Leeds Festival licensing decision looms

Decision-makers will meet to discuss whether to grant a licence for this year's Leeds Festival - less than two weeks before the event starts.

Wednesday, 8th August 2018, 4:23 pm
Updated Monday, 13th August 2018, 11:29 am
Leeds Festival-goers in 2015.

The August bank holiday rock festival will learn its fate at a licensing committee meeting next week - where councillors are expected to grant permission for this year's event to take place.

Acts such as Kings of Leon, Fall Out Boy and Kendrick Lamar are expected to play in front of 70,000 people.

A report set to go before the committee claims issues from last year's festival, such as traffic management and signage, have been addressed for 2018's event.

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The Leeds mud-invasion of 2016, after many festival-goers discarded filth-encrusted wellies in the city centre, was also mentioned. It suggested such issues were at the mercy of weather conditions on the site.

It added: "The issues around mud on the roads around the site and in the city centre and discarded footwear in the city centre which occurred in 2016 did not arise in 2017 given the better weather. Memorandums of understanding agreed for both areas remain in place for this year."

Coun Ryk Downes, who is on the committee, defended making the decision so close to the event itself, and insisted this is normal procedure.

"This has been an established event for many years - we have a debrief every year where we talk about issues," he said. "This is an ongoing process through the years, and the issues we raise have to be dealt with.

"If something came up that could not be resolved in time, we would not grant the licence, but I am not aware of any objections.

"We need to make sure it's as safe as it can be - it's a great festival."

The licensing committee meets in Civic Hall on Tuesday, August 14, at 10am.

Leeds Festival is set to take place at Bramham Park from 24-26 August.