Rhythms festival is flawed

SIR - We really have been sold down the river with ROTW. All those mealy mouthed excuses from the organisers that the event had become too big for the town and that the litter and petty crime was making it unmanageable really were just excuses weren t t

SIR - We really have been sold down the river with ROTW. All those mealy mouthed excuses from the organisers that the event had become 'too big' for the town and that the litter and petty crime was making it unmanageable really were just excuses weren't they? All they wanted was to start charging people and while it was still located in the town there was no possible way of doing this as there was no way of creating clearly defined entrances and exits.

With the Priory they have achieved that and they can now start enforcing their own rules and regulations of which I have just read with disbelief, £5 to get in? That is not so bad when all said and done but no pass outs? Surely it is not beyond the realms of possibility to have a stamp on your hand if you want to go to a pub for a break or a restaurant for something to eat? And what if the weather is bad? What then? And a restriction on the amount of alcohol you can take in! Are they seriously trying to alienate the very people that made the festival such a success in the first place?

I shall not be going this year, or any other year while the great god of greed consumes the organisers. There were ways of making ROTW manageable in the town centre location...dropping certain venues, organising the fringe better and enforcing the restriction of the sale of alcohol to underage drinkers strictly.

But they sold out and that saddens me. I have written and had published, letters to The Comet in previous years praising ROTW and how proud I was that Hitchin had such an event that bought the community and people of all races together. Now it has become just another corporate jamboree where us, the faithful audience are being treated with contempt and taken for fools. Thank you ROTW organisers...you have just lost a loyal and willing friend and donator.


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SIR - In previous years we have wandered in and out of the Rhythms festival as the mood has taken us. Typically this has been three or four times over the weekend, sampling the bands during the day and in the evening. As the kids have got older, their schedule has differed from ours but we have always met up - or at least had a chat in passing.

Now this enjoyment would cost us £20 each or £80 for the family. Clearly we are not going to pay that for what might be entertaining, but equally often is not. Pot luck at a free street festival, where we pay for food and drink if we stay is very different from wandering around a field with no re-entry option except by paying again.

Actually I don't think I will bother. The charm was always in finding something interesting in your local street or churchyard - as a bonus last year we bought a lovely necklace as a present for a friend. The Priory is a much more clinical location, and personally I've never forgiven them for the extortionate price hike at the Priory Picnic when the Round Table no longer ran the beer tent!

NICK HERSEY

The Paddock

Hitchin

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