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Gloucestershire Business News

£4,000 fine for party which kept neighbours awake for two nights

Magistrates have fined a campsite operator £4,000 for running a festival which kept neighbours awake for two nights.

Lucy Offord of Tobacconist Farm Camping and Caravan Site, Minchinhampton, informed Stroud District Council with a temporary event notice that she planned to run an end of season party for four hours on the evening of Saturday, September 30, last year.

However after a number of complaints were made about excessive noise from live and recorded music from the Friday evening until the early hours of the Sunday morning, a Stroud District Council investigation discovered that a festival was held at Tobacconist Farm Camping and Caravan Site over this period.

The festival, called 'The World Is Your Oyster' was advertised as running from Friday, September 29 to Sunday, October 1, with admission tickets for sale online beforehand.

Live music, a bar, a reggae tent, DJs and other attractions were advertised at £40 for a weekend ticket or £15 for a day ticket.

Lucy Offord only had a temporary event notice from Stroud District Council to run an end of season party at the campsite from 8pm to midnight on Saturday, September 30.

There were a number of noise complaints received by the council from the Friday night to the Sunday morning.

She was found guilty in absence of two counts of knowingly allowing live music and recorded music at the premises otherwise than under and in accordance with an authorisation and was fined £2,000 for each offence by magistrates in Cheltenham on Monday, April 9.

Magistrates accepted that she had been served summons for the court hearing, and heard that she twice declined to be interviewed under caution by the council's licensing team.

She was also ordered to pay £1,704.50 of Stroud District Council costs and she must also pay a £170 victim surcharge, bringing the total payable to £5,874.50.

Rachel Andrew, Stroud District Council principal licensing officer said after the hearing: "It is important that event organisers have the correct authorisations in place.

"In this case the noise complaints and advertising showed us that a festival took place on the campsite outside of the times of the temporary event notice.

"Residents were clearly disturbed by loud music and the campsite owner declined to come in to talk to us about the matter. We therefore referred the matter to the court."

Councillor Steve Robinson, chairman of the council's community services and licensing committee added: "The judgement sends a very clear message to offenders that Stroud District Council will not tolerate breaches of licensing legislation and will take action where appropriate."

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