by Adam Williams
Organisers had applied to increase capacity for the July event at Merton Farm to 9,999 in response to its growing success since 2006. But last month, the city council’s licensing committee adjourned a decision on the application to allow more time to study details on security arrangements and traffic management.
Following a further hearing last Wednesday, the application was granted on a one-year basis, much to the delight of organiser Matt Gough (pictured).
He said: “We’re happy to have finalised a licence increase for this summer.
“Lounge On The Farm is very much a celebration of Canterbury and the surrounding area, and the increased capacity will allow us to continue our long-term plans to bring an international standard music festival to east Kent.
“The increased capacity actually provides us with a much better platform from which to provide a safe, controlled, enjoyable environment, for not just all our ticket holders, but to everyone within the surrounding area.”
Council officers wanted to ensure the application met four objectives. These were the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm.
Matt Gough believes their report to the committee ticked all the right boxes.
He added: “We were always confident that the process, thought, and documentation going into the planning of the festival was at the same high standard as in previous years, and are more than happy to continue working alongside the city council’s licensing committee and all involved parties in future planning for the festival.”
The festival is covered by an umbrella license and had the committee rejected an extension, the weekend’s entertainment would have still gone ahead, but with capacity limited to that of previous years.
Nine letters of representation had been received raising concerns about the application from Lower Hardres Parish Council and residents living in nearby Church Lane, Nackington.
For more festival information and to buy tickets, visitwww.loungeonthefarm.co.uk