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WOMAD can continue

December 14, 2012 5:01 PM

A licensing hearing was held on December 14th in Chippenham to decide the future of the WOMAD (World of Music and Dance) festival held annually at Charlton Park near Malmesbury. Wiltshire Police called for a review of the license because they were unhappy at the way the festival is organised.

The hearing was originally scheduled for July 23rd, immediately before this year's event. Following representations by WOMAD Wiltshire Council agreed to defer the hearing. A further deferral took place in November to give WOMAD time to respond to new evidence submitted by the police.

At today's hearing a number of conditions were imposed to ensure the smooth planning of the festival from January onwards. A request by the police to have an effective veto on the event was denied, though they will be involved in the preparations together with the council as licensing authority. Conditions to ensure an adequate drugs policy and to allow the police access to WOMAD incident logs if needed for crime prevention were also included.

WOMAD organisers can choose if they want to pay for extra policing, or if they want to use private security organisations.