Ipswich council to look at security after queues build up at music festival

PUBLISHED: 16:27 08 July 2019 | UPDATED: 16:27 08 July 2019

Long queues built up at the Soqne Street entrance to Christchurch Park. Picture: PAUL GEATER

Long queues built up at the Soqne Street entrance to Christchurch Park. Picture: PAUL GEATER


Bosses at Ipswich council are to look again at security arrangements for Music in the Park after long queues built up at this year’s event on Sunday.

About 25,000 music lovers headed to the park for the huge festival - but there were long queues at the main Soane Street entrance as bags were checked to make sure no one was taking any glass bottles in.

It took some people more than half an hour of queuing to get through the gates - but once inside there were activities for all the family.

As well as several stages of music, there was also a funfair near the Westerfield Road entrance to the park and stalls and other attractions near Christchurch Mansion itself.

A council spokesman said officials would be looking again at the security arrangements to see if there was a way of speeding things up next year.

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He said: "Running a safe event is our top priority and I am sure people will understand the need for security checks.

"We do this in order to ensure that prohibited items such as sharp objects, weapons, fireworks and glass bottles are not taken into the park.

"We consider Ipswich Music Day to be unique in that as well as being the largest one day free to enter music festival; we allow visitors to bring their own food and drink, but this does mean that are more bags that need to be checked.

"We appreciate queues did build up on occasions and we will consider how we can improve this next year, but safety will always come first.

"As we approach next year's 30th event we will of course be reminding visitors that there are multiple entrances to Christchurch Park, including Bolton Lane, Westerfield Rd, Park Road, Soane St, two gates on Fonnereau Rd, via the Bridleway between Fonnereau Rd and Henley Rd and through the Arboretum."

The number of visitors to the park was similar to that in recent years - since accurate counting started the figures have been less than those reported in the earlier years of the event.

Planning for next year's event is expected to get under way soon - Ipswich Music Day continues to be the largest free music festival in the region attracting visitors and bands from a wide area into the heart of the town, and bringing their spending power with them.

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