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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

‘No toilets’ music promoter makes application for permanent Finsbury Park concert licence

SJM concerts, one of the leading music promoters in the UK has applied to Haringey Council for a licence to allow it to put on live and recorded music events, as well as supply alcohol, seven days a week throughout the year.

SJM concerts promotes over 2,500 concerts a year across the UK. Their impressive roster of artists includes The Stone Roses, Take That, Oasis, Radiohead, Coldplay, Arctic Monkeys, Robbie Williams, Foo Fighters, The Killers, Stereophonics, Snow Patrol, ACDC, Paramore, Spice Girls, The Prodigy, JLS, Muse and Peter Kay.

Simon Moran MD of SJM Concerts

Simon Moran, Managing Director of SJM also runs a management company, whose clients include the Script, and is a director of the Academy Music Group of venues. He is also a shareholder in Future Records, a joint-venture label with Gary Barlow. Moran also owns rugby league club  Warrington Wolves.

Last year SJM posted a profit of £10.6m and expect a ‘significant increase’ in business in the current financial year. 

But not all is rosy at SJM. Earlier this year the company was slammed for poor management at The Stone Roses concert in Heaton Park, Manchester.

Residents were upset that things promised by SJM didn’t seem to work. Residents who live around the park were assured that residents’ parking would be preserved. But claimed that didn’t worked. There was also concern about how loud the music was, particularly when the Stone Roses were on stage. 

Strange but true: Concert goers were photographed urinating up against residents' garages near Heaton Park this summer. Picture: Manchester Evening News

But the loudest voices were raised over complaints of the area being turned into ‘one big public toilet’.  Amidst claims that the organisers had failed to provide adequate portaloos, Residents were angered at the antics of revellers, urinating and worse in and round local properties.

Now residents around Finsbury Park fear that N4 could be about to suffer the same fate.

Madeline Palm, co-chairman of the Woodstock Road Residents’ Association, was reported as fearing the loss of residents’ power of objection: “We would not have any say on what actually would be put on in the park, whether it’s going to be chamber music or pop music.

But Haringey Council is seeking to assure residents that there would not be a free-for-all if the licence is granted.

A spokesman said: “Promoters SJM have applied for a premises licence for Finsbury Park which is currently under consideration. Even if this is granted they would still need to obtain a contract for the use of park space in the first instance for each particular event.

Residents have until November 15 to comment on the application.


Tags for Forum Posts: finsbury park, finsbury park events, stone roses concert

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The thing that concerns me about this, is the creeping privatisation that the council has favoured for several years. It seems that many assets that have been paid for in the past by the public - and widely used by the general public - are considered for monetizing in some way.

To the extent that the park is fenced off for private use and private profit, ordinary members of the public are denied the quiet use and enjoyment of the park that they once expected.

The council could consider selling off all the Borough's parks for housing or for commercial buildings such as offices. Why don't they do that to extract the maximum income or capital receipts?

The part-privatisation of the park does not come cost-free. Apart from other disadvantages, it denies full use to non-paying citizens,.

Parks, like libraries, are one of the more basic functions of a council. An effective council recognizes that its first responsibility is providing services, for ordinary citizens, and not facilitating the commercial use of the Borough's parks.

I worked the Oasis gig in the park many years ago and from what I remember it all went off pretty well. however I also went to the Roses gig in June and it was a shambles-3 bars for 72,000 people and all the toilets clumped together in the same area. add to that the terrible weather and the fact there was only one transport way in and out me the park it was just chaotic. However, I think Finsbury Park does have a lot more going for it, not just in location, and Think I would be cautiously happy to have a limited number of events on my doorstep throughout the year.

Excellent news...festivals we can stumble home from are always welcome...but i think we should get at least priority booking to compensate for the inconvenience- it was really frustrating having Rage Against The Machine playing in the park and not being able to get tickets, especially as the heavy handed policing meant we couldn't even hear the music in our back garden as normal because it was drowned out by police helecopters hovering over our house! 

The off licenses in the area must be rubbing their hands in glee

Andrew Greenway has made two interesting F.o.I. (Freedom of Information Act) requests about Finsbury Park via the website WhatDoTheyKnow. He wants to know the cost of maintaining the tennis courts; and also the income and costs of events in Finsbury Park.

I don't know Andrew, but if anyone's interested in seeing the answers he gets, take a look at this site on 3 October, the last date when answers are due. Or you can register with the site - for free - and click to "Follow" his questions. In which case you'll get an email when the answers arrive. Or if someone else adds a factual annotation to assist him. (The site isn't intended to for giving opinions.)

Obviously, as this is a public park the information should automatically and routinely be available from the Council. Maybe it is?

(Tottenham Hale ward councillor)



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