Parking concern over Drum Day

The large crowds in Astley Park, Chorley, for the Big Drum Day event
The large crowds in Astley Park, Chorley, for the Big Drum Day event
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A popular annual music festival has hit a sour note with residents in a Chorley village.

The Big Drum Day in Astley Park, Chorley, has come under fire with motorists attending Sunday’s event have been blamed for causing unecessary damage.

Chorley Borough and Lancashire County Councillor Mark Perks says cars parked on grass verges in his neigbouring ward of Astley Village have caused damage”.

He is angry with Chorley Council which jointly staged the festival of Afro-Brasilian drumming, dance and song.

The council urged drivers prior to the festival to be considerate to residents who live close to Astley Park and either walk or use the town centre car parks, which are free on Sundays.

There were a limited number of spaces available on Hallgate car park.

But Coun Perks claimed no local community notice was given and that the arrangements for the event were too inadequate.

He said: “This is the second time this has happened.

“Last time I complained and assurances were given more parking controls would be in place.

“This did happen for the previous event, but Sunday’s reverted back to a very poor service from Chorley Council.”

He added: “I did suggest they used car parks over at Woodlands and ask visitors to walk from there to the park.

“There has also been damage done to signs near the lodge entrance into the park again. I’ve reported this to the council.”

But Chorley Council said it has had positive feedback from people who attended.

Coun Bev Murray, who is responsible for parks and open spaces at Chorley Council, said: “The Big Drum Day was once again a brilliant event that everyone who attended really enjoyed.

“The council had a traffic management plan in place and extra staff were brought in to manage the parking at Hallgate.

“Unfortunately, Chorley Council does not have the authority to restrict or police on-street parking.

“Due to the heavy rainfall we have had recently, we were not able to use Westway Fields as an alternative car park.

“As is always the case with events, drivers were encouraged to park free in the town centre and walk the short distance to Astley Park.

“This event was publicised in the local area and we aim to cause minimal disruption to surrounding residents who do not wish to attend.”