Maseratis will lead CarFest parade

Basingstoke Gazette: Chris Evans and Jody Scheckter at last year's CarFest Chris Evans and Jody Scheckter at last year's CarFest

A PARADE of 100 Maseratis will travel through Overton as part of an annual summer festival.

The organisers of CarFest, held at Laverstoke Park Farm, updated Overton Parish Council on the plans for this year’s event, due to be held over the August bank holiday weekend to raise money for BBC Children in Need.

Neil Levene, from Brand Events, said minor changes had been made, including the car parade starting at 12.45pm from the farm, rather than 11am as it did last year.

He said: “We had the Aston Martins last year but they set off a little too early and there were still day visitors arriving.”

Mr Levene said traffic management would be similar to last year, with one-way measures put in place on various roads around the site.

He added that there was a problem with HGVs meeting head-on last year, causing a build-up of traffic, so to combat this no HGVs will be allowed access to the site before 1pm on August 25.

Councillor Peter Hutchinson asked if there could be an amendment to the traffic plan to allow for the road leading from Litchfield to be two-way on the Friday morning, adding: “It’s a weekday not a bank holiday. We feel it should be two-way that day.”

Mr Levene responded: “I think you make a very valid point and I will ask the question. I can’t explain why it was put in at 7am.”

Overton villager Tony Williams questioned why several of the footpaths had to close in the lead up to, and during, the festival.

He said: “Unless CarFest people can explain more convincingly than they have in the past, then they should leave footpaths open. If there’s any concern about traffic or unauthorised vehicles entering the site, they should deal with that and not inconvenience the local people.”

Mr Levene said: “I wasn’t aware that anyone had any objections to it until I heard from you. I think we need to take that seriously because you make a valid point. We probably put it in because it stops people walking into the festival site unchecked, which is an important licensing objective.”

He promised that Brand Events would review the footpath plan to see if all the closures were necessary.

Clare Scheckter, who owns Laverstoke Park Farm with her husband Jody, said that 2,500 people from Overton have tickets for this year’s CarFest.

She said plans were being made for people without tickets into the festival to be able watch aerial displays from Popham Airfield again.

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