Was EDL to blame for festival losing money?
A host of factors including the English Defence League, local media, the Olympics and the economy could have been to blame for the Love Luton Festival losing £394,000, a report says.
A report from the council’s director of environment and regeneration, Colin Chick, says that “there was unlikely to be a single reason for the poor uptake – but as the promotion of the event continued a number of issues emerged.”
These included ticket prices being too high, poor weather, and Luton not having a track record in promoting international headline acts.
Also listed is the “combination of the competitive impact of the Olympics and the more general downturn in the economy”, which the report says led to several other festivals elsewhere being cancelled.
The EDL also features, because “although the May 5 demonstration passed peacefully, there was very extensive media coverage, much of which portrayed Luton in a negative way”.
Ane while there was positive media coverage, the emphasis by the press on ticket sales and the appropriateness of the council self-insuring the event when the authority is facing serious budget pressures “presented a negative perspective on the event”, the report says.
But Lib Dem group leader David Franks said the blame lay squarely with the council as organisers of the event.
“The council is good at many things but organising pop concerts is not one of them,” he said.
“They should have engaged a professional concert promoter who would have the experience and expertise to make sure there was a profit at the end of it.
“It was not terribly clever to organise two expensive concerts on consecutive evenings with both aimed at the same teenage market. Whatever made them think 20,000 local teenagers would be able to afford to go to both I cannot imagine.”
The report will be discussed at full council on Tuesday, September 11.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Luton
Thursday 23 May 2013
Temperature: 5 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 26 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 4 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 29 mph
Wind direction: North