A NEW website designed by an experienced production managers aims to inform festival-goers of all ages and experience levels of the challenges facing them at open-air events.
Festival Safe, launched by Jon Drape, is a response to what he feels are patterns of customer behaviour at festivals such as Parklife (80,000), Festival No. 6 (15,000), Y Not? (29,000) and Kendal Calling (25,000), produced by his company Ground Control for promoter/owner Global.
“Festivals spend millions of pounds trying to improve safety for customers, ranging from the police and welfare to drug intervention,” he says. “But people still come to harm on festival sites. I felt there was a need for a central resource.
“We’ve seen the demographic of festival-goers get broader than ever including older people coming for the first time, as well as the new generation arriving. This brings the information together for all those different groups and lets the audience help themselves.”
Common audience problems are dehydration, even on less hot days, unsuitable footwear for longer-than-expected walks and drug and alcohol abuse, while first-timers may often bring a cheap tent, inadequate for harsh weather.
“We welcome feedback from stakeholders including welfare organisations, crowd management companies and festival organisers,” he says, emphasising that they can contribute information to the not-for-profit site via a password system, link to advice on their own sites and promote Festival Safe at their events.