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Fury at chaos during Stone Roses gigs in Finsbury Park

PUBLISHED: 14:01 20 July 2013

Ian Brown performing with The Stone Roses at V Festival last year. Picture: PA/Yui Mok.

Ian Brown performing with The Stone Roses at V Festival last year. Picture: PA/Yui Mok.

PA Archive/Press Association Images

Thousands of revellers caused chaos in Finsbury Park during the Stone Roses concerts and councillors are still counting a mass of complaints from residents, it emerged this week.

More than 40,000 partygoers attended the two gigs, where revellers started brawls, urinated in the park and the surrounding streets, caused travel chaos and disturbed local residents with foul-mouthed language into the early hours.

Dog walkers have even complained that the park is still “sticky” nearly a month on from the concerts, where fans reportedly urinated at will against fences and all over the grass.

Severe overcrowding was also mentioned as Highbury East councillor Terry Stacy, the leader of the Liberal Democrat opposition on Islington Council, said he had received scores of complaints about the concerts on June 7 and 8.

He said: “The area turned into a mass car park and fights broke out in the streets. It was a complete failure of the tri-borough agreement between Islington, Hackney and Haringey to control such events. The councils should put into practice what they preach.”

Cars were also reportedly parking on green spaces, with no traffic enforcement taking place in the area over the weekend.

While the park itself lies in Haringey, the three councils work together to oversee large-scale events there as access to the site can be gained through any of those boroughs.

Caledonian Cllr Paul Convery, Islington’s executive member for community Safety, added: “Somebody underestimated the excitable crowd and the unruly elements.

“We were not at all happy with the way the event was handled.”

He added that the three boroughs are working on a new strategy that will deal with the problems at Finsbury Park.

The organisers, SJM Concerts, have already faced wipespread criticism from Islington residents concerning the shows they run at the Emirates Stadium.

Their plan to double the number of concerts they stage at Arsenal FC’s home ground over the summer has already triggered 2,500 objections.

“This is the biggest resistance I can ever remember,” said Cllr Convery.

He added that summer gives residents a respite from the football crowds and because the concerts run late into the night, more people have been complaining.

During the band’s performances the concert arena was partitioned off, but the chaos soon spilled out in the surrounding areas and streets during the gigs, which finished at 11pm.

A Haringey Council spokesman said: “We liaised with Islington and Hackney councils to make sure arrangements were in place for road closures, parking, licensing and noise to limit the impact on residents.”

SJM Concerts did not respond to a request for comment before the Gazette went to press.


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