Police shut down unlicensed music event near Brandon

Police in riot gear attend in an attempt to close down the event

Police have successfully shut down an illegal rave near Brandon having seized equipment and made five arrests.

They were called at around 11.20pm on Saturday 29th August, to the unlicensed music event which was taking place in the forest between Brandon and Mundford.

Specialist officers from Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire were deployed to close down the event which is reported to have had over 500 people in attendance.

More than 100 police officers were sent to the scene and entered the site in the afternoon, successfully closing it down at 6.30pm.

A number of resources including the drone unit, police helicopter, dogs and specially trained public order officers worked to close down the event in a safe and controlled manner.

Officers seized audio equipment, generators, the rig and a large flat-bed lorry which was used to transport the equipment.

Police were first alerted to the event after a member of the public called reporting a large number of cars queuing to access a fire route.

People were directed to leave the area and anyone who failed to do so were arrested. Five people were arrested. Three were dealt with at the scene and issued with a £100 fine while two were taken in custody and later issued with £100 fine.

The music event took place in Thetford Forest between Brandon and Mundford

People living in Brandon, Weeting, Hockwold and Mundford have reported hearing music from the event from just after 3am today, Sunday 30th August.

Assistant Chief Constable Nick Davison, who continues to lead the operation, said: “Due to the number of people in attendance, we needed specialist teams to enter the site to close it down. Officers trained in public order, experienced in dealing with such events, entered the site and turned the music off around 6.30pm.

“I would like to thank local residents for their patience and understanding while we brought this to an end. We know these events cause disruption which is why we’ve taken positive action to make sure the event didn’t go on into a second night. Due to the nature of the location and numbers of people in attendance, this was a challenging event to disrupt and required mutual aid from other forces which takes time to arrange.

“Officers did meet some hostility when entering the site with bottles and cans used as missiles and thrown at officers. Fortunately, no one was injured.

“It’s extremely disappointing to see these types of events taking place when coronavirus continues to be a real threat to our communities. We’re working to identify the organisers and will do everything within our power, where evidence is available, to prosecute and bring them to justice.”

The event comes just days after police warned those organising unlicensed music events that they face robust action following new laws that came into force allowing heftier fines to be issued.

Police in England were given new powers from Friday to fine organisers of illegal gatherings of more than 30 people up to £10,000.

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