Police given special powers for Knebworth festival

Crowds at a previous Knebworth concert

Crowds at a previous Knebworth concert - Credit: Archant

POLICE have been granted special powers for Knebworth dance festival, Eastern Electrics 2013.

The techno bonanza starts on Friday and finishes on Sunday, and officers have been granted a dispersal order.

This means they can disperse groups of two or more that are causing or are likely to cause harassment alarm or distress to the public.

Police can ask people to leave and not return within 24 hours. Failure to comply can lead to arrest.

Superintendent Simon Hawkins leads the team who have been working with the organisers in preparation for the weekend.

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He said: “Working with both councils we have been able to introduce the dispersal order to give police additional powers to deal with anti-social behaviour and associated crime.

“I would like to reassure people coming to the festival and the wider local community that crime and anti-social behaviour at festivals which have taken place at Knebworth House in recent years have been relatively low in recent years.

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“However, we are continuously looking at ways to ensure these figures remain low so that festival goers can enjoy their weekend safely and there is minimal disruption to the local communities.

“The powers of a dispersal order fit with our policing style of friendly but firm and will only be used where necessary to deal with those intent on disrupting the event with criminal activity.”

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