Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafesj

Post to this Thread - Printer Friendly - Home
Page: [1] [2] [3]


Weymouth Folk Festival (UK)

Related threads:
How old is Brit trad of music in pubs? (88)
PEL: Mummers stopped Cerne Abbas (101)
PEL: demo - pictures (14)
BS: Is Kim Howells an arsehole? (65)
Licensing Bill - How will it work ? (331)
A little more news on Licensing (158)
Killed by the PEL system Part 2 (93)
The New Star Session R.I.P. PELs (55)
PEL Problems in Hull (39)
PELs: Are we over-reacting? (74)
Circus PELs - I told you so! (16)
PEL Mk II: UK Government at it again (24)
PEL stops session in Cheshire (78)
Lyr Add: PEL Song: A PEL Protest (Julie Berrill) (27)
PELs - Letters to important folk. (50)
Sign a E Petition to 10 Downing St PELs (506) (closed)
PEL: Architect)?) Andrew Cunningam (11)
Licensing Bill moves on -OUR FUTURE (286) (closed)
UK Government to license Morris Dancing (68) (closed)
EFDSS on the Licensing Bill - PELs. (38)
PEL: Doc Roew gets through to Minister !!! (11)
PELs Dr Howells on Mike Harding Show. (106)
From Eliza Carthy & Mike Harding PELs (36)
Common's Early Day Motion 331 (new)(PEL) (69)
DANCING OUTBREAK! and definition. PELs (16)
PEL threads. links to all of them. (50)
BS: Village Greens and licences (3) (closed)
PEL's: News Blackout! (53)
PEL: Billy Bragg BBC1 Monday nite (17)
PELs: Exemptions? (107)
Petition Clarification (PELs) (9)
PEL debate on BBC TV Now. (6)
further 'dangers' with the PEL (24)
Stupid Music Law. (8)
Howells (now) asks for help PELs (68)
PEL : MPs' replies to your e-mails (40)
PEL: Where does Charles Kennedy stand? (10)
PEL: NCA Campaign free Seminar (18)
PEL: Howells on BBCR1 TONIGHT! (45)
PEL : Hardcopy Petition (44)
PELs Government v MU & lawyers (48)
PEL Pages (5)
Human Rights Committee AGREES! PELs (20)
Churches now exempt from PELs (55)
Lyr Add: PEL 'Freedom to sing' song (12)
Lyr Add: PEL Protest song (14)
Can YOU help The Blue Bell session? (9)
PEL: Urgent soundbites - CBC interview (25)
BS: Kim Howells, but NOT PELS for a change (8) (closed)
PEL: Billy Bragg on Question Time 6th Feb (15)
Kim Howells (PEL) (85)
PEL - A Reply From An MP. (22)
BS: What is PEL? (3) (closed)
PEL - 'Demo' Fleetwood 30th Jan 2003 (25)
PEL – Robb Johnson on R3, 1215h, 26/1. (8)
New PEL. An alternative argument. (31)
PEL: DEMO 27 JANUARY 2003 (95)
PEL: VERY URGENT - CONTACT yr MP TODAY (46)
Poet against PEL - welcome Simon (10)
PEL: First Lord's defeat of the bill (10)
PEL - 'Demo' Fleetwood 23rd Jan (5)
kim howells does it again (PEL) (69)
PEL UK - Unemployed Artist Dancer - look (22)
PEL hit squads! (16)
PELs for beginners (26)
PEL: Latest rumour/lie? It's gone away? (3)
PEL: but not music (9)
Folking Lawyers (PEL) (26)
MU campaign - Freedom of Expression (36)
PEL- Enforcement: How? (8)
PEL: Inner working of Minister's minds? (9)
PROTEST DEMO WITH GAG (PEL) (10)
PEL: What activities to be criminalised? (29)
A Criminal Conviction for Christmas? (PEL) (45)
PEL - Idea (34)
Glastonbury Festival Refused PEL (5)
MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music (23)
Sessions under threat in UK? (101)
PELs of the past (13)
BS: PELs and roller skates. (1) (closed)
PELs UK Music needs your HELP (64)
Fighting the PEL (43)
URGENT MESSAGE FOR THE SHAMBLES (22)
Lyr Add: The Folk Musician's Lament (a PEL protest (2)
BS: Queen's speech, and licensing reforms (32) (closed)
PELs UK BBC Breakfast TV Monday (1)
PEL: Licensing Reform? (46)
BS: PELs in Scotland (12) (closed)
BS: The Cannon Newport Pagnell UK - no PEL! (18) (closed)
Action For Music. PELs (28)
Killed by the PEL system (66)
TV sport vs live music in pubs. HELP (6)
PEL and the Law: 'Twas ever thus (14)
EFDSS letter to UK Government HELP! (2)
24 July 2002 Day of Action - PELs (77)
Help: PELs & The Folk Image (12)
Official 'No tradition' 2 (PELs) (55)
Is this man killing folk music? (19)
We have PEL - Rose & Crown Ashwell, 23/6 (2)
BS: Vaults Bar, Bull ,Stony Stratford - PEL (4) (closed)
What is folk ? - OFFICIAL (26)
Official: No tradition of music in pubs (92)
UK catters be useful TODAY (70)
Help Change Music In My Country (102)
PEL-More questions (7)
NEWS for visitors wanting to play in UK (56)
Nominate for a Two in a Bar Award -UK (11)
USA- HELP Where is Dr Howells? (13)
BS: URGENT UK contact your MP TONITE (18) (closed)
ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP? (97)
Write an Email for Shambles? Part 2 (75)
UK TV Cove Session/The Shambles (24)
All UK folkies take note - the law!!! (68)
BS: Tenterden weekend (and PELs) (11) (closed)
PEL (UK) (25)
Will you write an Email for Shambles? (111) (closed)
Important - Attention All Mudcatters (99)
Council Bans Morris Part 2 (73)
Council Bans Morris Dancing (103)
Day of action for live music 19th July (44)
Traditional activities and the law (13)
Sessions under threat in UK PART 2 (15)
Making Music Is Illegal. (56)
Urgent Help Required!! Threat to UK Sessions (11)


IanC 13 Jan 03 - 12:45 PM
vindelis 13 Jan 03 - 01:23 PM
cockney 13 Jan 03 - 01:29 PM
The Shambles 13 Jan 03 - 03:30 PM
The Shambles 13 Jan 03 - 03:45 PM
The Shambles 13 Jan 03 - 03:53 PM
The Shambles 13 Jan 03 - 04:29 PM
The Shambles 14 Jan 03 - 05:28 AM
breezy 14 Jan 03 - 07:57 AM
The Shambles 14 Jan 03 - 08:30 AM
The Shambles 14 Jan 03 - 04:54 PM
vindelis 14 Jan 03 - 06:21 PM
The Shambles 15 Jan 03 - 03:51 PM
pavane 16 Jan 03 - 07:54 AM
vindelis 17 Jan 03 - 03:41 PM
clansfolk 17 Jan 03 - 04:53 PM
The Shambles 17 Jan 03 - 05:21 PM
The Shambles 18 Jan 03 - 04:44 PM
The Shambles 19 Jan 03 - 05:38 AM
GUEST 19 Jan 03 - 05:47 AM
The Shambles 19 Jan 03 - 08:54 AM
Mr Red 19 Jan 03 - 12:30 PM
nickp 20 Jan 03 - 10:03 AM
vindelis 20 Jan 03 - 12:53 PM
The Shambles 21 Jan 03 - 08:19 AM
The Shambles 24 Jan 03 - 05:04 PM
The Shambles 24 Jan 03 - 09:11 PM
The Shambles 25 Jan 03 - 08:37 AM
The Shambles 25 Jan 03 - 10:05 AM
The Shambles 26 Jan 03 - 05:21 AM
The Shambles 26 Jan 03 - 06:06 AM
The Shambles 29 Jan 03 - 02:47 PM
The Shambles 02 Feb 03 - 12:28 PM
The Shambles 02 Feb 03 - 12:32 PM
The Shambles 05 Feb 03 - 06:43 AM
GUEST,Don Thompson(of semi pro duo "Sic Transit" 05 Feb 03 - 01:35 PM
BobRik 05 Feb 03 - 04:46 PM
The Shambles 05 Feb 03 - 05:23 PM
BobRik 06 Feb 03 - 05:01 PM
The Shambles 07 Feb 03 - 06:01 AM
Saucy Sal 10 Feb 03 - 09:00 AM
The Shambles 10 Feb 03 - 11:48 AM
The Shambles 10 Feb 03 - 07:19 PM
BobRik 11 Feb 03 - 01:43 AM
The Shambles 11 Feb 03 - 02:20 AM
nickp 11 Feb 03 - 04:13 AM
The Shambles 11 Feb 03 - 05:20 AM
The Shambles 11 Feb 03 - 05:22 AM
nickp 11 Feb 03 - 06:48 AM
The Shambles 11 Feb 03 - 07:31 AM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:













Subject: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: IanC
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 12:45 PM

Who's thinking of going to this?

Weymouth's 2nd Folk Festival
Folk by the sea - 9th to 11th May 2003

Featuring

Oyster Band
Martin Simpson
The Yetties
Last Night FunPlus

Workshops, Concerts, Late Night Sessions, Morris and Appalachian Dancing, Cellidh, Folk Village, Busking, Pub SessionsAll this with the fantastic back drop of the seaside
For more information telephone 01305 838566

© MMII Weymouth and Portland Borough Council


In view of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council's hard line anti-folk attitude (example here, I wonder if we should consider a campaign to boycott it (or at least have a significant protest at it).

Any thoughts?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: vindelis
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 01:23 PM

I will be attending as both a singer and a morris dancer. I am Bagman of the morris side organising the dance programme, (Frome Valley) and, the sister of my partner is one of the leading lights, among the organisers on the song side. I also like to think of myself as a friend of Shambles and attend his Session at the Cove Inn, (when I am NOT out with Frome Valley) on Thursdays. Until this week I also had a session to attend at the New Star. I do hope that this session will rise, like a phoenix from the ashes, somewhere close to home. I doubt that it will be on Portland, as Roger (not Shambles) has been travelling from Weymouth every week for the last 5 - 7 years.

Last year's festival was a wonderful event, and a lot of people have put a lot of had work into this year's festival. Protest againt the PEL by all means, but don't boycott.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: cockney
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 01:29 PM

I have to agree with Vindelis. By boycotting the event you will deprive the local community of music still further. However we should lobby the big names such as Oysterband, to use their collective voice and influence to make the audiences and others aware of what this council's (and this government) attitude to music actually is.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 03:30 PM

The following was sent to all councillors.

23 December 2002
Dear Councillor

LOCAL GOVERNMENT (MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS) ACT 1982.

I am aware that a number of Councillors have again been approached by Mr
Roger Gall on the subject of entertainment licensing and the "two in a bar"
rule. I therefore felt it would be helpful to you to précis the facts of the
matter and subsequent action taken by this Council.

I attach a copy of the joint report of the Licensing Manager and Solicitor
which was presented to Social/Community Committee on 5th June 2001. This
fully explains the background to the case for you. It was resolved at this
meeting that:

(I) the Committee confirmed that the steps taken by the Licensing Manager to
encourage an application from the proprietor of the Cove House Inn,
Portland, for a licence permitting public entertainment on the premises were
appropriate and justified.

(II) Consultation take place with local musicians regarding the law as it
stands at present and on what amendments could usefully be made, and that
these views be collated and passed to the Government.

There has been a considerable exchange of letters, E-mails, etc with Mr Gall
since this time by various Officers of this Council but the Council's
position has remained the same throughout. That is:

Where it comes to the attention of the Council that public entertainment is
being provided without the benefit of a Public Entertainment Licence on
anything more than a one off, accidental basis the Council will intervene to
explain and if necessary enforce licensing legislation. Having made
extensive enquiries we have not identified any other Authority whose
position differs from our own and we consider that action taken by this
Authority is lawful, justified and proportionate. In the absence of a fresh
judicial decision or a change in primary legislation this sets out the
Council's legal position on this point.

Mr Gall was informed some while ago by both myself and the then Director of
Tourism and Corporate Services that this Council had reached a stage where
it was unable to enter into any further discussion on the subject and that
it would not be an appropriate use of Council taxpayers money to do so. This
stance was supported formally by the social and Community Committee.

Mr Gall lodged a complaint against the Council with the Ombudsman. The
Council was totally exonerated by the Ombudsman.

My final point on the matter is that we are now only 12-18 months away from
the newly published Licensing Bill being enacted. The Bill seeks to redress
many of the current anomalies with regard to liquor and entertainment
licensing of which the "two in a bar2 rule is one. I therefore believe that
reopening this well-worn debate at this stage would be counter-productive.

I trust that you find the above information useful, but if you do want more
information, please ask Sue Moore or myself.

Yours sincerely

Tom Grainger
Chief Executive

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council
Tel 01305 838229

tomgrainger@weymouth.gov.uk


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 03:45 PM

This from the Mummers play thread.

Now I find myself in very difficult position. I would really like for this to be a success and for you all to come and enjoy Weymouth and Portland.

However, Weymouth and Portland Borough Council are organising/funding this festival and most of the events take place in their theatre.

This council have used their broad interpretation of the 'two in a bar' exemption to prevent an unpaid folk sessions and are just about to use it against another long-running session. They have also insisted on a licensing condition that banned Morris dancing.

I have been trying for two years to get the councillors to change their current definition of the word 'performer'. A change to a narrower definition, open to them, that would enable these events, not to be classed as public entertainment and be in line with Human Rights legislation, but to no avail.

They do not see this as an important enough issue and are under the
impression that few people care.

Now whether you come and support this council's Folk Festival must be a matter for you. But whether you intend to come or not, can I ask that you make your views known to the Chief Executive Tom Grainger as to how best he can ensure future support from the folk community for their folk festival?

TomGrainger@weymouth.gov.uk

And copied to the local paper.

Dorset Evening Echo newsdesk@dorsetecho

Many thanks


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 03:53 PM

Protest at 'unfair' entertainment licensing laws after musicians quit pub.

LANDLORD MAKES A SONG AND DANCE AT LOST TRADE.

By MATT PITMAN
matt.pitman@dorsetecho.co.uk

A LANDLORD is making a song and dance after folk musicians using his pub quit over "unfair" entertainment laws.
Alan Radford, who runs the new Star Inn in Fortuneswell on Portland with his wife Chistine, claims he has lost trade after a group of musicians walked out in protest at rules which state a licence is needed for more than two people providing entertainment in pubs.

Mr Radford says the group of up to 20 musicians regularly met in his pub over the last five years to practise, but quit when Weymouth and Portland Borough council bosses demanded the pub obtain an entertainment licence.

The musicians, who are campaigning against proposals they fear could mean making music in public a crime, took their custom instead to pubs in Weymouth protected by licences.

But Mr Radford is dumbfounded as to why council bosses cracked down on the New Star when, he claims, he is doing nothing wrong.

He said. "The musicians have never been paid and have simply used the bar as somewhere to come and practise. I don't regard what they have been doing as live music."

Mr Radford said he had operated the sessions without any complaints over recent years. "When I received the letter I told the group they could use the skittle alley room to practise but they were not happy about that and went elsewhere. It is sad to see because they came here for a number of years and I've lost a lot of trade over what is an unfair situation", he said.

ACTIVITY

In a letter to South Dorset MP Jim Knight, local campaigner Roger Gall says; "Portland has lost a perfectly safe, beneficial community cultural activity to its larger neighbour and in an area that is in dire need of such benefits."


Mr Knight, who organised a recent meeting of Labour MPs with Culture Minister Kim Howells on the issue, said he was saddened to hear of the incident. He added that his talks with Mr Howells indicated that legislation currently going through Parliament could see publicans apply for 'all in one' licenses covering opening hours and entertainment, in the future.

He said. "This particular folk session did not seem to be causing any kind of problem. I'm currently investigating whether the Human Rights Act contradicts the current legislation the borough uses and if they can use a more liberal approach in the future."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 04:29 PM

Having been trying for two years, with the help of many people on this forum, to change this council's policy and as a result to enable the New Star session in particular, I have to disagree with those above.

To feel that a folk festival organised and funded by this council is the only way a festival for Weymouth AND PORTLAND can take place, and that one just has to put up with whatever policy they hold to ensure it, is simply not true.

I was content to leave involvment/attendence at this festival up to each individuals conscience but these appeals have hardened my attitude. I now call on the local people who have been working with this council to examine their motives before they make any appeals for outside support for this festival in this current form.

Perhaps they are best placed to pressure the council?

Their eagerness to climb into bed with this council, on their terms, despite the council's heavy-handed enforcement, has led the council to believe that there would be no adverse effects of their interpretation of this legislation and to consider that mine was a lone voice locally, and one that could safely be ignored.

There must come a time when one has to be prepared to make some sacrifice for things we hold dear. Or do we really believe that we can we have our cake and eat it?

If we do, it shows that the comtempt shown by out Government to us, in ignoring our concerns in the new Bill, and of this council ignoring local concerns, is well founded.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 14 Jan 03 - 05:28 AM

One of the results of this council's strict enforcement policy is that most of the pubs in the borough hold PELs. So it would not be too difficult to organise a festival in alternative venues, at least for the fringe events.

The council owned and run Pavilion theatre can remain empty as I am sure with a little imagination, alternatives could be found for the main attractions in Weymouth and Portland.

I repeat that I wish to have a local festival that I could honestly invite folk to, the current model, I fear is not that.

I suspect that funds designed for the general cutural good of the whole borough are being, at least partly used for this festival, to shore up the council owned Pavilon's shortcomings.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: breezy
Date: 14 Jan 03 - 07:57 AM

how about a 'one off, accidental session back at the star?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 14 Jan 03 - 08:30 AM

In all truth it was mostly the eagerness of the largely Weymouth based participants (some of the very same who are part of the council's 2nd Weymouth based festival), to leave the New Star at the first sign of trouble for a Weymouth based venue, that ended this session.

The licensees were ready to carry on in some form until a solution could be found and most probably still are. Remember the council had yet to visit to even establish if the event was licensable.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 14 Jan 03 - 04:54 PM

Stardard piece of PR in response to letters to Weymouth and Portland Borough Council.
One interesting and telling piece of info. The national take-up rate of PELs is 5%. This borough's take-up figure is 30%!!!

RE: Weymouth Folk Festival 2003

Thank you for your correspondence concerning the Weymouth Folk Festival.

I have overall responsibility for organising the Folk Festival and the
Chief Executive has asked me to respond to the several emails and
letters he has received on the subject. I apologise for the slight delay in my response, but I had a few additional days of leave after the New Year bank holiday.

The 2003 Festival is planned to take place between 9th and 11th May and is organised by the Borough Council in conjunction with the Weymouth Folk Club. Folk artists already appearing at the Festival include Oysterband, The Yetties and Martin Simpson and will include workshops, Ceilidh, Morris Dancing, late night sessions and pub sessions.

The Festival has expanded this year to include more 'pub sessions'
around the Borough with several public houses participating in the
Festival. The Festival is not just about the shows, trade stands and
workshops at the Theatre as we are actively encouraging other venues to participate with the intention of the Festival to be truly Borough wide in the future. All of the public houses participating hold public
entertainments licences and we anticipate the number of venues growing
in the future.

The Borough does sympathise with the effects of the current public
entertainment legislation (Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions)
Act 1982 - Schedule 1) but strict conditions apply regarding licensing
standards that must be adhered to if the venue is holding an event which involves music, singing, dancing and is open to the general public. It must be stressed that the local Weymouth Folk Club members are actively supporting this Festival and do a tremendous amount of work behind the scenes encouraging more local venues to participate and Folk artists to attend.

The Borough Council has a very strong partnership with the Folk Club.
Both parties are aware of and concerned about the negative effect of
some of the recent statements being made about the Festival relating to the public entertainments licence. We can assure you that the Festival will continue and we will strive to make it one of the best in the country in future years through this partnership whilst complying with legislation requirements.

Weymouth and Portland has for many years hosted over 150 festivals and
events including international level sports championships, fetes, fairs, and celebrations, often including significant live entertainment and music. The Borough Council has been actively organising and supporting numerous music based festivals and events including recent major spectacles such as the Millennium Festival (16 days of live entertainment with 180 acts watched by over 200,000 people) the Queens Jubilee Festival, Rock & Pop Festival, Great Days of Summer, Country & Western Festival and the Wednesday Night Live Talent Show.
The Borough Council also promotes and encourages the use of several sites along Weymouth Seafront Esplanade for Morris Dancing, Music and fund raising.

The 2003 events programme will actively support over 30 major music
events which will take place not only in the Pavilion Complex, but also in numerous licensed venues throughout the Borough in conjunction with the local radio station, Wessex FM, and the Dorset Echo Good Gig Guide.

I hope this letter clarifies the position of the Folk Festival and that the Borough Council is making an effort to support and organise music events within the confines of the current legislation. Our aim is not to 'ban' such activities but to encourage more of this type of
entertainment and social activity through positive partnerships but
within the boundaries of legal and safety requirements.

Of course, the Council also has to discharge its regulatory responsibilities, and tries to do so in an even handed way. You may be interested to know that around 100 - (30% of all) licensed venues in the Borough hold public entertainment licenses and help demonstrate the vibrant live music scene in the Borough.

Finally I hope that you will consider coming to our Folk Festival and
supporting the local clubs involved.

Should you wish to contact me you can do so via email
simonking AT weymouth.gov.uk or telephone 01305 838559.

Yours faithfully

Simon King
Tourism and Entertainment Manager
Weymouth and Portland Borough Council


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: vindelis
Date: 14 Jan 03 - 06:21 PM

Where is this 'Local' Folk Club? I believe the one Simon King is referring to is in Langton Herring (West Dorset).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 15 Jan 03 - 03:51 PM

He later refers to club(s)?

The following originally appeared in the Mummers thread.

Letter to the editor, published in the Dorset Evening Echo 01 January 2003. newsdesk@dorsetecho.co.uk
Perhaps they will listen to another festival organiser who is also a councillor?

Folk fans deserve warmer welcome.

I am afraid Tom Grainger, chief executive of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, is sadly mistaken if he thinks his council's over-zealous enforcement of outdated laws relating to live music venues will not affect the council's own folk festival in 2003.

One of the most important elements of any folk festival is the informal music session in a local pub.

Traditional singers and musicians, along with traditional morris dancers, provide the bedrock support for any such event.

Sadly, it seems that such singers and dance sides are not welcome in Weymouth and Portland, where the council has gained a reputation for ruthlessly enforcing the so-called 'two in a bar ' rule to prevent informal sessions taking place, even when the council has not received a single complaint about the (unamplified) music.

Weymouth and Portland is almost the only council in Britain to be adopting such an attitude.

As a result several hundred folk enthusiasts who would normally have flocked to the Weymouth and Portland Festival may instead boycott the event.

It seems ironic that one council department is spending thousands of pounds of council tax payers money on promoting a festival which another council department is effectively under-mining.

It seems that one side of the council doesn't know or doesn't care what the other side of the council is doing.

As a festival organiser and elected councillor myself in Hampshire, I would be screaming blue murder if my local authority was wasting council taxpayers money in this way.

The council is paying good money to book some first-class acts for the formal festival. Sadly, many of the people who would have enjoyed seeing them will not visit Weymouth and Portland so long as the informal music sessions are banned by the council

Councillor Peter Chegwyn
Gosport
Hampshire

letters@dorsetecho.co.uk


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: pavane
Date: 16 Jan 03 - 07:54 AM

I too got the standard reply posted above.

Has anyone pointed out to the council that they are enforcing, apparently for no good reason, an INTERPRETATION of the rules, which I understand has not been tested in the courts.

Having no precedents on the definition of performer, nor of the actual meaning of the two-in-a-bar rule, they are NOT forced to interpret the law in this way. So they must have some other motive in choosing the most draconian interpretation and bullying local publicans.

I wouldn't have been going anyway, but (speaking as an ex-Morris dancer) I certainly won't now or in the future.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: vindelis
Date: 17 Jan 03 - 03:41 PM

The Dance organisers have had some Morris sides asking if the Festival was still happening.
The answer is that

IT IS DEFFINITELY ON - ANYONE WHO WISHES TO ATTEND IS WELCOME.

(In my oppinion that also includes anyone whishing to protest at the Council). All they are doing is putting up the money.
The 'Committee' comprises three singers, two musicians and - usually - one dancer. You could make it three musicians if you include one of the council employees who just happens to play for Weymouth's Morris side Festus Derriman.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: clansfolk
Date: 17 Jan 03 - 04:53 PM

Reply from groups/bands playing at Weymouth (I email all end of Jan)


OYSTER BAND

We'd heard vaguely about this. Thanks for the details. Hmmm! I've written to Steve Heap at the Association of Festival Organisers for some guidance in the matter. Am curious to see what he advises.


best wishes


Colin @ RunningMan
--
Colin Clowtt
'el burro de carga'
colin@oysterband.co.uk
Running Man, PO Box 32100, London N4 1GR, UK



The Yetties

Hi Pete,
Thanks for your e mail about the problems down here. No one from Wessex has mentioned this to me but I'll do some research and some stiring with the council if I feel I can do any good. It may be best just to let it die down, the official involved may have had a rap over the knuckles by now. I just don't know. Certainly we have had no problems at all so far.
All the best,
Bonny Sartin


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 17 Jan 03 - 05:21 PM

The council tax-payers of Weymouth AND PORTLAND are putting up the money. As they pay for the Council owned and promoted Pavilion Theatre, where the festival takes place and all the concerts are staged.

I think it is pretty clear from the PR, to anyone but this so-called 'committee', whose show it really is and who is actually making the decisions. Also that this 'committee' are being shamefully used in this PR to try and add some validity to the idea that this 2nd festival is anything much more than a promotion to shore up the council's own theatre.

[Mrs Shambles comments]
Following last years festival, I offered my services to the elected Chair of the Economic, Tourism and Promotion Committee to help in anyway practical in the arrangements for forthcoming festivals. I was referred to the Manager of the Pavilion where I offered to join the organising committee. I was politely informed that these services were not required and that no 'committee' existed.

I also offered to attend the meeting to be held by the 'committee' to discuss how last years festival had 'worked out'. I made it known That I had 'feedback' that might have proven helpful regarding future festivals. I was informed by the manager of the Pavlion that it might be best not to attend this meeting, (perhaps too many people, or perhaps a fear of a free and open mind).

I also enquired as to what provision would be made regarding activities/events taking place on Portland. After all, under almost all circumstances the Weymouth AND PORTLAND Borough Council is referred to, but for this event it would appear that only Weymouth is recognised. I was informed by the manager of the Pavilion that at this time the focus would be upon a Weymouth based festival.

I am particularly interested in supporting/organising events on Portland. Should this Council truly wish to involve local musicians/dancers etc, Weymouth AND PORTLAND indeed have a wealth of very talented people, I wonder what consultation process had taken place and what advertising was undertaken inviting interested parties to make their interest known etc? Who made the decision if there was/was not to be such a 'committee', and if there is no such 'committee' why do this group of individuals refer to themselvers as a 'committee'?


Can I ask that this 'committee' examine the views above, of Peter Chegwyn, councillor and organiser of the Gosport and Fareham Easter festival, and discuss these with the Chief Executive before any more pleas for outside participation and attendence are made?

A folk festival organised by and for all the people for Weymouth AND PORTLAND has my full support. This current set-up, under this council's current policy towards folk activities, is not this and should not be presented as if it were.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 18 Jan 03 - 04:44 PM

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/arts/main.jhtml?xml=/arts/2003/01/18/bmbill18.xml&sSheet=/arts/2003/01/18/ixartleft.html

Full article linked to above.
Battle over 'last orders' for music
(Filed: 18/01/2003)
Musicians and publicans fear that the new Licensing Bill will impose a tax on music-making that many will be unable to pay. By Colin Randall
[snip]

In fairness, Howells also deplores local authorities that may have latched on to the debate and, exploiting existing legislation, demanded licence fees from pubs with the most informal of sessions. Musicians claim dozens of events have been closed as a result.

One council, Weymouth and Portland, ignored a harmless weekly singaround at the New Star, a small Portland pub run by Alan Radford and his wife, for five years before warning just before Christmas that they needed a PEL costing £220.

Unable to meet the expense from meagre takings, the Radfords offered the folkies use of their skittle alley as a private club exempt from current law. The singers declined and have departed to a Weymouth pub with a PEL.

"They were like part of the family," says Christine Radford, who says she has been driven by red tape and diminishing income to consider quitting the licensed trade. "I was in tears on their last night."

Tom Grainger, the council's chief executive, points out that 30 per cent of licensed premises in the area have PELs and would protest if a blind eye were turned to others. He denies that the council approach has changed and says it is "most unfortunate" that Eliza Carthy and other musicians are urging a boycott of the council-sponsored folk festival in May.[snip]


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 19 Jan 03 - 05:38 AM

It is interesting that this huge local 30% PEL take-up rate, compared to only 5% nationally, is now proudly being banded about. For I have been trying for two years to get the council to supply a percentage figure, and the officers claimed they could not supply this. It has only recently a request made by a local councillor in the last few weeks, that has finally produced this figure.

During early 2001 I eventually managed to meet Mr Grainger to discuss the difficulties presented by his policy to unpaid folk sessions taking place in pubs. I found Mr Grainger to be not well enough briefed on the subject generally.

But I was surprised, given the opporuinity the meeting presented to show his concern for these activities that he did not mention the council organised and funded Weymouth folk festival. I, and the councils' own web board had been informed by the council employed Pavilion Manager, that this was due to take place in May 2002.

When I mentioned this folk festival to him, along with some of the problems his policy may present to it, I was astonished to find out that he was totally unawre of any plans for this festival!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Jan 03 - 05:47 AM

There are other way but don't boycott music festival, or in a way thet won!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 19 Jan 03 - 08:54 AM

The very first festival was only last year.

The programme states : Organised by the Tourism & Corporate Sevices Dept of Weymouth and Porland Borough Council in conjuction with the Weymouth Folk Club.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: Mr Red
Date: 19 Jan 03 - 12:30 PM

Er not me - time and distance. It doesn't list any ceilidh bands yet so the dancing is not going to be foremost. Given the line-up it is concert oriented.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: nickp
Date: 20 Jan 03 - 10:03 AM

Must say I went last year - although only to make use of the festival sticker to go busking for the morning. I got about £2.80 - a mere fraction of my fuel costs. Holiday makers - what holidaymakers....

Ho hum.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: vindelis
Date: 20 Jan 03 - 12:53 PM

You won't find many holiday makers in May, (apart from the 'blue rinse' brigade). Also last year was a very steep learning curve for the council staff.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 21 Jan 03 - 08:19 AM

This today from my MP. He is referring to the New Star (not the Blue Bell).

I have spoken several times on this with Tom in the last week or so. He has decided that he can not justify allocated more time to this issue, particularly given the Council s current difficulties. He also tells me that the letter to the Blue Bell did not close them down it advised them that they have been informed that they might have activities that may require a PEL.
Tom argues that this was a minimal light touch response. He
does not feel that his environmental health officers have the time to go around disrupting events in pubs that proceed without complaint.

I know this may not seem helpful but it is as far as I've got.


This 'minimal light touch' was enough to ensure that the traditional folk session that had been running for over 5 years has now ended. There is not even a note of regret from Tom (the Chief Executive), that his actions have prevented yet another valuable activity, for no reason at all.

The chief executive's hard line has frightened any of my ward councillors away from helping me even get my concerns for the folk events, raised at a committee meeting, to enable the elected members to decide this issue. All I have trying for over two years to do.
The council have a document from a QC employed by the MU, which gives legal opinion that the council's present policy is incompatable with the public's freedom of expression under Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

When I ask a councillor what he would do if the local legal brains disagreed, he told me he would have to accept what the local council employed solicitor told him!!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 24 Jan 03 - 05:04 PM

Sadly the DCMS in their Commentary Jan 2003, still insist on using the word 'musician' when the correct word is 'performer' and 'impromptu', a word which does not appear in this 1899 case law. For the music making in question in this case, was a regular weekly event. But the following shows that non-working musicians, (i.e. customers) are clearly exempt. There has never been any question or claim that any form of payment being made in either local cases affected by the incorrect policy of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council.

3. Entertainment in places where alcohol is sold
3.1 It has been claimed that "110,000 on-licensed premises in England and Wales would lose their automatic right to allow one or two musicians to work. A form of this limited exemption from licensing control dates back to at least 1899."

3.2 This point is disingenuous. In 1899, the courts held that impromptu performances by customers were not licensable, but performances given by a customer or any musician "for a consideration" were licensable. The Report of the Royal Commission on Licensing (England and Wales) 1929 " 1931 (paragraph 249) confirmed this interpretation of the law. Working musicians were therefore not exempted as claimed. The "two in a bar rule" was introduced by the Licensing Act 1964. The Bill does abolish the "two in a bar rule" but introduces new arrangements whereby any pub may obtain permission to stage live musical events at no extra cost when obtaining permission to sell alcohol.

3.3 Under existing legislation all public performances of music in licensed premises are licensable. The only exemption is provided by the "two in a bar" rule, which allows two musicians or less to perform without a public entertainment licence when a Justices' Licence is held.


The members of my council, have had the relevance of this 1899 case law, dismissed to them (but only out of court) by the officers. But only long after the members had been persuaded to endorse the officer's position, without this case law being produced.

Why were the members of the council not informed of the true relevance of this important case law, or of its existence, in the 05/06/01 meeting report? This was made available to the legal dept in May 2001, although they admit to being unaware of it when the initial advice, which has remained unchanged, was given in writing to a Councillor.

This report contains much misleading information. The most incorrect but most influential in convincing the members was the following, for which there is still no supporting case law evidence provided: I wonder if the officers would now advise the members to go to court with this?
[4.5 Historically the Courts have determined that a Licence is required not just where music is provided by paid performers to entertain the public but where members of the public themselves participate in music making].

Perhaps also the licensees of the New Star, who have lost their custom because of this wrong interpretation could also be informed by the DCMS, and possibly the issue can be settled in court? Where we
will then see how confident the officers are of the case law support for their interpretation. I am sure that the licensees of the New Star would not now be short of excellent legal advice, for their position that this activity over 5 years was not public entertainment.

The DCMS have wriggled out of one tricky position into another one. It is difficult to see from the above how local authority officers can now continue to dismiss this 1899 case as not relevant, when they include unpaid customers making music as 'performers' and maintain to their members that case law supports this.

Perhaps the DCMS can also contact Weymouth and Portland Borough Council and inform them why they consider case law and existing legislation covers and exempts these events now?
And why under the Bill, as Dr Howells has recently admitted, they will become licensable and present an automatic public safety concern?

It is well past time that this local issue was brought to a final conclusion. There can be no justification under the sprit of the law for the officer's policy, and there is no case law support for the letter of the law, even without the HRA considerations.

To this end, I would be most grateful for any more help, in the form of messages containing your views, sent to the council and copied to the local paper.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 24 Jan 03 - 09:11 PM

The full 05/06/01 council report, referred to above can be read here.
http://www.freenetpages.co.uk/hp/trg/SCoFF/weymouth.htm


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 25 Jan 03 - 08:37 AM

Tom Grainger in a letter 31 August 2001, after our meeting.

For example, you asserted that there are circumstances whereby landlords, when advised of the need for a PEL, have insisted that the entertainment cease. Are you able to provide real and tangible examples of landlords who have curtailed activities because of the need for a PEL? If so, this becomes real evidence that can be weighed against the positive aspects of the PEL requirements (i.e. safety/noise regulation, paid for by those hosting the entertainment).

After this letter he was presented with much evidence but ignored it. Sadly he now has the evidence of his own council's actions. But still does not care...............As this from my MP will demonstrate.

I have spoken several times on this with Tom in the last week or so. He has decided that he can not justify allocated more time to this issue, particularly given the Council s current difficulties. He also tells me that the letter to the Blue Bell [s/b New Star] did not close them down it advised them that they have been informed that they might have activities that may require a PEL.
Tom argues that this was a minimal light touch response. He
does not feel that his environmental health officers have the time to go around disrupting events in pubs that proceed without complaint.

I know this may not seem helpful but it is as far as I've got.


Please help?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 25 Jan 03 - 10:05 AM

Mr Locke and the 'council's legal position' and dismisal of the 1899 case law.
8th October 2001

THE COVE HOUSE INN, PORTLAND


The Chief Executive has asked me to respond to your e-mail dated 13th September 2001. At the same time I am taking this opportunity to restate the Authority's legal position as regards the requirement to hold a Licence to provide public entertainment as it applies to folk music sessions at the Cove House Inn, Portland.

Licensing of Public Entertainment

As you know the general rule that public entertainment cannot be provided without a Licence is contained in Schedule 1 Paragraph 1 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982.

For the purposes of the Act the term entertainment applies to 'public dancing or music or any other public entertainment of a like kind'

The Exemptions

The Act contains a number of exemptions which have no application to folk music sessions. More relevant however are the exemptions contained in Section 182 of the Licensing Act 1964 for public entertainment by way of music and singing only which is provided … 'by not more than two performers …'. The Licensing Act does not offer a definition of performer.

Folk musicians at the Cove House Inn have not claimed the Section 182 exemption since they acknowledge that more than two musicians have been involved in the music sessions in question. [See the report, linked to above, where you will see that the council had used S182 exemption, counted, and found it did not apply due to the number of particpants]

It appears to me that the logical conclusion of your argument that folk musicians involved in jam sessions are not 'performers' is that the Section 182 exemption available for "not more than two performers" has no application to their music making which leaves us with the general rule that a Public Entertainment Licence is required.

Case Law

The legal principles that (I) a licence is required for public entertainment provided not only by paid performers but by individuals for their own amusement and (ii) that whether or not a charge is made for admission is immaterial were established in Clarke –v- Searle and Gregory –v- Tuffs (Tuss), respectively. Although both decisions considered statute which predates current legislation and on the facts dealt with public dancing I consider that they are of general application to public entertainment law, not just public dancing, and that they offer useful guidance for the folk music sessions in question.

The legal section has considered the case of Brearley –v- Morley to which, as I recall, you also made reference in your presentation to the Council's Social/Community Committee. The facts of this particular case were that a man was playing the piano in a public room in licensed premises as accompaniment for another man singing a song. A number of other men were sat around talking and listening. All were customers and received no remuneration for the entertainment.

In this appeal case the Court found that the Licensee had not kept or used the room for public entertainment since piano playing or singing by customers was "for the purpose of solacing themselves with music".
Clarke –v- Searle does not appear to have been cited in the case which is unfortunate since the two decisions appear to conflict.

Under current legislation on the same facts the S182 exemption would be available. Although I have not referred to Hansard it might be that the exemption was introduced under the Licensing Act with just such a situation of very small-scale music making in mind.

The advice of the Licensing Section is that this 1899 case, although again useful guidance, is not of itself justification for changing our decision on the requirement to hold a Licence, a decision which has been reached weighing up a number of factors missing from this particular case. [Which are?]

The Council's Position

Where it comes to the attention of the Council that public entertainment is being provided without the benefit of a Public Entertainment Licence on anything more than a one off, accidental basis the Council will intervene to explain and if necessary to enforce licensing legislation.

Having made extensive enquiries we have not identified any other Authority whose position differs from our own. In the context of activities at the Cove House Inn I consider that the action taken by this authority has been lawful, justified and proportionate.

In the absence of a fresh judicial decision or a change in primary legislation this sets the Council's legal position on the point. I must make clear that I am unable to enter into any further discussion on the legal arguments and questions as to the Licence itself must now be a matter between the Council and the Licensee.

I would however be pleased to hear further from you with any evidence you have concerning the impact of the legislation on live music in the Borough so that any representations which may be appropriate can be made to the Local Government Association inviting modernisation of licensing laws.

Ian Locke
Director of Tourism and Corporate Services


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 26 Jan 03 - 05:21 AM

New session The Ship Weymouth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 26 Jan 03 - 06:06 AM

The following exchange between The English Folk Dance and Song Society and Tom Grainger, the Chief executive of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council is a year old, but nothing appears to change much in the workings of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council.

From: "Tim Walker" tim.walker@efdss.org
To: chiefexec@weymouth.gov.uk
Sent: Monday, January 14, 2002 6:12 PM

Dear Mr Grainger

The English Folk Dance and Song Society is the country's premier advocacy organisation in the field of folk related activities and represents a membership numbering 5000 individual members and affiliated clubs. In total we represent in excess of 25000 individuals around the country who are actively involved in folk music and folk dancing.

In addition to our national education activities (some of which take place in your borough), we also house the national archive of folk related materials (books, manuscripts, recordings, photographic and films resources, research papers, costume and artefacts) in the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library here in north London. This multimedia archive is the largest and most diverse resource of English cultural materials and documents in the world and many of the materials cannot be found elsewhere. As such we can genuinely be considered the country's authority on English folk culture.

I have been following, with great interest and concern, Mr Roger Gall's search for an equitable solution to the PEL issues that have marred the activities of the folk sessions at The Cove Public House and would like to register the EFDSS's support of Mr Gall in his persistent questioning of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council in this matter.

It is the view of the English Folk Dance and Song Society that, in cases where there are no registered noise complaints and where no hazard to public health and safety can be identified, Local Government Authorities should responsibly put all practical effort and consideration into reading, interpreting and giving effect to the Entertainment Licensing Legislation in such a way as to actively encourage and promote locally organised, participative, cultural activities for the benefit, through richness of experience, of the community at large.

As we understand there to be a lack of clarity on the term 'performer' and a degree of discretion on your part with regard to fee structures, the EFDSS would welcome constructive discourse with WPBC on this matter and would invite either yourself or one of your colleagues to contact us either by email or on the telephone number below at your convenience in order that a non-confrontational way forward may be identified.

Yours sincerely Tim Walker

From: "Tom Grainger" TomGrainger@weymouth.gov.uk
To: "Tim Walker" tim.walker@efdss.org
Cc: "Sue Allen" SueAllen@weymouth.gov.uk; "Ian Locke"
IanLocke@weymouth.gov.uk
Sent: Tuesday, January 15, 2002 9:58 AM

Thank you for your enquiry. The reality is that the live music scene in Weymouth & Portland is thriving. Also the there is no bar to live music at the Cove House Inn. The licensee has applied for and been granted a PEL. There is of course a view being expressed by other parties, including Mr Gall, that a PEL is not necessary under current legislation, for the kind of activities operated at the Cove House Inn.

It is not a view that is shared by the Council, nor from our research any other licensing authority. The matter has been debated widely and at length in this Council and has been considered by Councillors. There are no new points being added in any discussion and consequently the Council is no longer prepared to continue detailed discussion on the matter. Our view is that ultimately it is a matter of law, which would have to be tested in the courts, not one of policy or local interpretation. We have no wish to pursue the matter to the courts and I am sure neither does the licensee.

At least one party to the very detailed discussions that we have had does not accept this view and has therefore taken the matter up with the local government ombudsman, to whom we shall of course respond.

You mention a non confrontational way forward and local discretion on fees etc. Our view is that the present law is in need of reform and that is the best way forward in the longer term. In the meantime, our licensing staff will continue to work with musicians and licensees to try to ensure that the present law is applied fairly, sensibly and consistently.

The fee structure in Weymouth & Portland is realistic and not prohibitive and as I said at the start of this note the live music scene is thriving. It would be inappropriate for me to pass on third party comments, without their consent, but there is plenty of evidence to support the comments I have made in the previous sentence.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 29 Jan 03 - 02:47 PM

Dorset Evening Echo 29 January 2003

Council letter pledges action over breaches in law.

Fresh warning over unlicensed shows
By James Tourgoutjames.tourgout@dorsetecho.co.uk

Landlords and entertainers face a new warning over unlicensed performances after a morris dancing fiasco in Cerne Abbas.

West Dorset District Council, in a new letter to be sent out in response to inquiries, says it will investigate any breaches.

The move comes after pubs in Cerne Abbas were warned not to let the Wessex Morris Men perform inside because they do not have public entertainment licenses.

Bob Hanton, council corporate services manager, said that the traditional events such as morris dancing should be exempt from a licence. "It is not open to local authorities to arbitrarily decide that the legal requirement for a public entertainment does not apply to a particular type of entertainment, such as folk or traditional type events. Authorities have a duty to apply the legislation fairly and impartially."

The Wessex Morris men were forced to perform their Christmas mumming play in the street in December after the licensing swoop in December. They hit out at the licensing laws and an informer who tipped off the council after staging the drama inside pubs for the past 18 years.

The new development follows fears in Weymouth that musicians were being treated unfairly in the run-up to the town's folk festival. Now members of the district council will hear about the new letter at an appeals and licensing committee meeting today.

The letter emphasises that premises must have public entertainment licences if events are being staged by three or more people. Mr Hanton said in the letter: "Where it comes to the attention of the council that public entertainment is being provided without the benefit of a licence, the council will investigate the matter and if appropriate will take further action."

He added: "The legislation is not intended to ban any type of entertainment but rather to ensure that such events meet the relevant health and safety standards for the protection of the public."

ENDS

Are council officers conspiring together, against the public's interest, to ensure that singing from the same hymn-book? Do the following statements look familiar?

This from the 05/06/01 report, to the councillors of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council. "It is not open to the authority to disapply the legal requirements to hold a PEL in respect of one particular type of entertainment. This Authority has a duty to apply legislation fairly and impartially."

And from Weymouth and Portland Borough Council' Chief Executive's 23/12/02 letter to all councillors. "Where it comes to the attention of the Council that a public entertainment is being provided without the benefit of a Public Entertainment Licence on anything more than a one off, accidental basis the Council will intervene to explain and if necessary enforce licensing legislation."

In fact these two councils are following the officers of Oxford City Council. This council's elected members had instructed their officers to enable unpaid folk sessions as they did not consider these to be entertainment. However, their officers came back and told them that that they could not - this from a report to their members on 20/03/01. 18.

"It is not possible for the Council to have a policy of non-enforcement of the legislation especially in respect of one particular type of entertainment. Whilst each application for a PEL is considered on its own merits a uniform and fair approach must be adopted in respect of enforcement. The Council MUST NOT fetter its discretion in this way and would be open to challenge if it did. The test is whether or not public entertainment is taking place."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 02 Feb 03 - 12:28 PM

The full wording (and the full horror) of the above report from West Dorset District Council, and the standard letter can been seen on the following thread.

Mummer play stopped at Cerne Abbas


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 02 Feb 03 - 12:32 PM

The New Star session R.I.P.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Feb 03 - 06:43 AM

The issue is soon to go to a meeting of the Licensing Committee.

It would be very helpful if the councillors could see (in the local press), letters of concern from potential festival attendees and tourists. To demonstrate the real threat of the policy they currently hold and to get them to ask themselves what exactly they have to lose by changing it.

This outside support, at this time, could make all the difference, please help.

letters@dorsetecho.co.uk


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: GUEST,Don Thompson(of semi pro duo "Sic Transit"
Date: 05 Feb 03 - 01:35 PM

We are based in Maidstone Kent, where we also share the running of a folk club. It is obvious that Weymouth Council think that the removal of sessions will mean more money from their venue(s). The only way to deal with this is to write off this year's festival, and show them how profitable a festival is with no folkies. They should be more than willing to listen to us next year. I shall not be at Weymouth this year unless their attitude changes radically. The same response would be appropriate for other authorities with the same mindset. I hate the idea of ruining a folk festival, but if we don't apply what little power we have NOW, we may never have another chance.

Don Thompson


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: BobRik
Date: 05 Feb 03 - 04:46 PM

This years festival will NOT be written, but rather be many times better than last years with a stunning array of top liners, superb dance teams,, and a host of local talent who appear throughout the town at many venues. Not to be missed. But if you do miss it, then it's your loss.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Feb 03 - 05:23 PM

The festival is not really the issue.

The issue is this council's policy.

It would be nice if those who are so concerned about the success of the festival in its current form and post here to encourage others to attend, would at least address the policy.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: BobRik
Date: 06 Feb 03 - 05:01 PM

The policy is being fully addressed professionally, with those that are in a position to make a difference.
And the latest amendments are reflecting public opinion.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Feb 03 - 06:01 AM

BobRik

The LAW maybe being addressed, although, given the latest ammendments and the stated objectives of the Bill, I would not consider it to be professional. This is only being done because to date over 68,000 people made a difference by having the courage to express their opinion publicly, many of these writing to their MPs, media, national and local press.

The local POLICY has certainly not been adressed professionally and those locally who have and are in a position to make a difference have largely chosen not to attempt to make a difference by expressing their opinion locally.

If you read the DCMS latest list of excuses, you will sell that if refers to 1899 case law that clearly exempts unpaind music in pubs by customers from the licensing requirement. This council have ignored this.........

Do you think this is a correct, helpful or professional local policy, or even a legally supported one? If you do not, what are you going to do about it?.........Just continue to ignore it and urge others to ignore it too?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: Saucy Sal
Date: 10 Feb 03 - 09:00 AM

All I wanted was to find out more about Weymouth Folk Festival and I find myself in the midst of really heated debate! Not that there's anything wrong with that - it's made very interesting and enlightening reading.

Now I may be being a bit cynical, but there does seem to be a bit of personal stuff coming in here - a dig or three at "the Committee" -whoever they are.

That said, Weymouth & Portland bc do seem to be rather overzealous in their approach to PEL, but isn't the approach to entertainments licensing supposed to be changing with the new legislation? Perhaps I'm being naive though in thinking that the festival is perhaps the best way of persuading them that folkie stuff is not a minority interest and that people from all over the country care passionately about it. Maybe a peaceful protest at the festival would be more effective than the implicit boycott Peter Chegwyn's letter suggests.

I really enjoyed the festival last year (warm, friendly and welcoming to newcomers from upcountry like myself) with a lot of excellent local performers and my family and I are looking forward to this year's.....It would be a real shame if there was no festival.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 10 Feb 03 - 11:48 AM

There will be a Weymouth and Portland Borough Council organised festival.

This council also has a Local Cultural Strategy, to determine how such things should be decided..........

What prompted this thread, remains the council's policy, rather than the issue of the festival.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 10 Feb 03 - 07:19 PM

The Joint Committee on Human Rights conclusion on the Licensing Bill, in their Report 10 February 2003

21. In the light of the above, we consider that—

the provisions for allowing people to make representations about licensing applications in order to protect their rights under ECHR Article 8 would be likely to offer adequate protection as long as appropriate regulations are made under clause 17(5) of the Bill; but

there is a significant risk that the blanket licensing regime proposed in the Bill would give rise to an incompatibility with people's right to freedom of expression under ECHR Article 10, even in the light of the Government's announcement on 3 February mentioned in paragraph 18, above. We draw this to the attention of each House.

This council's policy under current legislation, must also be compatible now, with Acticle 10. In the light of the above, there must be more than a little doubt that it is....If it not, the council's policy, far from following the letter of the law in fact, unlawful and MUST be changed.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: BobRik
Date: 11 Feb 03 - 01:43 AM

Well it's so nice to hear positive feedback on the festival (saucysal)and yes last years, albeit the first was a tremendous success.
All bookings are now finalised for this years and it will be a big one- from concerts, workshops, sessions and ceilidhs.
Any info, you need please let me know.
And I look forward to seeing you there- do catch up with me.
btw- how far did you travel to be there??


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Feb 03 - 02:20 AM

Err, yes Bob but what about changing the policy to ensure the success of this festival, for that was rather selective reading of the above post and completely ignoring many others?

Supporting folk festivals is of course a good thing, but is supporting this council's policy, a good thing and we simply ignore it, to have this festival in this form?

That said, Weymouth & Portland bc do seem to be rather overzealous in their approach to PEL,-

The future of the council organised festival in ths form must be in some, due to the huge financial crisis 'the professionals' of this council has landed us all in. We face a 69% increase in our already high council tax!

Today the council members, a third of whom face re-eletion in
May have to decide on urgent cost-cutting proposed measures like closing the council owned and run Pavilion theatre, where the festival events take place, closing the swimming pool, having refuse collection every other week and closing many public toilets.

It is suggested in yesterday's local paper that the post of arts development officer could go, saving £25,000, and £27,000 could be saved by not subscibing to The LGA and bodies like South West Arts.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: nickp
Date: 11 Feb 03 - 04:13 AM

Shambles - and apologies for the thread creep - do you really mean 69% increase, and if so what is the proposed change to a band D. Sorry for those that this means nothing to but being involved in an organisation that writes Council Tax software (not used at Weymouth) I'm staggered by the possible technical implications of such a large leap. Do you have a clicky I can read it up on? I understand the County is suggesting 15%-ish, so is this 69% on the District charge - still very steep but a much lesser proportion (about £90 a year for a band D). If true then losing a member of staff and a subscription is going to be a drop in the ocean. You might then wish to move to a cheaper and potentially more folk friendly area - it's cheaper here in Somerset! Nick


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Feb 03 - 05:20 AM

From the Dorset Evening Echo 11 Fb 2003

mathmatics are that if nothing more is cut, the borough's precept will ne about £220 at band D, 69% increase. Every £21,600 that can be trimmed from the budget is about £1 reduction on Council Tax

http://www.thisisdorset.net/


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Feb 03 - 05:22 AM


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: nickp
Date: 11 Feb 03 - 06:48 AM

Thanks Shambles, although the links has moved on, that makes depressing reading. Mind you a few chief executives would save more money than an Arts Officer!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Weymouth Folk Festival
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Feb 03 - 07:31 AM

The article I quoted from was a weekly spot called By The Way. You can contact the chap who writes it, called Michel Hooper-Immins on echobytheway@hotmail.com.

I suspect there will be more coverage of this issue today, on that site. So keep looking and thanks.

And yes, losing this Chief Executive would get my vote.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
Next Page

  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 14 August 5:08 PM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.