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After Ed Sheeran success, could more big acts be coming to Chantry Park?

PUBLISHED: 16:00 27 August 2019

The crowd may have been huge to see Ed Sheeran on stage at Chantry Park, but the transport to and from the venue worked well  Picture: ARCHANT

The crowd may have been huge to see Ed Sheeran on stage at Chantry Park, but the transport to and from the venue worked well Picture: ARCHANT

Archant

More than 140,000 people saw Ed Sheeran's shows at Chantry Park on the last four nights of his two-year world tour, the longest in rock and roll history.

Detailed plans worked out by Ipswich council, bus and rail companies ensured that access to the park for the concerts went comparatively smoothly - and extra trains lined up to take concert goers home to London, Essex, and Norwich operated without incident.

All that has left people asking if other major concerts could be lined up for the park. However bosses at the council said they needed to catch their breath and look at the lessons from this weekend before planning anything further.

However if any promoters did approach them - they would know the town could cope!

The Council's Chief Operating Officer, Helen Pluck, said: "We are pleased with the way the events unfolded - they didn't just happen but involved a great deal of organisation, with several IBC teams coming together to ensure the concerts were safe for an estimated 140,000 people, that traffic flowed smoothly and concert-goers were able to both enter and leave the site safely and in reasonable time.

"We worked with our partners to ensure there was a wide range of travel options, including parking, shuttle buses and park and ride.

"Each night we had teams at the park and at Grafton House, monitoring CCTV to assist with traffic and pedestrian movements. Lost property, reuniting children with their parents and any number of issues that arise at events like these.

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"Catering for such huge numbers over four nights inevitably causes some disruption to people living nearby and we thank them for their co-operation and patience. I am glad that many turned up to the public areas of the park last night to listen to the music.

"Finally, I am proud of the different teams that made this such a success and the fact that one Twitter user said 'Well done IpswichGov, you did your lad proud' summed up how we are all feeling this morning."

There were a few complaints about disruption from people living in the Chantry area - but most messages were about the success of the planning for the concerts.

James Steward, Greater Anglia's Area Customer Service Manager, said: "We're extremely pleased at how smoothly the event went and that so many people chose to travel to and from the Ed Sheeran concerts by Greater Anglia.

"Over the four days we ran nearly 30 additional trains and hundreds of extra carriages to get people home. We worked very closely with the organisers at Ipswich Borough Council to find out where people were travelling from and all of our additional services were well used.

"The simple queuing system at the station after the event was complimented by many customers making their way home, services were very busy and overall feedback has been very positive.

"A lot of planning and hard work goes into organising an event of this size as well as running so many extra trains and we would like to thank all of our staff and volunteers who worked over the weekend and everyone who chose to travel on our services."

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