Tuning up for a safe V Festival

Tuesday, 18th August – 10.45am – Jamie Arrowsmith.


Ahead of thousands of music lovers heading to Weston Park, final medical preparations are being made in readiness for this week’s V Festival.

The popular annual festival is again expected to draw big crowds with tens of thousands attending each day, many of whom will be camping throughout the weekend.

Once more, West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) will be working in partnership with Venture Event Medical Management and St. John Ambulance to ensure first-class medical services are available in order to make it one of the safest festivals in the country.

Last year, approximately 870 patients were treated for a variety of injuries, 20 of whom required transporting to hospital.


In total there will be approximately 200 staff and volunteers working throughout the weekend. A command and control centre will be set up on site, staffed by call takers and dispatchers who will co-ordinate ambulances and medical staff who will be stationed within the park. Self-contained medical centres staffed by doctors, nurses and staff from St. John Ambulance will also be present on site and are fully equipped to deal with all types of injuries, helping festival goers to avoid any unnecessary trips to A&E and continue on with their fun at the festival.

The ambulance service will be taking its own advice and will be prepared for all weather conditions; alongside our ambulances, we will be deploying a number of 4×4 vehicles which will help staff gain access to people who may become injured in any difficult locations during the event.

Throughout the course of this week and over the weekend, WMAS will be running a safety campaign offering tips and advice on how to make sure visitors are fully prepared and stay safe throughout the festival.


Early indications suggest the weather will be incredibly mixed, visit http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/events/v-festival-weston-park for the very latest forecast. As a result of the expected changeable conditions, Assistant Chief Ambulance Officer Steve Wheaton, has offered the following advice to festival goers.

“We are urging people to follow a few simple tips over the weekend’s event to ensure they get to spend their time in the music tent rather than the medical centre.

“Over the years I have encountered huge variations in the weather throughout festival events. Savvy festival goers will bring waterproof clothing, such as a rain coat, their wellies and sensible footwear to help avoid any unnecessary slips and falls, as well as some sun cream and a hat should the sun decide to shine over the park.

“The festival is fun and good natured and overall has a history of being a very safe event. Every year we will see a handful of people over-doing it on the first night and sadly having to go home early, missing the entire festival. Therefore it is important that people are sensible with their intake of alcohol and I would advise people to drink plenty of water and soft drinks to avoid dehydration and please don’t forget to eat regularly.

“If you are on medication please remember to bring enough to last throughout the whole weekend and don’t forget to take it. It is helpful to keep friends informed of any medical conditions that you have or any medication you may be taking as they could help our medical teams should you become ill and aren’t in a position to tell us yourself.”

Jon Mannion, the event manager for St John Ambulance, said: “V Festival is one of the biggest first aid operations of the year for St John Ambulance in the West Midlands.

“We will be providing a team of healthcare professionals, ambulance crews, first aiders and support staff as part of the medical provision on site.

“Last year, the team gave medical attention to a very small percentage of the festival population and we look forward to providing a high quality and responsive service with our partners again this year.”

V-Festival 2011 Preparations - Happy 2010 Festival Goers


Notes to Editors:

If used, please credit the images to West Midlands Ambulance Service.

Leave a Reply