Doubt over Eastern Haze festival

Plans for a major music festival in Waveney could be scuppered after objections by the police, fire service and environmental health officers.

Plans for a major music festival in Waveney could be scuppered after objections by the police, fire service and environmental health officers.

Organisers behind Eastern Haze 2006, due to be held at the Somerleyton Hall estate near Lowestoft, will today ask Waveney District Council's licensing panel for a time-limited premises licence to run the festival from Friday July 21 to Sunday July 23.

So far, bands including rock legends Hawkwind and dance act Dreadzone have signed up for the festival, which has been described as being "weird and wonderful and a bit quirky".

Several local bands have been signed up to perform, with camping available for people wanting to stay.

Other attractions include a holistic area for therapies and readings and lots of activities for children including theatre shows, street theatre, puppetry and jewellery-making workshops.

Hazy Promotions, which is behind the festival on the 500-acre estate, has submitted an 83-page document, outlining the application including a raft of safety plans.

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It wants a licence from July 15 to 28 so it can get on the site, run the festival and clear up afterwards.

But letters to Waveney's licensing officer from Suffolk police, the county's fire service and the council's own environmental health team, say they cannot support the application.

Chief Insp Ian Moore has written to the council to say the police want to register objections on two grounds.

"I have assessed the traffic- management scheme as planned by the event organiser and I have concerns over entry and exit routes due to the narrowness of the proposed routes and the potential for accidents and blockages, particularly in the event of an evacuation procedure from the venue," says the letter, sent earlier this month. "I cannot currently assess the policing requirements as at this time the event organiser has not provided sufficient details of stewards i.e. number and their training qualifications."

Meanwhile, a letter from Lee Howell, Suffolk's director of public protection and chief fire officer, says, "insufficient information has been provided to assess reasonable promotion of the public safety licensing objective".

Responses from Waveney's environmental health team claim there is "significant potential for noise disturbance" and there is insufficient information around the health and safety plans.

Councillors will discuss the licensing application today at the Town Hall in Lowestoft at 2pm.

For more details on Eastern Haze 2006, visit

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