Basingstoke council committee dismisses entrance fee plan for Basingstoke Live 2014 (From Basingstoke Gazette)
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Basingstoke council committee dismisses entrance fee plan for Basingstoke Live 2014
BASINGSTOKE Live should remain a free, subsidised event next year, a borough council committee has recommended.
Members of the community wellbeing committee said this year’s Basingstoke Live event had been “a huge success”, and they did not want to change it by charging to make up a £27,000 shortfall in running costs.
After considering a report on the two-day event in War Memorial Park, they agreed that ticketing would involve extra expense in administration and insurance and, based on evidence from other authorities, could potentially reduce the audience by up to 60 per cent.
Members also backed the report’s suggestion that charging could result in less backing from volunteer organisers.
Instead, they recommended that £27,000 for fencing and security be injected by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council into the budget for next year’s festival so it could carry on.
Committee chairman Councillor Robert Taylor said: “I think we are all in favour of an unticketed event that will continue. Long may it continue and grow because it is a great credit to the borough.”
Along with other members, he said he had visited this year’s event, which took place over July 13 and 14, and had been very impressed, even, he added, if the rock music had “done my head in”. He said: “It was a superb event.”
The committee heard from Diane Hayward, borough council strategic and economic development manager, that 36,000 people had attended and there had been none of the anti-social behaviour that blighted a previous event.
Ms Hayward’s report said Basingstoke Live cost £130,000 to stage which, after income from traders’ concessions, meant the taxpayer picked up a £90,000 bill.
Councillors suggested sponsorship and concession income should continue to be pursued, without changing the nature of the event.
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