Saturday, 28 August 2010

NCC Have Knackered This Year's East Midlands Vegan Festival

I've just found out that NCC has refused use of the Council House for the 2010 East Midlands Vegan Festival. They have said that it causes too much 'wear and tear' on the building. Hmmm.

Organisers have tried to look at other options including holding it in the Market Square but none of the dates requested "have found favour with the Council".

As a result there is unlikely to be an EMVF this year and in future years it looks likely that it will be held elsewhere in the region.

I can't help wondering if the problem is that it's not the 'right' type of event rather than the BS excuse that's been given. Animal rights activists? People with dreadlocks? That will never do.

Isn't that what you pay the hire fee for i.e. for cleaning and general maintenance of the venue etc? Is NCC refusing* use of the Council House for all other similar sized events? I think we should be told.

Update - perhaps we might be.

Although vegans are a relatively small constituency the organisers unashamedly aim the event at the wider public as well as preaching to the converted. It is mostly a trade based festival rather than political/campaigning and provides an opportunity for local companies to promote their vegan goods. It's an event with national significance for vegans and will be a significant loss for Nottingham.

* NCC's website gives some indication of the types of events it accepts or declines at the Council House here.


Anonymous said...

Seems unfair when NCC think that having 20 tons of builders sand dumped in the Market Square, alongside over-priced fairground rides and a murky pond, is OK but an event like this is not suitable for the hallowed halls of the Council House.

As a vegetarian, I feel discriminated against by this decision. Which carniverous bastard is responsible?

VeggiesPat said...

Extracts from Council House Booking guidelines

Types of event that we accept:

* Corporate and private business dinners and lunches
* Seminars and conferences
* Product launches

Types of event that we do not accept:

* Product launches and displays for alcoholic drinks
* Seminars and conferences by political groups or on subjects that may cause the Council embarrassment

The Ballroom Holds:
* 20 tables with 10 chairs at each, with or without stage (200 people max)
* 200 for a reception/standing


Pat comments:

Whilst the East Midlands Vegan Festival attracted 2000 people, they were strictly counted in and out, such that never more than 200 were in at any one time.

200 different people coming, and going throughout the day, surely cause no more wear and tear than the same 200 people moving about and using the facilities throughout, for example, an all-day corporate reception.

What a shame that the Council cannot support and encourage healthy, compassionate and climate-friendly vegan food.

allnottinghambasearebelongtous said...

Pat, I couldn't agree more. I've been meaning to do a follow-up now I've got the FoI response, hopefully within a reasonable delay, in the meantime you can view the reply via the link in the article.