Melvin Benn, the boss of Festival Republic, has issued an apology after ticket holders attending Longitude Festival were injured during what was described as a ‘stampede’ on entry.
People were met by chaotic scenes at the Dublin festival site as additional security measures caused huge queues which developed into a struggle to gain access leaving some fans with injuries and without wristbands.
“The opening hour of yesterday’s entry was not what I wanted. We had encouraged people to arrive early and they heeded the encouragement to a greater level than anticipated making that first hour difficult and I owe those caught up in it an apology,” Benn said in a statement issued on the website.
“However, every single person caught up in the shock of the uncomfortable start was able to continue into the concert and enjoy the day despite that. As you would anticipate, my teams have worked throughout the night to improve the entry for today and tomorrow so everyone can enjoy Longitude at its best.”
However, fans entering the festival disagree with Benn’s apology, sharing their own version of events in the comment section of the post.
“My little brother had a three-day ticket and they were saying to keep tickets for return as there were no wristbands,” one person commented on the apology on the festival’s Facebook page. “His ticket got stolen. So what can he not go back today or tomorrow. He has a photo of his ticket would he be able to get back in with that? wristbands should have been given out to all 2 and 3 day ticket holders!!”
“I’ve never felt so claustrophobic in all my life. No one knew what they were doing and on top of that there was NO supervision for the people who were pushing forward and causing trouble,” another added.
“Crowds of people were in the area with minimal Garda presence; upon entering the official entrance queue we were left in a stagnant queue for close to two hours,” Emma Broughan told the Irish Times. “People began to get irritable and started to push and shove others within the queue.”
“There was a young girl beside me who had a full anxiety attack, which I have previously experienced, and I had to try comfort her,” she added.
“Myself, amongst many many others, were left extremely distressed.”