Blackheath Events - Council Back Down on Multiple Application

Following the withdrawal of the permanent, blanket-style licence application for up to 5 events and 60 days a year on Circus Field, proposed by Greenwich Council, the first one-off licence application was submitted within days and has now been approved.

Speaking about the withdrawal of the controversial 5 events licence Blackheath Westcombe Councillor Geoff Brighty, who opposed it, said "This was a strong community effort which made Greenwich Council backdown. There was enormous concern about the nature of the application. I’ve rarely seen so much opposition to a licensing application. Residents are not opposed to all events but do want to have a say.

The kind of open ended, blanket application proposed may have had administrative advantages for Greenwich Council but, if allowed, it would have meant outside event organisers applying to the Council to use Circus Field with no meaningful further consultation with residents – permanently. This wasn't right and, understandably, the
approach taken by Greenwich Council raised the issue of trust between the local authority bureaucracy and residents.

Blackheath also needs a joined up events policy involving both Lewisham and Greenwich Councils and I will continue to press for that. It should include an upper limit for the number of events across the Heath

The first one off application has now been granted a licence under the normal procedures and the children's production ‘In the Night GardenLive’ will be on Circus Field from 20th May – 12th June 2016.   While there were some concerns about aspects of the event the Council and the event producers maintained it will have little impact on residents and other users of the Heath.