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Last Updated: Thursday, 2 August 2007, 17:31 GMT 18:31 UK
Inquiry over cancelled festival
Mathew Street festival 2006
Thousands of people attended last year's event
The leader of Liverpool City Council has called for a full independent investigation after the cancellation of the Mathew Street Festival.

The musical event, due to take place on August Bank Holiday Weekend, was cancelled over health and safety fears.

Councillor Warren Bradley is currently on holiday, but claims he was unaware of any difficulties before his departure just over a week ago.

He said he was "adamant" the event could still go ahead.

The annual music festival was meant to kick off the city's 800th birthday celebrations over the August Bank Holiday weekend.

The council said the loss of space at the Pier Head and the amount of construction work going on meant there was a "significant" risk to the public.

Despite detailed planning for the event a health and safety review found the lack of space - combined with large crowds in an unlicensed environment - would pose too much of a risk to the public, the council said.

Warren Bradley
Council Leader Warren Bradley has demanded an inquiry

The deputy leader of the Labour group on Liverpool City Council, Paul Brant, told BBC Radio Merseyside the "buck stopped" with the council leader.

"Frankly I can't see how Warren Bradley can continue as leader of the city council, given that he has responsibility for delivering these programmes, he sits on the relevant boards."

But Mr Bradley defended his position saying he was only made aware of potential problems on Wednesday evening.

The health and safety officials were called in on 20 July and finished on 31 July.

He said he has scheduled a series of meetings upon his return this weekend to "ensure he gets answers".

He added: "I have instructed the chief executive to start a full independent investigation into how this has happened and why senior members of the council, including myself, were not informed.

"I am adamant that an alternative venue should be sorted to ensure that the festival event is staged over the bank holiday weekend.

"I see no reason why these issues can not be overcome."

Festival axed amid safety fears
02 Aug 07 |  Merseyside
City's birthday celebrations loom
25 Jul 07 |  Merseyside
City celebrations get royal boost
10 Apr 07 |  Merseyside
Main stage is sought for festival
08 Mar 07 |  Merseyside
City music festival 'best ever'
29 Aug 06 |  Merseyside
City's 800th party plans unveiled
21 Dec 06 |  Merseyside

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