Organisers vow raves will go on
by This is Brigthon and Hove
Copyright: This is Brigthon and Hove
Rave organisers have vowed to continue holding illegal parties despite a crackdown by police. Three events were raided and shut down on New Year’s Eve. But one organiser has pledged: “These events will not stop, even with a new intolerance policy from the police.”
The two sides may now meet for “dialogue” on the issues. Police raided one rave in Shoreham and two in Hove while 1,000 people were enjoying New Year celebrations.
Superintendent Graham Cox, head of Hove and Shoreham police, said the venues, an underground car park and two factory buildings, were death traps and the Holland disco fire which killed 12 showed the kind of disaster police and other agencies feared. But Adrian Taylor, spokesman for Brighton United Systems which organised the New Year’s rave in Fonthill Road, Hove, insisted there were trained first aiders on site and eight operational fire exits.
He said: “I am not sure on what grounds the police stopped this event because it was not by definition an illegal rave. it was in a fully-enclosed space, thus not contravening the 1994 Criminal Justice Act in respect of ‘raves’.
“It is a shame, while admittedly some of these type of events do sail close to the wind on safety issues, this one in particular was well thought out and executed. The police, however, where blind to this and ruined the evening for many hundreds of people.
“May I wish all members of Hove and Shoreham police a very happy New Year and hope that one day they will actually start to realise that these events will not stop. The last ten years’ experience points that way so perhaps a dialogue should be entered into.”
Mr Cox said he would be happy to discuss the issues if the organisers contacted him. But he described the spokesman as “arrogant”. He said the organisers were not qualified to decide what was safe or not and, he insisted, the venue was completely unsuitable.
He said: “They broke into a building that was just 20 yards from private homes. “If they want to hold a rave or party then they should do it properly and apply for a public entertainments licence.”