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You might need a right Royal budget for a street party

PUBLISHED: 13:00 04 December 2010

Britain's Prince William and his fiancée Kate Middleton react as they pose for photographers during a photocall to mark their engagement, in the State Rooms of St James?s Palace, central London on November 16, 2010.  Britain's Prince William has given his fiancee Kate Middleton the engagement ring that belonged to his late mother Diana, Princess of Wales, Clarence House said Tuesday.  The blue sapphire and diamond ring was given to Diana by William's father, Prince Charles, when they became engaged in Febr

Britain's Prince William and his fiancée Kate Middleton react as they pose for photographers during a photocall to mark their engagement, in the State Rooms of St James?s Palace, central London on November 16, 2010. Britain's Prince William has given his fiancee Kate Middleton the engagement ring that belonged to his late mother Diana, Princess of Wales, Clarence House said Tuesday. The blue sapphire and diamond ring was given to Diana by William's father, Prince Charles, when they became engaged in Febr

2010 AFP

YOUNG Royal couple Wills and Kate are finally tying the knot in April and to celebrate the nation has been given a Bank Holiday.

But north Londoners wanting to hold a street party could find themselves with very different bills depending in which borough they live.

Topping the charts is Barnet Council where it will cost on average £200 to hold a street party to celebrate the marriage on April 29.

In Westminster, fees range from £50 upwards and depend on the size and scale of the party. But likely fees are in the order of £150.

Haringey Council will charge you £120 – £60 for the road closure and £60 for a party licence.

While in Camden, it is a mere £21 since residents are not charged for road closures for community events.

Redmond Szell holds an annual street party in Gayton Road and held a party for the Golden Jubilee.

He said: “Camden has always been very supportive and has made the whole thing easier by simplifying the process. So it has been an absolute pleasure in the past.

“When I lived in Westminster, it was well nigh impossible to get what you needed to organise a street party. And I have friends in Islington who have felt positively put off.

“It is a terrible shame that it is so expensive and difficult in other boroughs because street parties are a chance for us all to bond and interact and remind our neighbours that we are all human.

“Street parties, like the recent Christmas one in Hampstead, build a huge sense of community and also keep people in the local shops and businesses and stop them running down the hill to the supermarket.

“Camden has spent the last five years encouraging people to hold street parties and simplifying the process and I hope it stays that way.

“I hope that Hampstead holds a Royal Wedding party if everyone got together to organise it – any excuse for a party.”

The Royal couple, who met at university in St Andrew’s, are due to be married in Westminster Abbey after an eight-year courtship.

Muswell Hill resident Peter Thompson, who holds an annual street party, said: “Paying £60 for a road closure is legitimate but I think the event licence is a nonsense.

“You always used to be able to hold a street party without an events licence. To have to pay for a private party for your own road is ridiculous.

“And there is a lot of bureaucracy in Haringey Council. You have to apply for a licence six weeks before and then a road closure, which you cannot get before you have the licence. It is too complicated.”

For all street parties, organisers are also obliged to take out public liability insurance, which costs upwards of £75.

Child’s Hill councillor Monroe Palmer said: “The Conservative administration in Barnet has not heard about the Big Society and they ought to talk to the Prime Minister.

“We should be encouraging street parties and the feeling of togetherness and celebration but there is not much money in Barnet at the moment.

“Various things are being cut quite severely and there is a balance. There should be no profit for the council whatsoever and prices should be kept down to a minimum.”

Barnet Council has pledged to be flexible if there is a flood of applications to hold a Royal celebration.

A spokesman said: “There are some costs involved when implementing road closures such as consulting neighbours and informing people locally through public notices.

“Should we receive a number of requests from residents wishing to stage events, the costs incurred for individual events could be reduced.”


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