Stall Holders To Quit Havre Des Pas Festival?
Local stall holders fear they might not be able to attend this year’s Havre des Pas Seaside Festival because of a ”significant” increase in pitch fees.
The cost to trade at the festival has more than tripled for some business owners – which they say is the result of the Parish pulling funding from the event.
Jayne Grant – who owns the Prosecco Van – worries the increase will see local suppliers replaced by UK businesses:
”Last year I paid £200, now that has gone up to £900.
”Obviously we have to provide money to hire toilets and security officers now, but the price increase isn’t justifiable.
”Local stall holders just won’t be able to go, or if they do go, I suspect they will be out of pocket.”
Brian Smith – who owns Alfresco Events – says his fees have jumped from £320 to £900:
”The stall holders weren’t even consulted about this.”
Meanwhile, Jason Maindonald from the Jersey Development Company – a business set up by the States of Jersey – has been appointed as the organiser of the event.
But Mr Smith says they were told Mr Maindonald wasn’t going to be put in charge of events anymore, following complaints surrounding last year’s controversial Arctic Village.
There were complaints that the Christmas event was ‘overpriced’ and ‘tacky’.
”He decides out of the blue that they are going to charge stall holders £900,” Mr Smith says.
”If it was run by a professional body, then they would have sought sponsors to help put on the event.
”It was always a free event, and now people will also have to pay an entry fee.”
Mr Smith says the opportunity to run the event should have gone out to tender:
”It should have, so that it could be run by a professional body.”
The changes are being implemented by the Havre des Pas Improvement Group – which is made up of deputies Russell Labey, Judy Martin and Scott Wickenden.
But Mr Smith claims no one is taking responsibility for the festival:
”Is it a Parish event, is it being organised by the Improvement Group, or is it a Jersey Development Company event?
”There has been no consultation with the small businesses involved in the festival.”
Organisers have also announced plans to bring over UK tribute acts for the events, but Mr Smith argues those opportunities should be given to local acts and performances.
Channel 103 is still waiting for a response from the Havre des Pas Improvement Group.