Page last updated at 13:55 GMT, Monday, 18 January 2010

New bid to re-launch Slough Mela

Mela performers (generic)
Thousands of people attended the 2007 Mela event in Slough

Organisers of an Asian cultural festival in Berkshire have appealed to businesses to resurrect the event.

The Slough Mela festival has been cancelled for the past two years in a row over policing costs.

East London Festival Ltd said it could not afford a £31,000 policing bill for the one-day event.

Director Ray Siddique, who said the event costs more than £160,000 to run, has appealed to the community to help raise cash.

He added: "There was a backlash last year from a lot of people who were angry and annoyed the event was cancelled.

"This time we are appealing for local organisations and the community to help with the police costs.

We need people to commit by the end of January as planning for an event this year must start in February
Ray Siddique, East London Festival

"For that, we can offset that bill and look at restarting the event."

Mr Siddique said he had looked into raising ticket prices from £5 to £10 for adults but believed this would discourage people from coming and damage the event's reputation.

"What many people don't realise is that we have no financial help from the council.

"We need people to commit by the end of January as planning for an event this year must start in February."

Mr Siddique was previously involved in organising the summer event between 2000 and 2005.

Thames Valley Police said the level of police resources allocated is based upon a number of factors, including the event management plan, community information and previous reports of crime and criminality.

The event was also cancelled in 2008. The previous organiser, Complete Party Services, blamed the policing bill, road sign costs and the lack of a local authority grant for the decision to cancel.



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SEE ALSO
Slough Mela cancelled over costs
24 Jun 09 |  Berkshire
Summer return for Mela festival
11 Jun 09 |  Berkshire
Mela cancelled over 'rising' cost
26 Jun 08 |  Berkshire
Thousands party at Mela festival
07 Aug 05 |  Berkshire

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