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Tuesday, 19 December, 2000, 10:56 GMT
Bands back Roskilde safety plan
Roskilde Festival
Nine people died at Roskilde in June
British bands Oasis and the Pet Shop Boys, who pulled out of this year's Roskilde Festival after nine people were crushed to death, are donating part of their fees to improve concert safety.

The two bands had been in dispute with the Danish festival's organisers after they withdrew when nine young men were trampled to death on 30 June during a performance by US rock act Pearl Jam.

Both bands said it would be "disrespectful" to the families of the dead to continue, a decision attacked by the festival's organisers.

Pet Shop Boys singer Neil Tennant later said the way the organisers handled the tragedy was "unbelievably insensitive" .

Neil Tennant
Neil Tennant criticised festival organisers after the tragedy
On Monday, organisers and the bands said they had reached an "amicable agreement" over the acts' fees, which were never paid.

A joint statement also said: "The Roskilde Festival respects the groups' reasons for not performing after the tragedy.

"All parties hope that lessons learned from the festival will lead to improved safety for all future festival audiences throughout the world."

The deal means organisers will keep some of the money to improve safety at the festival site, 25 miles west of Copenhagen.

The bands' expenses will also be paid, and the remainder will be split between five charities: War Child, which aims to help children caught up in conflicts; anti-censorship organisation Freemuse; Human Rights Watch; SOS Children's Village, which provides homes for children worldwide; and the United Nations' Hunger Site internet initiative.

The sums involved were not released.

A police inquiry found that safety precautions at the festival had been sufficient on the day of the tragedy, the first major accident at the festival since it began in 1971.

Last month, festival organisers unveiled plans for the 2001 event, and promised the stage areas would be improved along with facilities for communication between staff.

A memorial grove of nine trees will also be planted on the site.

See also:

04 Jul 00 | Entertainment
Pet Shop Boy blasts Roskilde
22 Nov 00 | Entertainment
Safety plan for Roskilde festival
03 Jul 00 | Europe
Festival crush victims remembered
27 Jul 00 | Entertainment
Pearl Jam: Festival deaths 'avoidable'
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