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Three day summer festival of transport planned for Peak District

A three-day festival for up to 850 people celebrating travelling and adventuring by motorbike and other light transportation could take place in the Peak District every year.

The event, named The Lightweight Adventure Festival, would be hosted in fields at Tideswell Moor, off Pittlemere Lane, five miles north-east of Buxton, between Castleton and Tideswell.

If approved, this would take place from July 12-14 this summer.

An application for the festival was submitted by The Lightweight Adventure Ltd to Derbyshire Dales District Council and a licensing hearing on Wednesday, March 27, will decide its fate.

Papers filed by the company say the event would host up to 850 people in the first year with an aim to increase this figure, hoping to hold the three-day festival in July every year.

They detail that alcohol would be sold from 4pm to 11pm on the Thursday (July 11, before the first day of the festival), noon until midnight on the Friday and the Saturday and from 2pm until 10pm on the Sunday.

Live music would be played from 2pm until midnight on Friday and Saturday and from 2pm until 6pm on Sunday, with performers prior to 6pm being solo acoustic acts with no or minimal amplification. 

The evenings, 6pm onwards, would feature acts on the stages in the event’s marquee with amplified music.

A map submitted with the application details that 98 acres would be used for the festival operations as a whole, north of Bushy Heath Farm, with 60 acres for “possible demonstrations”, 12 acres for camping, 10 for the marquees and exhibitors, eight for in-vehicle camping and eight for “bushcraft” and tarps. 

Festival tickets are already on sale on the Lightweight Adventurers website, though it says its Peak District venue is “to be decided”.

It details: “Established in 2022, the Lightweight Adventure Festival celebrates travel and trail riding in all lightweight forms. 

“Back then, it was a rustic, authentic and stripped back experience, aiming to bring 30 lightweight adventurers together. It was far more successful than anticipated and brought a community together.

“Now, the festival is aimed at travellers, adventurers and all those interested in the Lightweight Adventure scene. 

“This is not a luxury boutique festival by any means. Instead, it peels back those layers of luxury  just a little and gets back to basics. Now we’re adventuring.

“The Lightweight Adventurers started out in 2018, with just two regular blokes, Jamie Thom and Marc Deri, recording what they loved doing…riding off road on their Honda CRFs. 

“Little did they know that it would grow into the thriving community it is today. 

“Our dedicated subscribers enjoy chatting, riding and, as of 2022, meeting up at The Lightweight Adventurers Festival. Passion and enthusiasm go hand-in-hand with everything we do.”

The website details that the festival would include: 

  • Incredible food, drink & music
  • motorcycle travel films
  • Bike night: machinery that’s travelled
  • Exhibitors with bikes, clothing and camping kit etc.
  • Workshops on maintenance, photography, first aid, building a rally bike, bushcraft, budget travel and more
  • Travellers’ contact board
  • Motorcycle test rides
  • Incredibly relaxed atmosphere

The event includes two nights of camping and tickets can be bought for an individual day (Friday, £49; Saturday, £55) or for the whole weekend (£99).

No objections were submitted by the district council or the police or fire services, but three objection letters were lodged by opposing residents.

The owners of a nearby caravan site at New Farm, Sue and Ian Clark, along with their neighbour Michael Critchlow, wrote: “The close location of the proposed event will have an adverse effect on our caravan site. We advertise our site as a quiet, peaceful location and we attract caravan visitors who are seeking the same.

“Both ourselves and our visitors will not appreciate the noise of a large gathering of motorbikes together with loud music in various forms all day.

“We have friends with horses which are ridden along Pittlemere Lane and Edale Lane, which is the lane past the field that the event is proposed to take place in.

“It will be impossible for these horses to be ridden out if the event takes place, as the horses and riders are very nervous of motorbikes.”

Wendy Mycock, a further resident, wrote: “I have a holiday cottage business since 1986 at my home address which is one of the closest residential addresses to the festival field location.

“Often there are families with babies and young children staying in the cottages and to have loud amplified music playing most of the hours of the days at weekends will impact their peace and enjoyment of their stays.

“One of the attractions of Forest Lane Farm Cottages is the peaceful and tranquil location to escape the urban noise intrusions they normally experience at their home locations.

“Having had a recent experience of a gathering at the same location, the constant playing of amplified loud music for over 18 hours each day over a long weekend was irritating and an intrusion to the enjoyment of my property.”

Pete Atkin, a further caravan site owner, said: “I have run a caravan site since 1968 on my farm and the people who come to the site are attracted to the peace, quiet and tranquillity of the location.”

He also referenced a recent event on the site, saying: “This type of noise intrusion travels easily to my location and the site users did complain to me at the time.”

Residents also raised concerns over the potential impact of the festival on protected bird species the curlew, a ground-nesting species which lives in the area.

The licensing hearing will consider whether it grants permission for the premises licence for the event, rejects it – along with a stop notice – or modifies the application with further restrictions.

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