Spalding Beer and Music Festival will return in 2019 after councillors today granted the event a temporary licence.
The event run by the town’s Round Table has raised tens of thousands for local charities in the last three years.
But this year’s festival had been placed in doubt after South Holland District Council’s Environmental Health team objected to the awarding of the licence for outdoor music despite no objections having been raised in relation to last year’s event.
Despite their concerns over the potential impact the beer festival would have on local residents on May 25 and 26, the authority’s License Committee agreed to approve the temporary licence at a hearing this morning.
The Round Table’s Matt Clark said after the hearing: “We’re delighted. I think to be fair the elected members have seen how seriously we have run the event for three years and they’ve had the confidence in us to allow us to do it again.
“We’re now working towards making the event as much of a success as it was last year, if not even more of a success.”
After two previous successful indoor events, last year’s was the first beer festival at the Castle Sports Complex in Spalding to have an outdoor music element.
The committee hearing heard that the organisers initially submitted the exact same application for last year’s event, but that was subsequently withdrawn for a new application, the only change of which was to seek permission for “amplified” music rather than “acoustic” as in the previous licence.
Environmental protection team leader Jackie Rands told the hearing: “We’ve made this objection because of a lack of information about what they intend to prevent a public nuisance and in particular the number and types of music that would be playing along with noise control measures.
“We also have concerns over the length of time the event has been asked to run.”
The licence requested live music be played between 8am and 9pm, however Matt Clarke, representing the Round Table at the hearing, said that was the same as the licence passed by the authority last year.
He told the committee they only intended to have live music between noon and 7pm, an increase on last year when music was played from noon to 4.30pm.
He also outlined measures on how the organisers would monitor noise from the three nearest residential homes.
Matt told the hearing that obtaining the outside licence was “critical” to the event. This licence is separate to the already granted licence for a the event inside the Castle Sports Complex where the beer will be served.
“The event’s been running for three years successfully and we attract around about 10,000 people,” he said. “We have raised around about £50,000 of which 100 per cent has been donated to local charities. It’s all local money that benefits for the community.
“We have 400 volunteers. This is a great community event, if not the greatest event this town has seen since the Flower Parade.
“It’s a moving event and we like to think it’s an improving event.
“We’ve been very lucky on every Bank Holiday this event is held on we’ve had glorious sunshine and not many people want to be inside then.
He added: “The first two years we had massive criticism that it was not all outside, never mind partially outside. We believe this is a great compromise.
“This application was accepted last year with the same information, or perhaps less. We were perhaps naive we didn’t need to submit more information with this application, but it doesn’t mean we won’t apply it.
“This is charity money, the local community’s money. We don’t want to be paying thousands of pounds paying finds for upsetting neighbours from the good cause which ensures we’re kept in good order.”
Summing up approving the licence, the chair of the Licence Committee, Jack Tyrrell, said: “Both parties acknowledged that further discussions would take place prior to the event to try to insure that no public nuisance arises.
“This is a charitable event with the aim of being run annually and it will be in the interest of organisers to continue to minimise any prospect of problem.”
A council spokesperson said: “South Holland District Council has always been fully supportive of this event and the great work it does to attract people to the town, entertain residents and raise invaluable funds for charity.
“The concern, raised by the Environmental Protection team, was to hear which strategies were in place to prevent the impact of noise nuisance on local residents during the event.
“Now that these issues in the Temporary Event Notice have been resolved, we look forward to working closely with the event organisers to ensure this is achieved and that the event is safe and successful for everyone.”