No charges at Victoria Park concert hall during music festival: police

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A man who scaled the concert shell in Victoria Park during the opening act for last weekend’s Home County Music and Arts Festival will not be charged, say police, who described the incident as a psychological matter.

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A young, bearded man climbed onto the bandstand on Friday night and gazed over the crowd for several minutes – forcing London singer-songwriter Fiker to take a break in the opening set and startling viewers during the summer music’s return to the festival.

Emergency teams, including police, firefighters and ambulances, were called while the music was paused.

“No charges have been brought in connection with the incident at the band shell,” London Police said to Const. said Sandasha Bough on Monday.

“It doesn’t look like there were any arrests as it was a mental health call.”

Viewers were terrified by the scene, with one writing on social media: “It was disturbing.”

It was also an unexpected challenge for new Home County manager Darin Addison at the helm of the festival’s first in-person edition since 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

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“It was definitely a one-off situation,” he said. “That’s new for me.”

Organizers trimmed Fiker’s set by about 10 minutes but were able to restart Home County’s schedule afterward, Addison said.

We are very happy that it was resolved quickly and no one was injured, at least physically, and that we were able to resume our music program without interruption,” he said.

Festival organizers will keep this in mind for years to come.

we certainly We need to put our heads together with the city and the other festivals to maybe come up with some kind of likesolution to make sure that doesn’t happen again,” Addison said.

Several hundred people gathered on Friday for the opening night of the festival. Victoria Park plays host to a number of popular summer events including Sunfest earlier this month and Ribfest which lands on July 28th.

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Home County recorded an estimated 40,000 performances by its performers during the three-day festival, down slightly from its pre-pandemic audience of over 50,000. Still, organizers have a good feeling about the grand return post-COVID-19.

“Overall it was a success,” Addison said. “We’re all going through growing pains right now. . . Six months ago, the festival didn’t even know whether it was going to take place or not.”

Home County began as a folk music festival but has since encompassed a wide variety of artists. This year’s headliners included Quebec folk innovator Mélisande and pop singer-songwriter Emm Gryner, a St. Marys resident who previously played in David Bowie’s band. Juno-awarded folk star William Prince closed the festival Sunday.


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