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Thousands told to leave Daresbury site a day early
4:16pm Sunday 26th August 2012 in News
CREAMFIELDS has been cancelled after torrential rain on Saturday night turned the festival site into a quagmire.
At around 1pm today the cancellation of the festival was confirmed due to health and safety concerns.
A statement on the Creamfields website said: "It is with regret that today’s event at Creamfields has been cancelled due to significant rainfall overnight and on site flooding.
"Every effort has been made to continue with the event and following an evaluation of the site the decision has been made by the promoters, Cheshire Police and multi agencies on site to close today’s final day in the interest of Health and Safety.
"The heavy downpour overnight has created issues across the site leaving many areas unusable. It is our primary concern at this time that assistance is given to those on site and ensure those campers exit safely.
"Please go to our Facebook Page for updates and further information."
Cheshire Police have set up extra exits and are assisting thousands of people who will now leave Daresbury a day early.
A statement on its website said: "Due to inclement weather over the last 24 hours, significant and heavy flooding is affecting the Creamfields arena near Warrington.
"There is localised flooding on site and on the roads around the A56 Chester Road at Daresbury.
"No serious casualties have been reported and Cheshire Police and partner agencies are supporting event organisers in ensuring the safety and welfare of festival goers during this time.
"Police are patrolling the arena and campsite areas to help direct festival goers to useable exits and drier ground.
"Festival goers should begin making suitable arrangements to leave the site. Additional public transport is being made available.
"Further updates will be made available throughout the day in respect of suitable exit routes for those leaving the site and also for those travelling to the site to collect friends or family.
Police are advising anyone travelling to the site to use the not entrance, off the A56.
They said extra free shuttle buses were being made available from the site to railway stations in Warrington, Runcorn, Manchester and Liverpool.
Revellers woke in camp sites on Sunday morning with rumours rife that headline acts had cancelled after advice from organisers.
Then it was announced 10,000 people with Sunday day tickets had been told not to attend.
Police onsite then said there would be no live music, although many visitors remained optimistic, drinking outside of tents with spirits still high.
But the dreaded announcement came and a scramble started for the exits.
People battled with belongings through rivers of mud, before desperately pushing cars stranded in ruined car parks.
Others who have been drinking throughout the day and are unable to drive will be forced to stay for another night with no entertainment.
Festival goer and Shrewsbury resident Chris Smith, aged 27, said: "We were in hospitality camping but we managed to stay dry because we were camped on a hill.
"The low areas were pretty horrendous and a lot of people's tents had flooded.
"Everyone seemed confident that the festival would carry on, because it seemed manageable.
"But some tents were underwater and the rain was really heavy last night - it absolutely hammered it down.
"Luckily my drive home isn't too far but a lot of people will have a long way to go on short notice."
Reporter Matthew Hobbs was at the festival.
He said: "Many people did not want to believe the rumours were true and carried on drinking.
"But a steady stream of people began to leave from around 11am to beat the anticipated rush.
"Large areas of some of the campsites were badly flooded while other parts seemed ok.
"Some went into the main site at lunchtime as music came on, but they have since been asked to leave.
"Tents and belongings were left in the mud as crowds made for the exits."
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