The Detonate Halloween event, held at Colwick Racecourse on October 29 2016, was unexpectedly closed

The organiser of a Nottingham festival which was shut down early by police because of safety fears has been refused a licence to run a new event.

Detonate Halloween festival, held at Colwick Park racecourse, had to be called-off three hours early in 2016 due to a crush of people in an overcrowded tent which was a ‘serious threat to life.’

Police say crowds were ‘angry and frustrated’ after festival goers began to spill outside the tent, which led to a surge of people pushing forward against metal barriers and safety ropes.

“You can only throw one day, one night at me, out of hundreds and hundreds.”
Ian Willis, organiser

Organiser Ian Willis was refused a licence for a smaller, one-day event at the Racecourse – Escape to Wonderland -by Nottingham City Council on February 5.

Willis says that one person could not be responsible for all decisions made on that one event and that he should not be judged for the safety breach.

The application was denied by the council on the grounds of safety, after the new festival was planned to capacitate 4,999 people.

But Mr Willis said: “This event is a much smaller event. It’s not in the same situations or the same surroundings as the Halloween one, where we know there was a lot of infrastructure problems with that event and we have learned from that.

“You can make what you will of the police assumption that I’m not fit to do this job, but I have been doing this job for 26 years, and you can only throw one day, one night at me, out of hundreds and hundreds.”

Detonate 2019 is due to go ahead with the line-up already announced and tickets on sale.