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T In The Park ready to adapt site plans to accommodate ospreys, says DF chief

By | Published on Thursday 9 April 2015

T In The Park

So, how’s everyone’s favourite bird-actually-gets-to-decide-where-a-festival-happens promotion going? Well, DF Concerts chief Geoff Ellis has been talking to BBC Radio Scotland about his company’s previously reported bid to move T In The Park to the Strathallan Estate in Perthshire.

Some of the people living near the site have raised objections to the festival moving to their neighbourhood, though the bigger problem is some ospreys who also reside next to the estate. Because the law says a big noisy music festival cannot happen within 2500 yards of nesting ospreys, and Team T would rather not have a big no-go zone cutting into their proposed festival site.

Attempts have been made to persuade the birds to nest a little further away, but the RSPB said earlier this week that the ospreys had reappeared on the estate and quickly set up home in their usual nesting spot, scuppering current plans for the festival.

But not so, says Ellis, whose on-site osprey specialists – because that’s the kind of people festivals need to have on the staff these days – say that the birds are yet to pick a site for their 2015 home. And either way, Ellis is confident the birds and his festival-goers can happily co-exist.

He told the BBC: “We are in daily contact with the RSPB and we will be working very closely with them. Whichever nest the birds take to we will work with them to agree an appropriate exclusion zone and manage it accordingly. We guarantee to do that and we’d be bound by the law to do it anyway. We will work with the RSPB so that T In The Park can continue at its new home at Strathallan Castle and the ospreys can co-exist with the festival”.

Insisting that he is still confident DF will get the go-ahead from the local council to use the Strathallan Estate for T, he said that his team were also capable of adapting the way they use to site to accommodate the local birds of prey. Noting that DF had to work around a pipeline at their old site at Balado, he said his team were used to changing site plans.

Ellis: “We used to have to [change our site plans] at Balado almost every year with the changes in the HSE guidelines to the pipeline. The one thing about a music festival is you build it up from scratch each year. It’s just a case of re-plotting positions of things on site. It’s extra work obviously but certainly it’s not a show stopper in any form”.