Published: 3rd Sep 2018

Cash-strapped councils have been accused of over-exploiting public parks by hiring them out for music festivals. Research presented last week at the Royal Geographical Society Annual International Conference claims that parks in London, in particular, are being hired out by private corporations for music festivals, thus restricting access for members of the public. According to urban geographer Dr Andrew Smith from the University of Westminster, there were 10 multi-day music festivals staged in London’s parks this summer, as well as many other day-long events. He said councils should reassess the number of festivals they permit and warned against relying on revenue from festivals to pay for park services. ‘London parks are prestigious spaces that attract lucrative hire fees, but this inevitably has a knock-on effect for park use,’ said Dr Smith. ‘Local people complain about noise and disruption but there’s also a wider ideological concern about privatisation.’ Dr Smith claimed … (To read the full article, subscribe below)