Radio 1 boss confirms Big Weekend will go ahead with heightened security

Radio 1 boss confirms Big Weekend will go ahead with heightened security

Radio 1′s Big Weekend will take place this Saturday and Sunday with heightened security following the Manchester attack, the station’s boss has said.

Radio 1 controller Ben Cooper assured music fans the Hull event will go ahead but with increased security involving armed police, dogs and double searches.

The decision was made on Wednesday following a safety meeting with emergency services, local authorities and event security.

Speaking two days after the attack that killed 22 people following an Ariana Grande concert, Cooper said: “Our thoughts are with all those who have been affected by Monday night’s events.

“What happened at Manchester Arena has obviously dominated our thinking about how we can provide a safe and secure environment this weekend.

“That has been our absolute priority and security has been increased for our audiences, artists and for those working across the weekend.”

Detailing the extra safety measures, he continued: “We are going to look at providing two rounds of thorough searches.

Radio 1's Ben Cooper.
Radio 1′s Ben Cooper (Vincent Dolman/BBC/PA)

“We have the site where the event is taking place and five transport hubs where over 80% of our audience will be getting on a bus.

“You will be thoroughly searched and your bags will be searched before you enter the bus, and then you will be searched again before you enter the site.

“When you are at the transport hubs there will be a police presence with visibly armed officers.

“People in cars will be taken into a safe zone and they and their vehicles will be searched, and we will be using dogs as well.

“No one will come on to the site unless they are searched.”

Cooper confirmed that no artists had pulled out of the line-up, adding that the organisers had received huge support from across the music industry.

Little Mix taking the stage at last year's event.
Little Mix taking the stage at last year’s event (Daniel Leal-Olivas/PA

“Listening to Radio 1 for the last two days, the overwhelming response from our young audience has been that this will not stop us living our lives, this will not stop us going to concerts and it will not stop us enjoying our youth,” he said.

“What we have got to do as the BBC is make sure that we provide a safe and secure environment for that to happen.”

After receiving the green light for the event, Mr Cooper said that organisers would look into how to make a fitting tribute to the Manchester victims over the weekend.

Now in its 14th year, the two-day show includes an international line-up, featuring the likes of Katy Perry, Lorde, Kasabian, Stormzy, Biffy Clyro, Little Mix, Dua Lipa, Zara Larsson and Christine And The Queens.

Radio 1 presenters Nick Grimshaw, Clara Amfo and Greg James will be broadcasting from the event, sharing interviews and live performances with listeners, and highlights will also be streamed live on the channel’s website.

More in this Section

Martin Scorsese says The Irishman’s de-ageing tech is ‘evolution of make-up’Martin Scorsese says The Irishman’s de-ageing tech is ‘evolution of make-up’

Andrea Corr tells of ‘suffering in silence’ after miscarriagesAndrea Corr tells of ‘suffering in silence’ after miscarriages

Children help Alec Baldwin and wife reveal gender of fifth babyChildren help Alec Baldwin and wife reveal gender of fifth baby

EastEnders star Dean Gaffney axed from WalfordEastEnders star Dean Gaffney axed from Walford


Lifestyle

As UK legend John Surman gets ready to play at Cork’s jazz fest, he tells Philip Watson about his well-travelled career and why he’s so angry about Brexit.Jazz legend John Surman on a well travelled career and why he's angry about Brexit

Dr Naomi Lavelle answers a weekly science question.Fish live in water all their lives but does that mean that they never get thirsty or do they even drink at all? To answer these questions we need to look at where the fish live.Appliance of Science: Do fish ever get thirsty?

More From The Irish Examiner