Future looks bleak for Brighton pubs

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Related tags: English-language films, Seaside resort, Brighton

Brighton licensees fear trade could be down for years, after reports that debris from the Fat Boy Slim gig had ruined the beachfront.Estimates...

Brighton licensees fear trade could be down for years, after reports that debris from the Fat Boy Slim gig had ruined the beachfront.

Estimates suggest that 250,000 people flocked to the beach on the south coast for the free concert earlier this month leaving tonnes of rubbish and dangerous broken glass behind them.

An army of emergency cleaners were brought in, but the council was worried that they would have to declare the beach unsafe because of broken glass that had lodged itself in between the pebbles. Reports said that it could be up to four years before it was safe to walk on the beach again.

But a spokeswoman for Brighton council said that the clear-up operation was going well and that the beach would not be closed off to the public.

Although licensees welcomed the extra business the concert brought to the seaside town, they had not predicted the resulting mess and chaos.

Local licensee, Tony Leonard said: "While it is true that some of us did very well that day, many of the venues on the front received no prior consultation and were forced to close their premises.

"The event created 110 tonnes of rubbish and there are worries that the broken glass will remain a hazard on the beach for years to come, thereby damaging tourist income for the forseeable future."

However, licensees and representatives from the tourism community will be holding a meeting in August to discuss the issue in further detail. Police were totally overwhelmed by the number of revellers and had only planned for 60,000 turning up. Yet there were fewer arrests and fewer injuries than a typical Saturday night out in Brighton.

Despite Fat Boy Slim's reluctance to hold the event next year, the council has not ruled out the possibility of the concert returning to Brighton beach for its third year.

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Fatboy Slim gig a hit with Brighton licensees (15 July 2002)

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