists that there may be some delays on the A12 near Henham as thousands of people flock to the site.

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Traffic is likely to be slow-moving along the A12, particularly between Yoxford and the festival site. 

Suffolk police has issued the following advice for festival-goers: 
• Stick with your friends and look out for each other.

• Follow the advice of stewards and security personnel on the site.
• With warm weather likely, moderate your alcohol consumption. Overdo it and you may find yourself in trouble with the police or stewards. Have a glass of water between drinks and pace yourself.
• Be careful. Festivals give you the opportunity to meet new friends but going off alone with people who you’ve just met may lead you into situations you don’t want to be in. 
• There is safety in groups. Set up camp near friends, make friends with your neighbours and learn the layout of the site so you can find what you need – toilets/stewards, etc., without getting lost. You can always ask staff for help with directions or anything else you may need.
• Don’t bring large sums of cash, lots of credit/debit cards, or lots of valuables with you. Only bring what you need and keep them on you, or in a locker, at all times.
• If you can’t take your valuables with you when you leave your tent leave them at home. A tent offers little, if any, security and can easily be entered even if the entrance is padlocked.

Music fans enjoying Wolf Alice on the Obelisk Latitude 2018.
Picture: Nick Butcher

Crowds at the festival in 2018 - Credit: Nick Butcher

• Make use of the property storage tent onsite, open 24 hours, to store your valuables and possessions securely.
• Place any property that would be attractive to thieves (cash, credit cards, mobile phones, cameras, etc.) inside a bag and tuck it into your sleeping bag when you go to sleep with larger items at your feet. 
• If you arrive by car don’t leave anything in your vehicle, including satellite navigation systems/ CDs, cash etc. Take everything with you or leave it at home. 
• Keep mobile phones secure. It’s easy for a pickpocket to remove items such as these from a pocket or bag in a crowd without you noticing. 
Any suspicious activity can be reported to security or stewards on site or, in an emergency, or if a crime is in progress, use 999.


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