POLICE were warned about a massive rave being set up on Devil’s Dyke but were too late to stop it.
Senior officers also blamed rain and darkness for their decision to let the 2,000-strong party go on for more than 24 hours.
But the force denied a lack of resources were behind the lack of action inisting they had additional officers available but chose not to use them.
Police were criticised after the mammoth rave was allowed to continue and the force launched an internal review.
Seven sound systems blasted out music which could be heard from Poynings, with passers-by describing passersby as “out of their heads”.
About 400 vehicles lined Devil’s Dyke Road with revellers dancing into the next day and dozens of stragglers passing out in their cars and on grass verges in the National Park.
Temporary Chief Constable Giles York, speaking at this month’s police performance and accountability meeting, admitted police had received a call about someone setting up music equipment.
He said: “We got an early call from a dog handler, and when turned up we saw a vehicle pulling away.
“So we are responsive to calls coming in.
“We did go to a number of sites where we thought the rave might be being held, but by the time we found it, it had already started.
“We decided it was safer to let the rave run rather than try and dismantle it.
“It was dark, it had been raining on and off and footing was unsecure.”
TCC York denied one of the reasons no action was taken was that there were insufficient number of police officers available.
He said: “It’s not that they weren’t available.
“If we needed more resources, we could have readily called upon those.”
TCC York added: “Historically, raves have been seen as a bit of a party, but it’s much more sophisticated than that now.
“They are not safe places.
“There was a rave recently in Croydon where 1,300 people turned up and six police officers were injured.
“It’s not as simple as walking in and taking the power lead out.”