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Plans to stage Shakedown over one day in the summer
Shakedown is set to return for another year but with major changes.
The festival has been held in Brighton’s Stanmer Park since 2011 and welcomed more than 19,000 revellers to its last two-day bash at the beauty spot in September.
But now organisers are hoping to hold this year’s event in the Waterhall conservation area in Patcham, which forms part of the South Downs National Park.
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Festival bosses are also planning to bring the event forward to July 19, instead of its traditional date of late September, and will focus on a one-day event as opposed to two.
More than 700 people signed a letter urging Brighton and Hove City Council to refuse permission for last year’s festival in Stanmer Park following complaints the site had been left amud bath in 2011.
Steve Jones, director of Shakedown, said the petition was one of the reasons for the switch to Waterhall.
He said: “There was the petition, which came following one of the wettest summers on record, but we also outgrew the park as well.
“We’ve been working closely with the council and the police to find the most suitable venue and Waterhall has proven the most popular choice.
“It’s the same distance from central Brighton as Stanmer and we’ll be running a similar extensive shuttle bus service as we have done previously with great success.
“Previously the second day of the festival was a family-orientated day with an outdoor pop stage, but we didn’t sell the numbers of tickets we would have liked for it so we’re reverting back to what we do best.
“By moving it into the summer we’re hoping for better and certainly warmer weather, and we’re currently finalising our line-up which is shaping up very nicely.”
Jason Tams, commercial manager at Waterhall-based Brighton Rugby Club, said the move was “nothing but positive”.
He added: “The pitches will be dry in July so there won’t be problems like there was at Stanmer Park and the cash our club will get will be ploughed back into junior rugby, which is great.
“We’d much prefer events like this which benefit the wider community than unauthorised encampments.”
The decision on the festival location will be made at a city council meeting on Thursday, January 23.
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