London’s Victoria Park is set to have its event capacities increased following approval from Tower Hamlets Council.
The council has approved a decision to allow Victoria Park’s medium and large events to increase in size from 500 and 5,000 to 5,000 and 20,000 people respectively.
Major events at the park such as AEG Presents’ All Points East (pictured) and Field Day, which remain capped at a 50,000 capacity, will be held more frequently – from 10 to 12 events each year, the council said.
The decision has been met with protests from residents who have demanded the council carry out a consultation on the mayor’s plans for the park.
A petition read: “This is a terrible idea that would ruin our park, our neighbourhood and our environment. It would mean more noise, more traffic, more waste and more pollution in our area.
“It would also mean less access and less enjoyment of the park for us, especially for our families and children who need the park during the summer holidays. We cannot let this happen. We need to stand up for our park, our rights and our voice.”
The council said, “The proposed changes would allow for a wider range of events to be considered by the council and boost local businesses and provide a wider range of things for local people to do and enjoy in the park.”
Elsewhere in London, Clapham Common will not host a Festival Republic event this year, according to community group Friends of Clapham Common, which has previously campaigned against the promoter hosting events there. The park has previously hosted festivals such as South West Four and Electric City.
The announcement comes seven months after a Public Inquiry, held during the summer of 2023, which considered whether it is in the public interest to enclose the Common for events of this size.
The group said in a statement, “Events on this scale remove the largest area of open space on the Common in the height of summer, during school holidays and disproportionately affect the 50% of local residents who have no direct access to green spaces.
“Local residents have been forced to deal with excessive levels of sound pollution, litter and disruption, which has generated hundreds of complaints and caused distress to those closest to the site.”