"We want festival-goers to enjoy themselves safely and without fear of becoming a victim of crime," say Island police, as the plan for this weekend's Isle of Wight festival is revealed.

Around 50,000 are expected at Seaclose Park, from Thursday, September 16 until Sunday, 19.

Hampshire Constabulary says it is working with organisers and others to keep crime as low possible. 

Hampshire Constabulary’s Isle of Wight Festival police commander, Chief Superintendent Dave Powell, said: "The Isle of Wight Festival has maintained a reputation for having low levels of crime and providing a family-friendly atmosphere which continues to attract visitors every summer. 

"Despite the event being cancelled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are expecting to see over 50,000 people to attend throughout the duration of the Festival, with approximately 30,000 camping. 

"While incidents of low-level crime occurred at the last Isle of Wight Festival back in 2019, this represented a reduction in reported crime from previous years. This is a positive movement and one which is in-keeping with the festival’s reputation for being relaxed and family-friendly.  

"Working with the event organisers, we are committed to protecting those attending and the wider population on the Island."

Hampshire Constabulary’s Crime Prevention Advisors said: "Rest assured that before the festival has even begun, work is well underway between Hampshire Constabulary and its partners to develop a plan to ensure the event runs safely and smoothly.

"We would encourage festival-goers to take note of the advice on our social media channels which will be promoted during the event. We hope that our simple top tips will help those in attendance keep safe and enjoy the festival.

"There is also a wealth of information in keeping you, friends/family and your personal belongings safe while attending the festival on the official Isle of Wight Festival website as well as further information on the Festival Safe website.

"These safety messages help to raise awareness and supports the police in maintaining a low level of crime throughout the event, please do have a read before you arrive and during your time at the site." 

Tent safety

2019’s Isle of Wight festival saw a 59 per cent  drop in the number of overall thefts reported, compared to 2018.

The advice is to leaving valuables at home and only bring what you can afford to lose. 

Keeping them in your sleeping bag while you sleep.

Register serial and model numbers for electrical items and mark them so police can identify owners.

Hampshire Constabulary’s Roads Policing Unit (RPU) Inspector Andrew Tester said: "Teamwork involving all agencies is a crucial part of ensuring the safety of island residents and visitors on the roads during festival season, and we will be supporting our partners’ traffic management plan.

"It is one of the busiest weeks of the year for the island – and this could be exacerbated by the fact that this is likely to be one of the first festivals that individuals have been able to enjoy since the pandemic - so some delays across the island will be inevitable. I would remind all road users to allow more time for their journeys during the week of the festival.

"Our officers will be taking a robust approach to dealing with any motorists who we believe are putting lives at risk by drink or drug-driving throughout their attendance at the festival."