Odyssey to review Hardwell concert

Published Monday, 10 February 2014
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The Odyssey Trust has announced that it will carry out a review into the major incident at Thursday's Hardwell concert.

Odyssey to review Hardwell concert
Police and emergency vehicles at the scene at the Odyssey Arena. (© UTV)

Young people were showing signs of drink and drug misuse at the over 16s event which was headlined by the Dutch DJ.

Dozens of people were treated for intoxication and 18 were admitted to hospital.

The PSNI said over 300 people arrived at the Odyssey Arena on Thursday night either drunk, on drugs, or were underage and were barred from entry into the venue.

Three hospitals were put on stand-by and extra medical staff were drafted in to deal with the situation.

The Odyssey said that 9,500 tickets were sold for the event and a number of concert-goers arrived at the venue already intoxicated and were not admitted.

A temporary treatment facility was established in the grounds of the complex for those needing attention.

It's believed to be the first time a medical facility of that kind had been put in place for such an emergency.

Odyssey Arena general manager Adrian Doyle, had said after the incident that he was confident they had sufficient staff to maintain a safe and enjoyable concert.

But eye-witness footage captured fights that broke out among the young revellers inside.

The review, which will be chaired by the Chief Executive of the Odyssey Trust, Robert Fitzpatrick, will meet with all of the relevant stakeholders involved; assess the preparation and event plan made for the night; the implementation of that plan and the effectiveness of the Odyssey Arena and its partner organisations to deliver that plan.

The review will conclude with any recommended actions arising.

It is expected that the review will be completed by Friday 21 February.

There has been some concern that despite announcing a review, the Box nightclub at the Odyssey, is advertising drinks promotions as cheap as 90p per drink.

Colin Neill from Pubs of Ulster said that this was an "ill-conceived promotion".

"This promotion has been run by this premises previously and when tested and mystery-shopped it was found that they did have the controls in place to stop people over-consuming.

"But I think in the current climate I'd prefer that it was removed."

The security consultant for the Utopian Leisure which runs Box stressed that what happened at the Odyssey last week had nothing to do with the nightclub, which they added, manages drink promotions responsibly.

© UTV News
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13 Comments
David in Down wrote (262 days ago):
How can Mr Maines justify a cheap drink promotion at the Odyssey days after an emergency situation developed because of alcohol. Its simply outrageous and shows quite clearly a cavalier attitude to alcohol consumption.
Daryl in Belfast wrote (262 days ago):
I'm coming 21 in May and have been to several concerts in the Odyssey and never experienced anything like that while there. Even after I turned 18, it was incredibly hard to obtain an alcoholic drink in the actual concert hall area. Even with my own I.D I was still doubted. As for blaming box, it's not their fault, they didn't hand the booze out, or the drugs, not did they force anybody to intoxicate themselves. Reducing prices of drinks won't make anyone drink more responsibly. Drinks prices have been rising over the last few years and there is still the same problems. The odyssey weren't to blame for the young mans death - his irresponsibility while drinking caused his death!!
J in NI wrote (263 days ago):
Hope everyone enjoyed the "concert" because it'll be a long time before Hardwell is back!! Not my scene, but it's a shame that another concert has been cancelled on the back of this......sad for those who have purchased tickets and for the DJ! Great representation of Northern Ireland - to all those foaming at the mouth - well done!!
Des in Bangor wrote (263 days ago):
What happened at the Oddssey happens on a lesser scale in Bangor town centre every fri/sat night all ages,3 ambulances,upteen police in the space of 50yds in High St.Its time these people got billed for the medical treatment they receive and made to pay or face a court hearing.
thomas mccaul in derry wrote (263 days ago):
We have had this problem for years and it stems from the parents attitudes to drinking. We needed to educate adults about the dangers of drink and we didn't and weve left it too long and now we are paying the price. Raise the minimum age for drinking and make the fines higher for people who break the law. we are generating a nation of alcoholics and we are all to blame.
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