The quite staggering failure of the London Pleasure Gardens has been a bitter counterpoint to this summer’s smooth organisation of the Olympics. This afternoon, the team behind the failed Newham arts venue received another kicking from the organisers of Bloc – July’s electronic music festival that was cancelled dramatically amid chaotic scenes approaching midnight.
Bloc have broken cover after months of awkward silence about what went so wrong that night. Their statement counters accusations that they oversold tickets, but admits that the festival was unprepared for the scrum of eager punters outside waiting to get their tickets checked. When ticket scanning was suspended to hurry people through, Bloc claim that: ‘knowledge of the suspension of scanning combined with ticket touting enabled people to gain entry to the event without having purchased a ticket’.
Elsewhere though, Bloc squarely point the finger at the London Pleasure Gardens and its mismanagement in the weeks before Bloc. With on-site venues like the 2,800 capacity ‘The Hub’ not completed on time, Bloc’s conclusion is that ‘there is no doubt that these delays severely compromised our efforts to deliver a successful production’.