Broadfield says sorry for cancelling Fenland Festival and says solicitors will deal with refunds

MATTHEW Broadfield has said sorry for cancelling the Fenland Festival after leaving the area.

In a statement on the festival’s Facebook page Mr Broadfield said solicitors will be refunding people who had bought tickets for the event which was meant to take place today.

He has claimed the price of risk assessments forced him to cancel the festival on Tuesday, just four days before it was meant to begin.

Mr Broadfield’s statement said: “The team who wrote the risk assessments, TESS Ltd and the security firm Mackenzie Arnold wanted �21,000 in total after being told by the council they are a condition on the licence to be there.

“It was not viable for a small event and it was a silly quote only received after the conditions were imposed on us three weeks before the event.

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“They all withdrew because they were not paid before the event, yet no contracts were signed. It forced us to cancel and I’ve got solicitors involved because I got let down.

“I’ve sold my shop and the solicitors will refund everyone soon for me. I’ve moved back home to start again.

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“All the money I took went back into the festival which has now been cancelled and it’s left me with nothing so I’ve got to start again elsewhere. Sorry.”

However, in an e-mail to Cambs Times/Wisbech Standard editor John Elworthy, Steve Laws of TESS Ltd laid the blame for the event’s cancellation at Mr Broadfield’s door.

He said: “Our senior management team had devoted a significant amount of time and resources into making sure the Fenland Festival progressed as a safe and successful event.

“Unfortunately, the promoter (Mr Broadfield) of the Fenland Festival has not sufficiently met the terms and conditions set out at the Licensing hearing and written into the Event License.

“Therefore we were unable to continue our relationship with the festival with confidence that the event could take place safely and within the law. Therefore we took the decision to withdraw.”

It is not known how many people bought tickets for the ill-fated event but many have already posted on the festival’s Facebook page demanding a refund.

Karen Brown said: “Can you let people know when you are back please? I for one would like to come in the shop for a refund”.

Her sentiments were echoed by Nicky Munden who said: “I want my �50 back mate, please don’t run off with people’s money that’s wrong. When are you going to be back?”

Despite failing to bring Simon Webbe, DJ Luck & MC Neat and Fugative to Fenland Mr Broadfield - who runs Cambridgeshire Computers in March’s Broad Street - has received some support from members of the public for his attempts at staging the music festival.

Susan Leslie said on Facebook: “I’m sorry to hear about the cancellation of this because it was such a good idea and would bring so much to the area.

“How do people think the Reading and Leeds festivals started? I’m looking forward to next year’s Festival (Mr Broadfield had originally said he’d look to run the same event in 2012 rather than issuing refunds) as I would have been unable to come this year anyway. “I wish you good luck with everything.”

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