May 25 2013 Latest news:
by Tim Lamden
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Residents have expressed their “relief” after the cancellation of a 10-day Jamaican-themed festival planned for Finsbury Park during the 2012 Olympics.
Last week, organisers for Jamaica Village, scheduled to take place between August 3 and 13, announced that the festival would no longer be taking place due to a lack of funding.
The announcement, made on the festival’s website, explained that “the full extent of the financial commitments received has fallen short of the funding required to execute the attraction”.
Residents living close to Finsbury Park welcomed the decision, amid fears the event would create problems with noise, anti-social behaviour and littering.
Madeline Palm, 59, co-chair of Woodstock Road Residents Association, told the Journal of residents’ “relief” after hearing the news last week, adding: “It’s not fair to inflict that noise and disruption on people who have no choice but to sit here and suffer it – and then deny us access to the only piece of open space we’ve got.”
In December, Haringey Council licensing committee approved the festival’s plans for a 15,000-capacity event in the park, including a main stage for live music acts, along with giant screens broadcasting coverage of the 2012 Games, a real sand ‘beach’ and a swimming pool.
Ziggi Goldsmith, who was involved in the organisation of the festival, said: “The official line [for the cancellation] was funding, but unofficially I think there were licensing problems, so they couldn’t have live music every day and so on. I think some of the sponsors may have pulled out.”
The festival, which promised to “showcase the best of Brand Jamaica”, faced two objections from residents at last year’s licensing meeting.
But Cllr Richard Wilson, leader of Haringey Liberal Democrats, insisted “there had been no consultation about the event - no one knew anything about it.”
He added: “The question now is, was there a cancellation fee to compensate for the council time spent?”
A council spokeswoman said the council “received a licence application fee and a non-returnable deposit for use of the park” which “covered the council’s preparation costs” for the festival application.
At the time the Journal went to press, Jamaica Village organisers were unavailable for a comment.