Apologies for the lack of posts but the day job has been calling.
Over the past few days a couple of executive decisions taken by Mayor Lutfur Rahman have caught the eye. I’ll deal with his version of Educational Maintenance Allowance in another post but for the moment, let’s look at his news for Victoria Park.
On October 20, he signed off a deal with events organiser Live Nation to run gigs in Victoria Park during the Olympics next year. The decision document (it’s well worth a read) reveals much longer than anticipated negotiations with Live Nation over the past year and that there remains a significant degree of uncertainty about what will happen.
However, what we do know is this:
- Live Nation, with the blessing of the council, will cordon off with giant hoardings a large section of the park for six weeks next summer
- In the week prior to the Opening Ceremony on July 27, Live Nation are looking at staging three “commercial gigs” (ie you buy tickets) each with a 30,000 capacity. The report raises some doubt over whether these will actually take place, however.
- On each day from from July 27 until the closing ceremony on August 12, there will be “free to access” gigs/screens/events that will be licensed from noon until 12.30am. These events will be ticketed but they will be free. There will be a capacity of 30,000 people at any one time. The council has negotiated a daily allocation of 4,000 tickets for Tower Hamlets residents who will have to pay a £3.50 booking fee for a maximum of four each.
- Live Nation estimate 1.2million visitors to their Victoria Park events during the Games.
- The gigs and events will be aimed at “young people, families and sport” (note that older people who have paid taxes all their lives don’t seem to be welcome, they’ll just have to endure the noise – welcome to One Tower Hamlets). There will be an allocation of tickets for athletes.
- Tower Hamlets council, the GLA and Live Nation will each contribute £100,000 for “the programme content”.