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Agenda item

Application for the Grant of a Premises Licence - Field to the South East of Stanhope Village


The Sub-Committee considered a report of the Corporate Director of Neighbourhoods and Climate Change with regards to an application for the grant of a premises licence for a field - OS Map Reference NZ0044338150 Field to the South East of Stanhope Village to the immediate East of the sewerage works approaching Frosterley (for copy see file of minutes).


The Licensing Team Leader presented the report and Members were given the opportunity to ask questions.


The Licensing Team Leader added that the second stage was only to be used for one of the two weekends and on the other weekend only one stage would be used for indoor live music.  Only three of the four bars would be used at one time. 


Mr Lamb, objector, spoke on behalf of himself and his wife and confirmed that they had only been made aware of the application due to luckily walking past and reading the site notices on the property.


Mr and Mrs Lamb had moved to the area eleven years ago and had discarded a number of properties that were unsuitable due to noise, opting for Railway Terrace due to its location and this application would bring noise.


Mr Lamb advised the Committee that he had great concerns due to the standard industry noise tolerance at a level equal to 65 decibels which was the sound of a fire alarm going off inside a property.  In addition to the noise generated, the application would generate additional traffic and due to the expansion of a nearby campsite Mr Lamb and his neighbours often had to park in the town centre and walk to their properties.


Assuming 10000 people attended the events each day over the weekend period, Mr Lamb identified the potential for issues gaining access to his property.  He referred to the website for the event which promoted the use of scooters, vehicles and motorhomes and he wondered what impact this would have.


Mr Lamb also alluded to safety issues regarding the river and use of the bridge which had already been cracked as many of the access points were across the stream.


The Applicant, Mr Hutchinson, acknowledged that the concerns raised by Mr Lamb were valid, however appropriate steps had been taken to manage any risks.  He responded to Mr Lambs reference to the sound level being equal to that of a fire alarm going off and although this was correct the position you would have to be in to hear noise at this level was directly in front of the stage.  The sound pressure was not audibility and the audibility would not be the same level outside of the perimeter or near residents as it would in front of the stage.  This was the reason that two conditions had been agreed in conjunction with Environmental Health and the application did not deviate from the industry standards. 


A noise consultant expert would be appointed and their recommendations would be submitted in a noise management plan which would be accepted in full.  After 11pm the sound would be inaudible and this was a commitment by the Applicant.


With regard to traffic management, Mr Hutchinson confirmed that Stanhope was not an ideal site, however he would engage with a traffic management expert for recommendations and these would also be implemented in full.


He confirmed that in ten years he had delivered over one hundred successful festivals and admittedly there would be congestion but it would be entirely safe.  The lane next to the river and Railway Terrace would be excluded from the traffic management plan to ensure that residents had access at all times.


With regards to river safety Mr Hutchinson confirmed that every summer there was a large number of people that congregated at the river in Stanhope which was completely unmanaged, however during the festival there would be a team of qualified professionals which he considered would improve river safety significantly.


Finally he confirmed that he had agreed suitable steps with responsible authorities to assist in promoting the licensing objectives.


The Licensing Team Leader asked when the first event would be held and Mr Hutchinson confirmed that they had an event pencilled in for May which was impossible to comply with due to social distancing legislation, there was a festival for late June and they would fully comply with any legislation on social distancing.


The Licensing Team Leader asked a further question in relation to whether the Applicant intended to liaise with the Safety Advisory Group (SAG) and Mr Hutchinson confirmed that although it was not a requirement with the event being held on private land and they already engaged with lot of the relevant parties (County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service, Durham Constabulary and North East Ambulance Service) they would make a submission to the SAG as this was an unusual year, due to being in the post COVID-19 recovery phase.


Mr Lamb asked why the traffic management and sound surveys had not been carried out prior to the application and Mr Hutchinson confirmed that the plans were fundamentally to comply with conditions attached to a premises licence and the conditions were only finalised following the application process.  He confirmed that all festivals were allocated a hotline for residents with any concerns – sound consultants were in place to carry out necessary checks throughout the weekend as there was a legal obligation to ensure conditions were met.  He was happy to share details of the plan Mr Lamb.


Mr Lamb referred to the hotline and asked whether it was used and Mr Hutchinson admitted that it was used and ensured any problems were

addressed very quickly.  If someone contacted them they would assess noise levels and if it was excessive, it would be addressed.  Noise levels could change in the event that the direction of the wind changed, but he reiterated that it would be addressed, within minutes.


Councillor Maitland asked whether there were conditions of entry for minors and Mr Hutchinson confirmed that under 18s had to be accompanied by a responsible person over 18 at all times.  If at any point they were deemed to not be responsible they would be asked to leave. 


Councillor Liddell asked for clarification about the three day event and whether it included camping.  Mr Hutchinson confirmed the vast majority arrived on Friday and left Monday morning which mitigated a lot of the traffic management issues as they would only relate to the arrival on Friday and departure on Monday.


The Licensing Team Leader asked whether any consideration had been given to park and ride facilities and Mr Hutchinson confirmed that around a quarter lived local but the majority were camping, however for those who were not camping, parking was located in another area of Stanhope with better access, and shuttlebuses would transport people to and from the site.  The main reason was that the road access took intense traffic management and they would rather do that only on Friday and Monday.  There was also specific transport provided from Durham and Crook.


Mr Lamb stated that he was unaware that he would have 10000 campers within 500m of his home and therefore was even more alarmed.


Councillor Liddell asked if security would be attending for the duration of the festival and Mr Hutchinson confirmed that there would be around 90 staff allocated to the event.


Mr Hutchinson asked the Sub-Committee to draw attention to the track records over 8 years and hoped they would agree that the events did not drain resources and were carried out responsibly.  He advised that he did not work in adversity with local residents and moving forward, if there were any concerns he advised Mr Lamb to contact the relevant festival website and he would ensure they worked with him to address any concerns.


Councillors Maitland, Hampson and Liddell retired at 2.20pm to deliberate the application in private.




That the application be granted subject to the conditions that were consistent with the operating schedule and those that had been mediated with Environmental Health. The terminal hours for the sale of retail by alcohol were reduced on a Saturday and Sunday and reflected in the following table of Licensable Activity:



Licensable Activity





Provision of live music (indoors and outdoors) and performance of dance (indoors only)



Provision of recording music (indoors and outdoors)




Late night refreshment (outdoors only)



Sale by retail of alcohol (on premises only)




Proposed opening times



Friday 16:00 hrs until 23:30 hrs, Saturday 11:00 hrs until 00:00 hrs, Sunday 11:00 hrs until 23:30 hrs. 



Friday 16:00 hrs until 00:30 hrs, Saturday 11:00 hrs until 01:00 hrs and Sunday 11:00 hrs until 00:30 hrs. 



Friday 23:00 hrs until 01:00 hrs, Saturday 23:00 hrs until 01.30 hrs and Sunday 23:00 hrs until 01:00 hrs. 


Friday 16:00 hrs until 00:30 hrs,

Saturday 11:00 hrs until 00.30 hrs and Sunday 11:00 hrs until 23:30 hrs. 



Friday 16:00 hrs until 01:00 hrs, Saturday 10:30 hrs until 01:30 hrs and Sunday 10:30 hrs until 01:00 hrs.




Supporting documents:


Democratic Services
Durham County Council
County Hall
County Durham
03000 269 714