Relief as outdoor amplified music ban at Worstead pub is lifted in time for festival weekend

Worstead White Lady owner Dennis Gilligan, featured when he won the Four in a Bed TV show. Picture:

Worstead White Lady owner Dennis Gilligan, featured when he won the Four in a Bed TV show. Picture: Maurice Gray - Credit: Archant

A pub in the heart of a festival village is relieved after a ban on outdoor bands was lifted.

A noise abatement order was initially served last week on the White Lady pub at Worstead by North Norfolk District Council after complaints from neighbours.

It would have stopped the venue playing amplified music in its grounds - and came shortly before the venue was due to host nearly 20 bands over the three days of the Worstead Festival weekend of July 24-26.

The pub's music events are not part of the official festival, but landlord Dennis Gilligan said they were a traditional part of the weekend which helped both the pub and

the village event attract visitors.

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Just days ago it looked like the plug had been pulled on the amplified music because of the order from the council - which said there had been breaches of music finish times, and abusive language used over the PA system.

But on Monday Mr Gilligan met council officials and was 'relieved' after the festival weekend ban was lifted.

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The council has imposed conditions which include a noise limiter on the equipment and finish times of 11pm Friday, 10pm Saturday and 9pm Sunday.

Mr Gilligan said that following the swearing incident, which happened at the recent Titchfest charity weekend, all bands would have to sign an agreement not to use foul language.

'If they disobey they will be unplugged, removed and won't play here again,' he added.

'We try to be good neighbours and get a lot of support from the village. We alerted people about Titchfest and gave them free tickets.

'Music is less important to us now since the B and B side of the business has grown, helped by our appearance on the Four in a Bed TV show.

'We sell more drink but the costs of marquees, band and staff means the profits are not that large.'

The pub had a long tradition of being involved in the festival, which is marking its 50th anniversary this year, but broke away from the main festival programme two years ago to 'do our own thing.'

When the ban was initially imposed the council said it had 'no choice but to act in the interests of the community as a whole' after residents were upset by the noise.

After Monday's 'very frank' meeting and the lifting of the ban, it added: 'We will continue to monitor and act when noise levels are excessive.

'In addition the music levels at the pub will be set by the council's environmental protection team and digitally limited to ensure they can't be increased.'

It added that future outdoor amplified music events were subject to the festival weekend being 'successfully managed with no issues.'

Mr Gilligan said a November 7 village fireworks event would go ahead with live music.

Bands booked for a planned weekend in September had been moved to a series of other dates inside the pub.

Details of music events at the pub are on its website

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