Troubled ‘Pevfest’ replaced by fun day

PEVENSEY’S popular free music festival will be replaced next year by a family fun day.

Pevfest had grown over the years and 2011’s free charity event saw thousands descend on the villages of Pevensey and Pevensey Bay to watch more than 50 local bands and musicians.

However, there was some alcohol-related crime in the village on the day, leading to fears by residents and traders that the event might not return.

Last month organisers had said they planned to run the event again next year but have changed their mind after speaking to police and the council. Instead there will be a family fun day in Pevensey Bay without any music acts.

Sussex Police told organisers that with the Olympics they could not guarantee appropriate policing for such a large event.

Shirley Mackinnon, chair of the committee, said, “We have taken several things into account and feel next year we would like to concentrate on raising even more money for charity and concentrate on a family event, a part that this year was very popular.

“This will be for all ages; young to the over 65s. We will not have music during the day in the way we had before but if any of the pubs want to have music in the evening that is up to them.

“The Beach Tavern for example, always has music on a Saturday evening and Stefan has said he will do that as normal but after the family day has ended. This will only involve one or two bands.”

The 2012 event will be called Family Fun Day and take place on July 21, 10am-6pm in Pevensey Bay. All money raised will go to two children’s hospices, Chestnut Tree House and Demelza House.

Ms Mackinnon added, “Both charities would like to work jointly with us and we shall be tapping into their contacts to enable us to have plenty of stalls, side shows, beach games, events and attractions.

“Current plans include a parade and also to have a dog show and a talent show for children and adults.

“We shall link it to the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in some way. We want to work with the local communities as well as the parish council, Wealden District Council and the police.”

Ms Mackinnon said, “This does not mean we will not think about Pevfest again one day but not yet.”