Illegal rave finally dispersed after 21 hours

·3-min read
Police were assisted by public sector and military agencies (David Cheskin/PA) (PA Archive)
Police were assisted by public sector and military agencies (David Cheskin/PA) (PA Archive)

An illegal rave that attracted more than 1,000 people has been dispersed 21 hours after police first ordered revellers to leave the site.

The crowds descended on a site close to the village of East Lulworth at around half-past midnight on Sunday, Dorset Police said.

The force cordoned off roads and ordered people to leave using powers under the Public Order Act, but by 1pm the party was still in full swing.

The force issued a plea to revellers not to cross military training land in a bid to get to the rave.

At 9pm, Dorset Police said the last of the partygoers and vehicles had left.

Officers were aided by the Ministry of Defence, Dorset Council and Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service to break up the rave.

A post about the event on Dorset Police’s Facebook page received more than 1,000 comments on Easter Sunday – mostly telling the force not to ruin the party and comparing it to lockdown rule-breaking by politicians.

One Facebook user commented: “Well, from what I’ve heard they were only there for less than 10 minutes, and it’s a business meeting.

Boris can do what he wants, so they can too. Why not try and find some real criminal behaviour?”

Another said: “They’re just having a bit of cake for 10 minutes to polish off the cheese and wine!

“When the people that govern our country don’t even follow the rules how can you expect a few peaceful, happy, music loving ravers to do so.”

Deputy Chief Constable Sam de Reya said on Sunday evening: “Throughout the incident we worked in partnership with other public sector and military agencies to achieve the positive resolution.

Making sure that a site is cleared without any escalation or moving the risk to our road network is always a difficult process

Deputy Chief Constable Sam de Reya

“Police officers entered the site and directed people to leave the scene of the unlawful gathering using powers under the Public Order Act.”

She continued: “Due to the large scale of the event and the inherent impact of dispersing such a high number of people, this process took some time.

“In our operations we always have to balance enforcement activities with the safety of our officers and all those involved.

“Making sure that a site is cleared without any escalation or moving the risk to our road network is always a difficult process.”

The deputy chief constable added a police presence would remain in the area and thanked local residents for their patience.

The force said previously it would be investigating any criminal offences with a view to prosecution.

Anyone with any information is urged to contact police on 101 quoting incident number 17:29, or by calling charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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