Traffic chaos hit the start of this year's Isle of Wight Festival. Picture by Jennifer Burton.
DESPITE this year’s traffic chaos, more than 70 per cent of households living near the Isle of Wight Festival site continue to support holding the annual event at Seaclose Park a survey has found.
However, close to 60% of those who responded to Newport Parish Council’s latest residents’ survey thought this year’s traffic congestion and parking problems were, at best, avoidable.
The survey revealed more than 80% believed the planning for adverse weather conditions on the part of the promoters, the Isle of Wight Council, the police and the ferry operators was inadequate or worse and 55 per cent thought the licence for the festival should be reviewed.
The parish council extended this year’s survey to take in more properties closer to the town centre between Seaclose and the main shopping area.
Highlighting the continued local support for the event, Cllr Shirley Smart, chairman of the parish council’s planning and licensing committee, said: "I welcome this as the parish council has consistently supported the festival but it is important to note that, after what happened this year, the number of households uncomfortable with the possibility of a progressive increase to 90,000 people at the event has increased to more than 70 per cent of those who responded."
As previously reported, aerospace firm GKN has called for the festival’s licence to be reviewed over fears about public safety and disorder.
Large parts of the Isle of Wight were brought to a standstill by traffic chaos at the start of this year’s festival, leading to production problems for the East Cowes factory after workers were caught in jams.
The parish council, which hopes to take an active role in the review, said it would continue analyse the results of their own questionnaire, which will be shared with Solo, the council and all other interested parties.