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Royal Parks: Concerts

Volume 597: debated on Thursday 25 February 1999

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asked Her Majesty's Government:Whether the organisation of commercial concerts is compatible with the duty of the Royal Parks Agency and of the commitments of the Government to protect the parks from commercialisation. [HL1026]

Yes. The Government consider that the increased number of events being planned for 1999 will add to the attractions of the parks for very many visitors and will, in conjunction with the Government's increased public funding of the Royal Parks Agency announced by my right honourable friend the Secretary of State on 14 December 1998, enable the Royal Parks Agency better to maintain and enhance the parks for the benefit of all visitors.

asked Her Majesty's Government:Whether tickets for the twelve concerts which the Royal Parks Agency (RPA) is allowing to be mounted in Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens throughout the summer months are to cost £35, with tickets for corporate guests at £130 per head; how many tickets are to be on sale; how they arc being marketed; and what proportion of the returns will go to the RPA and what proportion to the commercial organisers of these events. [HL1025]

Responsibility for the subject of this question has been delegated to the Royal Parks Agency under its Chief Executive, Mr. David Welch. I have asked him to arrange for a reply to be given.

Letter to Lord Kennet from the Head of Policy of the Royal Parks Agency, Ms Viviane Robertson, dated 25 February 1999.

In the absence of the Chief Executive, Mr. David Welch. I have been asked by the Secretary of State for Culture. Media and Sport to reply to your parliamentary Question about ticket prices for concerts in Hyde Park this summer.

Ninety-six thousand, five hundred tickets, at a maximum price of £17.50, will go on sale for the concert in aid of the Prince's Trust. There will also be up to 3, 500 corporate hospitality tickets, the prices for which are expected to range from £90 to £225.

For the nine concerts to be held in July, the price of tickets has been fixed at a maximum of £35 per head. The number of tickets to go on sale will not exceed 16, 500, plus 1, 000 corporate hospitality tickets for each concert. The price of the latter will be fixed at a maximum of £130 per head.

Ticket prices for the Proms in the Parks concert have not yet been fixed but are expected to be no more than £12.50 per head. The maximum number will be 40, 000, with an expected 1, 000 corporate hospitality tickets. A concert for children is also proposed but no details have been agreed.

With the exception of the Proms in the Park concert, which we negotiate ourselves, our Marketing Partner negotiates the fees for the above concerts on our behalf. The fee charged to the event organiser/promoter is based on a number of factors, including the length of time an area of the park is in use, the number of tickets sold—although a minimum fee may be set—and whether video/television recordings are permitted. Seventy-two per cent. of the fee comes to the Agency and our Marketing Partner retains 28 per cent.

Tickets for all concerts are available from ticket agents.