A public park exists for the free enjoyment of the public. The best way to measure the success of a park is by asking park users. That’s why over the last two weeks, the Friends of Finsbury Park has asked park users to document their experiences of the 2017 Wireless Festival.
Since this year's Wireless Festival I’ve been contacted by over 100 local residents and park users, many of whom wanted to share with me experience of the Wireless Festival. I am very grateful for all those who took the time to write and share their experiences, and in particular to those who sent in pictures and video evidence. Many of the responses make for quite worrying reading, and share an insight into people’s experiences of the festival which have not been properly seen before. People’s experiences of the festival broadly fall into six main areas:
- Use of and dealing of drugs;
- Safety and anti-social behaviour;
- Stewarding and policing;
- Noise levels;
- Litter, damage and defecation;
- Park closures and environmental concern.
The following report represents a summary of the testimony that we’ve been given by members of the community, with associated pictures and examples of what people had to say. The testimony has been redacted to exclude the second name, email and address of those who gave evidence, for privacy reasons. I would urge all park users, and all those responsible for the management of the Wireless festival, to read this report and act on the testimony of local people to ensure that many of the issues they have experienced do not repeat themselves in future.