Campaigner vows to fight on to halt Glasgow's Summer Sessions gigs

A CAMPAIGNER has vowed to continue his fight to stop a series of concerts taking place in a city park despite a lack of public support.

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James Alexander is to fight on to try to stop the Summer Sessions concerts
James Alexander is to fight on to try to stop the Summer Sessions concerts

James Alexander today pledged to continue his fight to try to stop pop and rock concerts being staged in Bellahouston Park.

He spoke out after just 100 local residents signed a protest petition against the planned Summer Sessions concerts.

The psychoanalyst launched his e-petition two months ago only days after it was announced that American rock band The Killers had signed up to headline the shows in August.

The event was first held last summer, over three days, but organisers DF Concerts & Events want council permission to extend this year's festival to five days.

Permission is being sought, despite numerous complaints from residents.

Last year concerts attracted 100,000 music fans with householders complaining of boozed up concert goers urinating in gardens and performing sex acts in public.

Others said the volume was too loud.

Mr Alexander, 53, who lives a mile from the park, in Cardonald, thinks venues such as The Hydro and SECC are more suited for the concerts rather than a public park and today appealed for more residents to back his petition.

He criticised the city council for giving the go-ahead for more concerts to be held in a residential area.

He said: "That decision speaks volumes about the level of consideration our elected representatives have for local citizens.

"The fact that the petition hasn't gathered more momentum should not be construed as a sign that residents near Bellahouston approve of the concerts.

"This council has a well funded and well oiled promotional PR and spin department.

"I'm only a private citizen, I don't have the vast advertising resources of this council. I spoke up as one.

"Others who have heard about the petition and whose quality of life was affected last year believe that presenting these concerts with the attendant anti-social behaviour in our parks without a mandate from the electorate is just wrong."

Councillor Alistair Watson, executive member for land and environmental services, said: "Glasgow's vibrant music scene is renowned, and envied, worldwide, with promoters recognising that Glasgow is now a must play destination for any global artist.

"Last year the Summer Sessions delivered a significant boost to our economy by attracting visitors from outwith the city.

"I have already hosted a very well attended community engagement session regarding upcoming concerts.

"This, and the ones to follow, will give the community councils the opportunity to positively shape an even better Summer Sessions this year."

More than 30 fans were arrested by the police for public order offences at last year's event while the council claimed just 30 complaints about noise were made.

Festival promoters DF Concerts and Events said only a "minority" had caused problems and it is to work closely with the council, community leaders and the police in the run-up to August.

Mr Alexander today urged more people to back the protest by signing his petition at http:// you.38degrees.org.uk/ petitions/stop-popconcerts-in-bellahoustonpark-1.

gordon.thomson@ eveningtimes.co.uk

Local government

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