Noise complaints hit all-time low at Hyde Park’s BST Festival

Noise complaints hit a record low at this year’s Barclaycard’s British Summer Time Festival thanks to Capital Sound’s use of a Martin Audio MLA PA system and extended Optocore fibre network at the 10-day event in Hyde Park, according to Commercial Integrator Europe.

Capital Sound’s decision to utilise Martin Audio’s MLA system came after successful uses at previous festivals, with complaints about noise dramatically decreased since 2013 when it was first used at the festival.

In 2012 both the audience and the media criticised Blur’s headline gig due to ‘poor sound quality’ due to restrictions placed on the festival, forcing the organisers to turn the sound down to ensure neighbours to Hyde Park couldn’t hear it.

Blur returned to the festival this year with Martin Audio hoping that it would be the perfect showcase for the MLA – with it designed to ensure no sound leaks to Hyde Park neighbours, while enveloping all those in the audience in the music.

Other headliners for this year’s festival included The Strokes, The Who (pictured), Kylie Minogue and Taylor Swift.

According to Vanguardia principal consultant Olly Creedy, complaints on site had been ‘significantly reduced’ reaching their lowest levels since the festival began.

“The sound has been consistently over 100dB for the headline acts and for The Who headline show there was 30dB of attenuation in view of the wind, which we’ve never seen before at Hyde Park,” he said. “This would enable sound levels of up to 105dB to be achieved at the desk while still restricting to 75dB offsite limits.”

Promoter Jim King, senior vice president, live events at AEG, also added his thoughts on the MLA system: “We are pleased that even in challenging wind conditions we were still able to operate at levels unimaginable three years ago.

“To achieve this and reduce local resident complaints for the third year running is a huge success for the event. The work undertaken by Capital and Martin Audio has again strengthened Hyde Park’s position as the best outdoor venue in the world.”

“After three years, we have now evolved a successful formula to optimise the audience experience at Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park,” remarked Paul Timmins of Capital Sound. “Thanks to the unique functionality of MLA, historic problems with noise escape are now a thing of the past and what FOH engineers can focus upon and enjoy is their mix in perfect clarity while their artists fully entertain every one of the 65,000 crowd.”

Read AMI’s full report on the festival here.