Prestwich Labour take stand against Parklife
Pictured (Left to Right) Cllr Alan Quinn, MP Ivan Lewis, Cllr Michael James and Cllr Andrea Simpson.
Bury South MP Ivan Lewis and Sedgley Ward Councillors, Michael James, Alan Quinn and Andrea Simpson have launched a campaign to stop next year’s Parklife Festival which is due to take place on the 6th & 7th June 2015.
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The event, which has been running for the last two years, takes place in Heaton Park, owned by Manchester City Council. The park is surrounded by the Prestwich area on three sides.
Parklife has become controversial given the negative impact on Prestwich residents and businesses. Approximately 130,000 people attended the Parklife event this year, with issues such as:
– antisocial behaviour linked to alcohol consumption
– public urination
– racial abuse
– open drug taking
– Three stabbings and tragically one death
It has recently been announced that an additional event will take place before the Parklife weekend begins in earnest on Saturday 6 June 2015. The event, a concert by the band the Courteeners will take place on preceding Friday night, with 20,000 people expected to attend. Since this announcement of what is in effect a three day Parklife event, even more local residents and businesses have contacted local Councillors and Ivan Lewis.
Sedgley Councillor Alan Quinn said: “What we are now asking for is simple. An immediate end to large concerts taking place in Heaton Park. As local Prestwich residents and politicians we see the negative impacts of Parklife but the organisers seem to be in denial. We would therefore call on Manchester City Council to commission an independent review on the impact of such events on Prestwich residents. In the meantime we will be campaigning to have Parklife and similar events stopped. Standing up for Prestwich residents is our top priority.”
Ivan Lewis MP said “Enough is enough. I receive hundreds upon hundreds of complaints every year following the Parklife event from Prestwich residents. Some residents feel frightened to leave own homes while the event is on. Some residents have had their property damaged and there have even been instances of festival goers urinating in peoples’ gardens. Now the use of Heaton Park is being extended on the Parklife weekend we have to take action. I would urge Prestwich residents to support our campaign.”
Councillor Michael James said “It is disappointing that we have been forced to take these actions. We have tried to negotiate with the organisers of Parklife and Manchester City Council but to no avail. There is absolutely no benefit to Prestwich at all, and certainly not to the local economy. Many local businesses have contacted us saying that a whole weekend’s worth of takings are lost due to the event. Local residents do not want it, local businesses do not want it, our community does not want it. It is simply not tenable to expect Prestwich to clean up other peoples’ mess.”
Ivan Lewis and Prestwich Councillors will be holding a Street Stall at the Longfield precinct on Saturday 13 December 2014 to listen to residents’ views on the issue.