Harringay online

Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

From David Schmitz, Liberal Democrat Councillor for Harringay Ward:


Although the agreement between the Council and the organisers for the holding of this event between 3rd and 12th August appears to be a done deal, there are some details whcih remain to be worked out, and which are the subject of a discussion now until the 29th February.

Until my colleague, Cllr Richard Wilson, intervened, the consultation (which had been publicised only by the display of a few posters in Finsbury Park in the middle of winter) was due to end tomorrow.

The latest situation is helpfully summarised by a senior Council officer in an email sent to Councillors and to the Friends of Finsbury Park. I am reproducing it below in the hope that this will encourage a wide participation in the consultation exercise.

The letter refers to an events agreement made between the Council and the organisers in March 2011. I have requested a copy of this, so that anyone wishing to comment will know what it is that the organisers have already agreed to.

The Friends of Finsbury Park have already prepared a response, and it would be helpful if they would publish it here.

Anyway, the letter from the Council is as follows:


Dear Councillors and Chair of Friends of Finsbury Park,


I am writing to you today to clarify the recent letters we sent to you regarding the Jamaica Village Event. Councillor Wilson has raised concern about the purpose of the letters and the input we were seeking. On review of what was sent it is clear that given the special one off nature of the event further explanation and direction would be very helpful to you in preparing a response.


Progress so far:-


Land use agreement – In late 2010 consideration was given to the approach by Jamaica Village Ltd to hold a festival within Finsbury Park in summer 2012. Discussions took place at this time with Members, Friends of Finsbury Park and Fin Future. Ultimately a report was prepared for the Councils Cabinet and in 21st December 2010  the Council agreed to hire Finsbury Park to Jamaica Village Ltd for an event to take place from the 3rd August to 12th August 2012. This decision included extended the number of commercial hire events in Finsbury park from five to 10 as a one off during the Olympic Year.


At the end of March 2011 an agreement was finalised with Jamaica Village and in addition to the normal legal provision sets out conditions under the following headings:-

  • ·         Hirers Obligations
  • ·         The Owners rights
  • ·         The Owners Obligations
  • ·         Operational Plan
  • ·         The Attraction and Times
  • ·         Music and Sound
  • ·         Care for the park
  • ·         Grassed Areas and trees
  • ·         Parks Infrastructure
  • ·         Vehicles Plant and Equipment Movement
  • ·         Litter and Waste Management
  • ·         Signage and Wayfinding
  • ·         Sanitary Conveniences
  • ·         Health and Safety
  • ·         Insurance and Indemnity


These various conditions are based on previous feedback received from Members, the Friends group and other lessons learnt from holding previous events.


Event Licence Application


Following the signing of the Land Use Agreement, Jamaica Village Ltd have turned their attention to gaining a licence for their event through the normal statutory process.


Prior to submitting the application discussion have been held with statutory authorities to seek guidance to improve the planning of the event. Contributions have been made by all three emergency services, Transport for London, noise control, emergency planning, local NHS, food safety, health and safety and Olympic Event Co-ordinators.

The licence application was heard at two licensing meetings in December this year.

At the meeting the considered the period of the event and this was confirmed as the ten days from the 3rd August.

The event will run from 11.00 to 23.00hrs every day.  It will be a ticketed event, but details of the acts that will be appearing and the costs of the tickets are still being worked on.  It is being organised by a company called Live Nation which have extensive experience of running festivals and concerts including previous events in Finsbury Park.

The Police asked for a number of measures to be put in place for the event and these have been incorporated into the license conditions. 

Limits on the level of noise which can be heard in the surrounding residential area has been imposed as part of the license conditions. Live music on the main stage will cease by 20:00 each day.  Live music will be played for a 3 hour period each day. All regulated entertainment will cease by 22:30, accepting televised sports on screens up to 23.00.

Transport for London do not foresee any problems with transport capacity. It is hoped that by the main stage ceasing at 20.00 that there will be gradual dispersal rather than everyone leaving at the same time.


What Next


Over the coming months we will be working with the event organisers to draw up the detail of the event operational plan to ensure that the regular park users and activities are fully considered and that timely communication can take place with regarding any changes to access with the park. We would therefore welcome at this stage your initial thoughts and observations that you would like included in our deliberations with the organisers.


In addition as part of the Land Use Agreement we secured 4000 free tickets for the event which we will be distributing to those who otherwise would not be able to afford to attend the event. If you have any thoughts about a worthy group or idea to distribute tickets then please feel free to include this in your response also.


If you could come back to me by the end of February 29th that would be greatly appreciated.


I have attached a site plan for your information.


Kind regards




Simon Farrow

Head of Client Services

Leisure Services

Haringey Council

Tags for Forum Posts: 2012, finsbury park, jamaica village, olympics

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Replies to This Discussion


I've read through the above & assume that this correspondence is the outcome of a concern (or more than one). If I'm right it would useful to know what people are concerned about as I'm none the wiser!


In brief, the concerns are that this is a 10-day event which will attract, so it is predicted, 15,000 people a day. Alcohol will be served, and music and broadcasts from the Olympics will be played for a substantial amount of time. Such an event naturally gives rise to concerns about public safety, noise and access to the park by persons who wish to make normal use of it.

The festival involves the closing off of a substantial part of a public park during a period - namely the school summer holidays - when large numbers of people will want to use it. Moreover, if one includes the setting-up and dismantling times, the portion of the park which is affected will give only limited access to the public for 4 weeks.

In order for the festival to be a success, there needs to be an engagement with local residents, and that is what it is hoped this consultation will achieve.

I am attaching a copy of the site plan.

I will confirm tomorrow the person to whom consultation responses should be directed.


I can't see any problem in displaying the plan.

I've looked at the plan, the perimeter seems larger than any other event I've ever seen in the park.

No access over the bridge from Oxford Road?

I cycle regularly through the park to the secure cycle lock up, that access seems to be closed.

I've just had a word with Mr. Farrow from the Council.

The best way to send a consultation response is to parks@haringey.gov.uk with "Jamaica Village" appearing in the subject line.

Access via the Oxford Road bridge will not be affected. The area, from which access by the public is to be restricited, is limited to the area within the dotted black line on the plan. The purpose of the red line is to define the area from which people can be excuded if the persons holding the alcohol licence form the view that it is necessary to eject them from the venue. The public will not be excluded from the area which lies between the red line and the dotted black one.

David Schmitz

Liberal Democrat Councillor for Harringay Ward

this blocks my route to work along the Seven Sisters Road side. That park driveway is a valuable refuge from motorcycle buzzing and veering minicabs in the bus lane. It also allows me to avoid the dangerous Manor House right-hand turn from Green Lanes into Seven Sisters road.

Finsbury Park events always begin by blocking off that halfway path and the main driveway so it's no longer passable by cycle.If you're lucky (ie with the circuses) you can trundle around the perimeter fence slowly through the pock-marked grass, or exit at the halfway path. Here that won't be an option.

I really wish that just once, they'd consider that route, from Green Lanes to the Finsbury Park Road exit less disposable than they customarily do.

I'd imagine it's hundreds of cyclists per day use the tarmac roads that cross the park (maybe Haringey's Cycling Campaign can organise a count), and blocking these seems an oversight every time there's an event that privately rents this bit of our park.
For a 10 day event you can count on it being 18-20 days with the build-up and breakdown phases.
It can't be hard to make provision for this. The company in Northumberland doing the plans can't be expected to know what it's like on the ground. Who at the council is representing all the park's daily users?

Is the large Jamaican community in this area being consulted?



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