‘Frustration’ over Elvis Festival stalls
ORGANISERS of the Elvis Festival in Porthcawl will have to wait until the week before the event begins to find out if it can sell food and merchandise.
This year’s festival takes place from Friday, September 22, to Sunday, September 24.
Every September thousands of Elvis fans descend on the Welsh seaside town for a unique celebration of The King, bringing with them their blue suede shoes, Vegas jumpsuits and best fancy dress outfits.
Efforts had been made by organisers to try and make the festival more family-friendly by offering food stalls and a family area.
But they will have to wait until Thursday to find out if they will be granted a licence for street trading.
Plans to sell food and merchandise are under threat after Bridgend council’s highways officials objected to the proposal.
A report is due to go before Bridgend council’s licensing sub-committee on Thursday, September 14, over an application for a grant of street trading consent.
The purpose of the report, from corporate director of operational and partnership services Andrew Jolley, is to determine an application for the grant of a street trading consent for the family zone, on The Esplanade, for “Elvis” merchandise and for food outlets in John Street and on The Esplanade.
The application has been submitted by Porthcawl Elvis Festival Ltd, which has been referred to the sub-committee due to objections being raised by the highway authority.
The report says: “The Manager of the Highways Network, Bridgend County Borough Council raised initial concerns about granting the organisers permission to trade on the highway.
“The lack of such permission would mean that any street trading consent, if granted, could not take effect.
“A number of meetings have been held and correspondence exchanged on the logistics and organisation of the Festival, including the Council’s Events Safety Advisory Group.
“However, the objection to trading on the highway has not been withdrawn.”
Festival organiser Peter Phillips said: “It’s more frustrating than stressful. I’m disappointed by the decision taken by the highways department.”
The report does not give a recommendation to the committee, but lists two options available to the sub-committee.
They are to either grant the consent subject to the standard conditions and any other conditions the sub-committee deems reasonably necessary, or refuse the application.