Thursday 19 October 2017

T in the Park move backed by stars

Jim Kerr has given his public backing to the plan to move T in the Park to Strathallan Castle
Jim Kerr has given his public backing to the plan to move T in the Park to Strathallan Castle

A host of pop stars, DJs and music managers have backed plans to stage T in the Park at Strathallan Castle this year as a consultation on the proposals prepares to close.

Simple Minds frontman Jim Kerr has contributed to the online consultation, with Perth and Kinross Council saying that the festival is "truly a colossal part of Scotland's cultural identity".

DJ and TV presenter Edith Bowman, who has worked at T in the Park for more than a decade, said the festival is always staged with "care, thought and attention to detail", and will help local businesses.

Managers of artists including Paolo Nutini, Biffy Clyro, Franz Ferdinand and Snow Patrol have also contributed to the consultation, highlighting what they see as the cultural, social and economic benefits of staging the festival.

DF Concerts, which runs Scotland's biggest music festival, announced the move last summer as safety concerns grew over the proximity of the Balado site to a large oil pipeline.

It was initially thought that the event could operate in the grounds of the 19th-century castle with a permitted development and a public entertainment licence, but the discovery of osprey at Strathallan meant a formal planning application and an environmental statement was required with Perth and Kinross Council.

A 28-day consultation period on the application closes tonight, with a decision expected in April.

Despite the ongoing application, the line-up for the festival held between July 10 and 12 has been announced with Kasabian, The Libertines, Twin Atlantic and Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds named as some of the headline acts.

Writing in support of the Strathallan application, Simple Minds singer Kerr said: " Among artists, promoters, media, and music fans worldwide, the successful and unique reputation of T In The Park is second to none, and as such it is something that all of Scotland can and should be proud of.

"Having forged this reputation over the last two decades, we certainly hope that there is many decades still to come from this event which is truly a colossal part of Scotland's cultural identity."

A number of objections to the plans have also been submitted with concerns raised over a number of factors including wildlife, transport and the economic impact of the festival.

One contribution to the consultation said roads in the area are not capable of handling the anticipated volume of traffic with about 25,000 vehicles expected, while another stated that the planning application is only "for the financial benefit of one resident".

Entrepreneur Sir Tom Hunter wants the festival to go ahead in Perthshire.

He said: "This is a fantastic event for Scotland that delivers on so many levels - economically, socially and musically ... Let's hope we can find a way of making this happen that mitigates any downside whilst delivering another world-class T in The Park."

Biffy Clyro manager Dee Bahl wrote: " I am in full support of T in the Park's relocation to Strathallan estate.

"T in the Park was pivotal to Biffy Clyro's journey to success with the band having played in a grassroots capacity on the T-Break Tent right through to headlining the main stage last year.

"The event has huge economic benefit to Scotland as well as cultural and social significance, and is a rite of passage for many of the country's young people.

"It also nurtures talent like Biffy Clyro from the grassroots up and I look forward to the next chapter in its history."

Mike Bawden wrote: "As Paolo Nutini's manager, I would like to express my support of the relocation of T in the Park to Strathallan Castle estate.

"Economically, T in the Park is good business for Scotland - worth £15.4 million to the Scottish economy and just under £3 million to the local area each year.

"It has been a significant part of Paolo's journey. As it has been with many, many other artists.

"Paolo started his career with the support of DF Concerts - from his first gig on the T Break Stage at T in the Park through to being the penultimate act on the main stage last year - this event is a great platform for artists to grow and develop not just here in the UK but internationally too.

"On behalf of Paolo, and myself, and for the reasons stated, we very much support the relocation of T in the Park to Strathallan Castle estate."

It comes as Mark Ronson was named as the latest high-profile addition to the T in the Park line-up.

The award-winning producer and musician, who released hit Uptown Funk with Bruno Mars last year, will play a DJ set on the opening night in what will be his first appearance at the festival.

Other acts added to the line-up include Glasgow-based band Admiral Fallow, who will play on the Sunday.

Everything Everything, Jack Savoretti, Rae Morris, Marmozets and Saint Raymond have also been named as performers and tickets are to be released this Friday.

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