A packed Van Morrison show at Wrest Park in Bedfordshire, England over the weekend was full of chaos – from fans waiting hours before the show to a lengthy exit while trying to leave the venue.
Fans took to Twitter, angrily expressing their concern over the no food/drink policy, the jacked-up price of drinks within the venue, lack of bathrooms, and the bars running out of drinks early on in the night. One concertgoer even said that although she had disabled front-row seats, they were foced out of the seats and separated from their carer. However, the worst part of the night was the traffic entering and leaving Wrest Park.
While English Heritage denied any involvement in the traffic jams, they pointed to Heritage Live GCE, the organizers of the event. GCE apologized for the delays at the venue, noting that the traffic was caused by an accident on the A6.
“GCE Live would like to apologise to those who had difficulty in leaving the Wrest Park site on Friday after the Van Morrison concert,” the company said in a statement. “Despite the best efforts and hard work of the specialist traffic management company contracted to safely get patrons off the site, a bottleneck in the village of Silsoe and the sheer number of vehicles created unnecessary delays.
“We thank those who waited patiently as we worked to resolve the problems on the night. We are currently investigating why this happened and how we can guarantee this doesn’t happen again at future events.”
Concertgoers didn’t find the apology to be heartfelt, or correct. Rather, they believed the company should have executed an easier exit situation for cars, since the venue held 9,350 people.
Confirmed by Beds Police who were dispatched to organise the traffic at 12pm! There was no accident on the A6 it was due to poor management of traffic by event organisers. Taxi’s and event goers parking all over Silsoe did not help. @HeritageLiveGCE should admit responsibility!
— PetePatPaterson (@PetePatPaterson) September 1, 2018
Utter lie…You should never be allowed to organise an event again..Shambles from start to finish..Vip area spoilt the venue. Overpriced drinks. Poor toilets. Poor food with a 2 hour queue. No car park management . And now you lie to get out of it…I think not
— Ian Dunne (@iandunne4) September 1, 2018
We live 15 mins from Wrest Park we left the grandstand at 10.00 after Van Morrison finished, and we got home at 1.15. Looking back now it seems like some sort of horrible nightmare. You had NO traffic management on that field. It was a solid chaotic traffic jam for 3 hours.
— KimIvory (@KimIvory) September 1, 2018
This is not acceptable. We left at 9.30pm & queued for 3hrs to get out the car park. No attendants and all parking markers removed. To switch the blame elsewhere is avoiding the error in organisation. These concerts are an experience from start to finish & you failed miserably.
— Stuart Grahame (@MBOY82) September 1, 2018
Dismal traffic management led to 2:45hrs to leave field, shockingly bad organisation for something so predictable & basic. Oh and dire pedestrian lighting from golden circle to parking field. Very poor end to a great concert, won’t trust venue & organisers in future ?
— ianhf (@ianhf) September 1, 2018
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