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Old Aug 03, 2007, 04:56 AM   #1
Dr W O'Boogie
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Default Mathew St Festival Liverpool 2007 Cancelled.

Bad Bad News. It was announced yesterday that the festival will not go ahead this year due to health and safety reasons. This is mainly due to the regeneration and building work currently taking place in the city centre.
The powers that be are under severe critisicm for announcing this just 3 weeks away from the date! The following is taken from the Liverpool Echo newspaper today.

Let‘s save Mathew Street festival
Aug 3 2007 by Catherine Jones, Liverpool Echo


let‘s save Mathew Street festival

THE ECHO today stepped in to save the axed Mathew Street Festival.

Seven venues today agreed to host some of the dozens of bands ditched by the event’s collapse.

The ECHO, together with Mathew Street Festival directors, urged any business that can stage a concert to come forward.

Our plan will take the event back to its roots in the pubs and bars of Liverpool and accommodate bands due to play on outdoor stages.

The idea has been given support by the city culture bosses who yesterday admitted they could not hold this year’s festival because of safety fears.

And some of the city’s biggest and best nightspots have already signed up. Venues already part of our rescue plan include Korova, Barfly and Zanzibar.

Other promoters contacted by the ECHO were enthusiastic about joining – and top names are set to be confirmed over the weekend and early next week.

Today, the men who started the Mathew Street Festival in 1993 said the show must go on.

Festival director Bill Heckle, of Cavern City Tours, said: “We want to take it back to the way it was for the first three or four years.

“We’ve negotiated with the Culture Company – all the contracts are done, all the bands are paid for and it’s an opportunity free of charge for city bars, pubs, clubs and restaurants to put bands on.”

Culture Company chief executive Jason Harborow met with Cavern City Tours yesterday to discuss the rescue plan and will hold more talks today.

He said: “We have bands, events staff and volunteers lined up. It’s a matter of working out the details.”

ECHO editor Alastair Machray said: “This event is too important for the city to lose, especially in our birthday year.”

Any venue which wants to put on live music must have the appropriate licence and its own PA and backline.

Mathew Street Festival directors will visit venues and match them up with bands.

Clubs should send details, capacity, fire regulations and in-house PA and backline systems details to bands@mathewstreetfestival.com
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Old Aug 03, 2007, 07:02 AM   #2
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I heard about this on the BBC Breakfast News. Wow....this is quite something..

I hope whatever will be left will be good for all the visitors.. and something tells me this may even make things better...I am bit confused by the title of this thread...as far as the article says there will be activities so it is not really 'cancelled' is it???
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Old Aug 03, 2007, 07:20 AM   #3
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Wow, I know several people who were supposed to play at the festival. I hope they get to play at one of the clubs instead...it would be disappointing to come all the way over from Chicago and not be able to play.
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Old Aug 03, 2007, 08:31 AM   #4
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Ooooh what a shame - I was thinking I might go along.
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Old Aug 03, 2007, 09:52 AM   #5
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I read this report online this morning, Liverpool Council are to blame for not organising it properly, I should think Cavern City Tours are regretting ever handing it over to the council!!

BTW Beatle week is not affected as it is run by Cavern City Tours!!

I have received my tickets this morning for Beatle Week!!
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Old Aug 06, 2007, 03:41 AM   #6
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Default Mathew St Festival update.

Its not all doom and gloom it seems. Looking around the city centre over the weekend, the majority of bars have made arrangements for live music over the Bank holiday.I forgot to point out originally that there were still activities going on in the bars etc- apologies- but I was just a bit concerned the council were painting a picture of "its ok- we have moved it indoors now"- when clearly the bars wouldnt be able to cope with the numbers the city has been used to over the last couple of years. Ive been going to this festival since '94 and the outdoor stages have been a saviour for those not wanting to queue at bars and literally have a bit of dancing space! There is a statement being made at 5pm apparently on some sort of "salvage" package. Rumour has it-its moving to sefton park. Fingers crossed!
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Old Aug 06, 2007, 10:03 AM   #7
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Hi Dr WO I have posted info from Sat 5th under thread "Good News?". I am sure you have read this in the Liverpool Daily Post!
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Old Aug 06, 2007, 02:24 PM   #8
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Hi Old(50?? old??) Beatchick. Gosh- you are more up to date than me! lol.
This latest situation is grasping at straws! They (the council) are talking about putting the outdoor stages on but having a ban on drinking alcohol outside.(???)
Erm- how can you enforce that after they have positively encoraged the local population to bring their own food n drink picnics for the last 10 years??? " Hey you- let me smell that Ribena bottle- pathetic!!
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Old Aug 06, 2007, 02:38 PM   #9
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They can stop alcohol being sold outside but can't stop people drinking if they bring it themselves surely!!

As you live in Liverpool will you be going to the Beatle Week festivities?
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Old Aug 08, 2007, 01:57 AM   #10
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Thats the craziness of the plan OBC- there are "alcohol free" zones all over the city centre which forbids the public to drink alcohol openly in the streets or public spaces etc. This ban is normally lifted for the festival but it doesnt appears that they are willing to do that for this year, so in affect, you will be breaking the law if you bring your own alcohol and consume it in the city centre. The whole idea stinks- the council are treating the public like children, on the other hand,however, you are quite ok to go into a bar (note- you can TRY to get in a bar) drink as much as you want- and then spill out onto the street.???? Bewildering!!
The guys at Cavern city Tours do a fantastic job in organising Beatle week OBC-I try and pop along to the gigs they organise at the Cavern and Cavern pub- Hal Bruce is defo one of my faves.
Speaking of the Cavern- Im there tomorrow night to see - wait for it- Chas N Dave !!! ( Dont ask!!) Honestly tho- should be great.
Rabitt Rabitt Rabitt haha.
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Old Aug 08, 2007, 11:05 AM   #11
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I agree Dr WO it doesn't make sense that you can roll out of a pub drunk as a skunk but can't have 1 drink outside!

I have been to Liverpool about 5 times over the last 2 years and stay at the Sir Thomas Hotel and I love going to the Cavern club and pub which is such a short walk away, not too far to stagger back to the hotel either at the end of the evening!! Hubby and I also loved listening to the Merseybeatles!!

I won't ask why Chas n Dave!!!

You never know we may meet by accident when I'm up at Beatle week!
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Old Aug 09, 2007, 04:17 AM   #12
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Yeah! Who knows. I'll be the one with the pearly outfit on haha.Drop me an email if ya need any local info. Sir Thomas Htl eh? Great choice- literally crawling distance haha. The Merseybeatles are fab. The Blue Meanies are one of my faves also. Rumours are rife about Macca doing a gig(s) at the new Arena on the Mersey in 08! Now thats just cruel teasing us with that one haha. Are you going on the tours? Mind you - you have prob been there and done that (and prob have the T shirt! haha). I work in the city and generally go for a stroll after lunch passing the town hall. I always glance up and look at the balcony and smile when i picture the lads standing there after their "homecoming" civic reception in '64. AH- theres me daydreamin again...!!
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Old Aug 09, 2007, 10:22 AM   #13
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I have good tickets for the concert on 19th January 2008, hoping to see Macca and maybe Ringo too!! But it should be a fab night anyway!!

I am hoping to see Macca on tour next year, and no I haven't been to any concerts! I don't know...... I've wasted so much time!!!!

If I need any info will drop you a line, thanks for the offer!
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Old Aug 09, 2007, 11:56 AM   #14
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Latest info:

Mathew Street Festival savedAug 9 2007

by Catherine Jones, Liverpool Echo

THE Mathew Street festival will go ahead – after dozens of pubs and clubs answered the ECHO’s SOS plea.

Europe’s biggest free music festival is returning to its roots after frantic talks failed to salvage the event’s outdoor stages.

After three days of negotiations council bosses today announced bands will perform in at least 40 city centre pubs and nightclubs over the August bank holiday weekend.

Their proposal mirrors the idea proposed by the ECHO and festival founders Bill Heckle and Dave Jones last week.

But despite 72 hours of intensive discussions it was impossible to save the event’s outdoor stages - a key feature of previous festivals.

Health and safety concerns about hosting 350,000 festival-goers in the city centre, raised in a critical report last week, could not be overcome.

City leaders today claimed the deal would preserve the “spirit of Mathew Street”.

But opposition politicians accused them of letting down the people of Liverpool by not saving the outdoor stages.

In the rescue package announced today it emerged 40 city centre venues have offered to stage bands.

They include big venues such as the Krazy House, Mood, Walkabout, the Rat and Parrot and Liverpool University’s Mountford Hall.

Organisers also hope to talk to another 20 venues including the Picket, Zanzibar, Korova, Heebie-Jeebies, PanAm, Babycream, Blue, Society, Le Bateau, Bar L1, Reflex, Varsity and Metro.

All 10 Streetwaves acts – top unsigned bands – will play at the Barfly on Bank Holiday Monday, while Creamfields has offered to host acts on Saturday, August 25.

The council said many of the bands scheduled to play the festival have already found an alternative venue.

The full listings will be announced next week, although it is thought most acts will still perform on the Sunday and Monday.

Entry is expected to be free, although individual venues will have the final say.

Council leader Warren Bradley said: “I have been hugely impressed by the spirit of co-operation between the public and private sectors to try and solve the problem.

“The safety issue around the outdoor stages has proved to be too complex to resolve for this year and I am extremely disappointed.

“The result of those efforts is a plan which provides the acts and the public with a festival which I believe retains the spirit of Mathew Street, while ensuring there is minimal risk to visitors to the city centre.’’

The festival’s four directors, Bill Heckle, Dave Jones, Alex McKechnie and Richard Blasbury, today thanked the ECHO for its role in putting together a rescue plan.

In a statement they said: “We would like to express our shared sense of shock and acute disappointment that the 2007 festival will not feature outside stages.

“But this is the time for all good Scousers to come to the aid of the party, to ensure this great city has an 800th birthday party to be proud of.

“We would also like to thank the Liverpool ECHO which has helped to facilitate this process.”

The festival was axed a week ago after a report by leading health and safety experts Capita Symonds said the outdoor stages posed significant risks to the public.

It sparked an explosion of fury from the public and senior politicians – most of whom claimed they had no idea the festival was at risk.

The council launched its own internal inquiry into the circumstances leading up to the sudden cancellation a week ago.

Deputy leader of the opposition Cllr Paul Brant criticised Cllr Bradley for his pledge, made several days ago, to try and save some outdoor stages.

He said: “There is only one thing worse than letting people down once and that is letting people down twice.

“They should never have said they could deliver a festival outside if that promise could not be kept.

“The mishandling of this situation over the last few days is just appalling. We now need to make sure we learn the lessons from this debacle quickly.”

But the decision to move the festival back indoors in its 15th year was praised by other city figures.

Chairman of Liverpool Chamber of Commerce David Wade-Smith said: “The festival is one of the showpiece events in the city’s calendar and makes a massive contribution to the economy.

“I am extremely heartened that, by working together, we have devised an alternative proposal which deals with the public safety issues and enables people to come out and party.”

Culture Company chairman Professor Drummond Bone said: “By moving the acts indoors people will still be able to enjoy safely the fantastic entertainment for which the festival is famous.”

The council also said there will be a full programme of city centre activities for families on August 26 and 27, leading into Liverpool’s 800th birthday celebrations on August 28.

The annual Liverpool International Beatles Week, organised by Cavern City Tours, will also run August 22-28.

It kicks off with a special concert to launch the Cavern album celebrating the nightclub’s 50th anniversary.


Fiasco ‘a totally unacceptable blip’

COUNCIL leader Warren Bradley today dismissed the Mathew Street festival debacle as "a blip".

In an exclusive video interview for the ECHO’s website, he urged revellers to still turn up to this year’s salvaged event and enjoy Liverpool’s 800th birthday weekend.

Cllr Bradley said: "This is a blip, a totally unacceptable blip, but I hope everyone still comes to the city and enjoys the birthday celebrations over that weekend.

"That shows what Liverpool is about. This absolute fiasco is not what Liverpool is about.

"I am appalled how this has been handled and I will do everything I can to bring to bear (sic) the responsible people."

Cllr Bradley, who says he was not made aware of any problems with this year’s festival until just a few hours before its cancellation, has ordered an internal inquiry into the circumstances leading up to it.

But he would not be drawn on whether anyone would lose their jobs over last week’s events.

He said: "There is an independent investigation going on at the moment, carried out by the chief executive, Colin Hilton.

"I sit on the appointments and disciplinary panel and I will not pre-empt any findings of that internal investigation."
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Old Aug 10, 2007, 02:38 PM   #15
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Hey OBC- you should be a newscaster haha. By the way- Chas n Dave were superb! We stayed in the Cavern as well afterwards and i was chatting to the lead singer of The Ladybugs- an all female beatles tribute band!!
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Old Aug 10, 2007, 02:50 PM   #16
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Thats great, glad you enjoyed it! I've only seen Chas n Dave in TV shows but they are good old style entertainers and know how to work a crowd!!

I love the atmosphere in the Cavern & it always seems so friendly with all ages mixing together!
Did The Ladybugs play, if not have you heard them play, and are they good?

It's a bit disappointing there will be no outside stages at Mathew Street Festival! Never mind I'll have all the other Beatle Week stuff going on. we've got tickets to go to the Penny Lane Festival on the Saturday 12-6, should be interesting, the first time they've had this!
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Old Aug 10, 2007, 03:00 PM   #17
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I checked out their Myspace page - they have posted on a live radio session of dont Let Me Down.its V good. We decided last night that we are gonna go the cavern on the thursday night before the bank holiday- i like the look of the line-up on the night and it wont be too mad then- not like the weekend! haha.
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Old Aug 10, 2007, 03:02 PM   #18
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Penny Lane Festival? Thats a new one to me? Is it a private thing ?
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Old Aug 10, 2007, 03:16 PM   #19
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I have pasted this from the Beatle week programme:

"It was forty years ago today that Sgt Pepper taught the band to play." It has been well documented that Penny Lane and Strawberry Field were the first two songs penned for what became known as the album Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Later they were identified as singles and were left off the album. So in tribute to the singles and the album, forty years on Cavern City Tours are arranging a Penny Lane Festival. Inclusive of outside stages and events in the area and incorporating bars and restaurants which will feature live Beatles music, the day is sure to be one to remember. Where do you begin? The barber, the fire station, the shelter on the roundabout, St. Barnabas Church where Paul was a choirboy (and best man for his brother Mike), Newcastle Road (John’s first home), Dovedale School (John and George’s primary school, as well as Jimmy Tarbuck’s!), Penny Lane Wine Bar - the list is endless. Access to Dovedale School is exclusive solely to people on a Cavern City Tour and includes return transport from the Adelphi Hotel to and from the area. The area is steeped in Beatles folklore (Brian Epstein’s school and the original lyrics to In My Life), the list is endless. This is their territory, their old stomping ground and we really will be following in the footsteps of The Beatles.

We arrive on Thursday afternoon so will probably end up in the Cavern in the evening! What's the line up like?
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Old Aug 10, 2007, 03:33 PM   #20
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I cant remember the names OBC but they were all Beatle tribute bands. A splendid time is guaranted for all!!
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