Children's rave promoter 'almost in tears' after police claims about 'chaos and crime'

The promoter of popular children's raves "was almost in tears" after West Midlands Police claimed his events "caused chaos and crime".

The children's rave will no longer be held in Wednesbury
The children's rave will no longer be held in Wednesbury

Tyler Jones was dismayed to see West Midlands Police's objections to his company Reload holding a children's event at MJ’s Bar and Venue in Bridge Street, Wednesbury, on December 20.

The police urged Sandwell Council to stop a planned Christmas rave, claiming "hundreds of children were running around the streets causing chaos" after a similar Halloween rave.

However, Mr Jones refuted accusations of trouble claiming there was not one incident inside the event and any trouble was caused by youngsters who had been turned away.

He said: "We are trying to do something positive for the youngsters round here, we started this to keep them off the streets and away from crime so for the police to accuse us of creating crime is really upsetting.

"We had to find a bigger venue because of how many tickets we were selling, parents trust us and we have had lots of support from parents because they know there is nothing for kids to do."

He added: "Of course there was lots of children walking into Wednesbury after the last event but they were trying to get home that's all. We are trying to do something good for the local economy and community and to get this kind of opposition hurts."

Parent Mel Wilkins posted on social media about the Sandwell Christmas rave cancellation.

She said: "What a shame, over all it was a good night for all the local kids and very few caused issues. I live round the corner and I haven't heard of loads of kids causing chaos afterwards."

Tania Richmond added: "The fact there were so many kids being turned away shows the demand. Teens have nowhere to go, my daughter was looking forward to the Christmas one."

Part of the evidence in the police's report was from an "anonymous licensing officer" and an "off duty policeman" who had seen fights in the queue.

An anonymous licensing officer for West Midlands Police said: “A further log from a member of the public reported hundreds of children running around the nearby roads causing chaos.

“On attendance officers found groups of youths in the area wondering around causing issues and it was clear there was an issue dispersing groups away from the location.”

Large numbers of under 16s unaccompanied during peak Christmas trading times also raised concerns to West Midlands Police.

Children as young as 11 attend the raves where they dance to music and have the chance to win a Boohoo giftcard; a free soft drink on the door; and confetti cannons.

Reload is advertising that the event will now take place at The Hangar, in Pearson Street, Wolverhampton, on December 20.

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