“Christmas at Kenwood”, the light show, has now drawn to a close for its second year, and English Heritage has been seeking feedback in advance of a public consultation meeting on 22 March at 6.30pm in the Old Kitchen, Kenwood. Timescales for the consultation itself were short so members of Council of the Highgate Society provided comments and a representative will attend the meeting.
We think that £19.50 per ticket was excessive for a light show, and most of our members were put off going. It did not seem to be value for money for a family during a period of inclement weather and during a cost of living crisis. Did it even make a significant profit?
We are concerned about damage to the grounds caused by the event, especially during wet weather and muddy conditions. There seemed to be large numbers of trucks and generators parked on land by the entrance from Hampstead Lane. Just as for the summer concerts, there was a huge amount of land covered with the support vehicles and machines, which completely eliminated the designated viewpoint of all the London landmarks. This access point and paraphernalia might better have been put on the hard standing in front of the house, where damage to the surface would have been limited.
Damage to the grounds is a serious concern, especially as English Heritage is now licensed to run unlimited events for up to 9,999 people. Kenwood House and grounds were given to the nation and use of the house and grounds are governed by the Inveagh Bequest. We think that if events become too frequent, they would constitute a breach of the Iveagh Bequest stipulation that the public should have free access to Kenwood House and its grounds.
If you have further comments that you’d like us to raise at the meeting on 22nd March, please let us know through the Contact Us page on our website or write to firstname.lastname@example.org
31 January 2023