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Last Updated: Thursday, 10 July, 2003, 15:04 GMT 16:04 UK
Police 'allow' festival licence
Blur will be playing at the festival
Police have decided not to launch a legal challenge against the city council's decision to grant a licence for the Leeds Festival.

The August Bank Holiday event has been marred by violence for the last three years.

This year it has been moved from Temple Newsam in Leeds to Bramham Park, near Wetherby.

A West Yorkshire police spokeswoman said the force was not pursuing a judicial review but they still had "serious concerns" about public safety.

'Culture of disorder'

She explained that even if the force has been successful in the review, there was no guarantee the festival would not be given the go-ahead.

She added: "The force continues to have serious concerns that public safety cannot be guaranteed at an event that now has a well established culture of disorder.

Toilet blocks on fire
Violence broke out at the end of the 2002 festival

"Responsibility for the health and safety of those attending rests with the organisers.

"However the force is responsible to the wider community in the area.

"Therefore West Yorkshire Police feels it must work with Leeds City Council and the organisers to ensure that every opportunity is taken to prevent a reoccurrence of previous disorder."

Extra staff

Last month Melvin Benn, managing director of organisers Mean Fiddler, unveiled a 250,000 package of security measure for this year's event.

These include non-combustible toilets, improved lighting and campsite facilities, and a ban on campfires.

Around 700 security staff will be on duty over the weekend, with 400 working on the Sunday night, which is double the number on duty last year.

Acts appearing at the festival include Metallica, Linkin Park, White Stripes and Blur.


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