Another illegal rave busted by police in St Albans
PUBLISHED: 16:55 24 July 2017 | UPDATED: 11:24 25 July 2017
Police rushed to stop another illegal rave in St Albans this weekend (July 22).
Hundreds of people gathered, for a second week running, in industrial unit on Camp Road for what Herts Police describe as an unlicensed music event.
A police helicopter was part of the response which peacefully dispersed the crowd, after they received numerous calls at 11pm - but no arrests were made.
The next morning, on July 23, St Albans Safer Neighbourhood Officers were talking to local residents to reassure them about the future of the makeshift rave site.
A 24-year-old man who attended the event, but would prefer to remain anonymous, said it was a well-organised, “peaceful”, and safe gathering: “It was a really good vibe, the promoters had covered everything - they had plenty of water and a trained first aider, plus security.”
He said the majority of people attending were old-enough to drink alcohol legally, with only a few people older than 28.
Although there were “definitely a few people on drugs”, there were “no major issues” and music could only be heard “directly outside the building”, he said.
Although pictures of the event are well-lit, he said the lights were turned down and lasers were used to create atmosphere: “It was a music dance event - the lights went off and they had lasers.”
About 700 people attended the first of these disused warehouse events last week, which was busted following a tip-off to police.
The attendee has been to around 30 of these raves over about seven years across the country and says the raves will keep on happening: “If a building is empty and not in use and someone is willing to put a sound system in there for something for people to do, there is no harm done.
“People will take drugs regardless in a club, pub, at a mates, or at a warehouse party. I think the police should only get involved if they believe it to be a public disturbance.
“What’s causing the public more harm them all being in a warehouse having fun, or them all walking the streets p*ssed off because they can’t party? They travel the length of the country to go to these events.”
There will not be another rave in St Albans for a few months, he believes, because the police will be checking “to try stop [the] fun”.
A similar crowd of people often attend these raves and since the first time he went along, the man has made “life long friends” who “all love the same thing, the music, the vibe, and the experience”.
This raver was at the infamous Lambeth Scumoween rave of 2015 - when police with batons, shields, and dogs violently clashed with about 300 people while shutting down an unlicensed event.
A worried St Albans local, Eleanor Pettitt, saw the aftermath of the rave at St Albans City Station. She said there were lots of people, about 10 officers, sniffer dogs, and the helicopter: “It was genuinely scary. These horrible boys got on the train and were totally off their faces.
“They were playing loud music in the carriages and were dancing around knocking into people. Then we get off the train to police everywhere.”
She described it as “unnerving” and “stressful”.