Brixton’s annual free Splash street party has been called off after a reported spike in violence, drug-taking and arrests marred last year’s tenth anniversary event.
Lambeth Council last night rejected an application for this summer’s party saying south London’s answer to the Notting Hill Carnival had become “a victim of its own success” and grown “potentially dangerous” .Why on earth would anyone else need an ‘answer to the Notting Hill Carnival’..?
Ros Griffiths, who helped found the festival but stepped aside in 2010, said she hoped the postponement would allow a fresh start. She said: “Last year the local reaction was that it has lost direction.
“Traders were complaining, residents were complaining and there was a problem. The event got too big and moved away from what it was meant to be about.”
She said the original event was aimed to showing (sic) Brixton’s independent traders and talented young people, using local businesses and products to keep the money within the neighbourhood.So it started with good intentions, and has lost its way?
The Splash is a non-profit community organisation established in 2005 which also runs an outreach programme for young people to get access to the arts, part-funded by the Arts Council. Organisers also offered a qualified stewarding training programme for young people to get work experience controlling the crowds during the event.
The company currently has three board members but none were available for comment last night.
In a statement the board said the town hall planned to take over the festival and accused the council of “railroading” them. They added: “Lambeth’s dwindling financial support and physical support over the last few years shows its true feelings towards the event.”So it’s soaking up taxpayer moolah courtesy of the Arts Council?
Curiouser and curiouser…