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Summer festivals leave Finsbury Park battered and bruised

20 July, 2018

A brief respite for battered and bruised Finsbury Park

• POOR, threadbare Finsbury Park now has a few weeks’ respite before the next batch of Haringey Council-approved major events in September, totalling 20k-plus patrons.

Over June and July, it’s taken a hammering as never before. Approximately a quarter of a million ticket-holders have left our park battered and bruised.

Six days of events – with 45,000 patrons each – involved walling-off about half the park from the public, using 12ft high super-fortress security fencing.

It takes more than a fortnight to build and take down. The impact is more than all this suggests: these events dominate not only the whole of the park, but the noise and disruption penetrate three surrounding boroughs.

Hackney takes the brunt of Haringey’s selfish policy as it runs along Seven Sisters Road.

Haringey’s policy is enabled by a railway station in another borough (Islington) and the fact that the park is at the southernmost tip of Haringey boundary, meaning that roughly two-thirds of the aggravation falls on residents of neighbouring boroughs.

Ordinarily, the body politic would have reacted to stop this abuse. Four years ago, the MP for Islington North (and patron of Friends of Finsbury Park) wrote to the Haringey chief executive to protest, but to no avail.

Since then, other Labour MPs seem bound by omertà not to criticise their delinquent colleagues on behalf of their constituents.

A Finsbury Park community stakeholder group – controlled by Haringey – was always a sop and lightning rod. Council promises that follow Wireless each year to “mitigate” and minimise the worst effects are ineffective and have led to the worst major event-summer yet.

Now, the Friends of Finsbury Park has applied for a review of the licence that the licensing authority (Haringey) issued to Haringey’s park customers.

Anyone with concerns should write to licensing@haringey.gov.uk but should first read this at www.goo.gl/cRzf9F.

CLIVE CARTER
Stroud Green resident and former
Haringey councillor (Highgate ward)

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