21 Nov, 2014

Royal Croquet Club Lease To Be Granted

City of Adelaide has announced that the Royal Croquet Club will be granted a lease to operate in Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga during the 2015 Adelaide Fringe.

Council administration and the event organisers have been negotiating various aspects of the lease over the last four months to reflect feedback received from the first year of programming in Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga.

These negotiations have also been reflective of feedback received from event organisers, Councillors, the community and peak bodies such as AHA, the Restaurant and Catering Association, the Central Market, local businesses and traders groups.

City of Adelaide Lord Mayor Martin Haese said he believed a balance had been struck between the growth of the Fringe, activation of a key part of the city that traditionally is not used on this scale, and the concerns of many of those fixed businesses within the area that are the lifeblood of this city.

“Since coming into Council I’ve been able to witness firsthand the adjustments made to plans by the organisers of the Royal Croquet Club in direct response to feedback from stakeholders,” Martin said.

“People know I voiced concerns in the lead up to becoming Lord Mayor, but after seeing the efforts to negotiate by everyone involved I can clearly see the change to the programming for the space.

“I think where we’ve landed delivers an exciting and diverse offering during the 2015 Adelaide Fringe, but is still very mindful of delivering flow on benefits for local surrounding businesses.

“The Royal Croquet Club in Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga has the potential to draw people and new audiences into and throughout the heart of city, from the east to the west and the north to the south, bringing economic benefits to each district.

“Next year’s event is first and foremost a Fringe performance venue; with reduced focus on the sale of alcohol.

The 2015 Royal Croquet Club will have over 100 artists in 36 Fringe registered/ticketed events with over 174,220 tickets available for sale. There will be six Fringe venues, up from three in 2014, with 769 individual performance sessions, an increase from 2014’s 189 sessions.

Council Administration and the event organisers have negotiated open access to the site, minimal road closures, reduced opening hours to what was proposed, management of late night music and associated noise, and programming in line with the Council endorsed Victoria Square Hirer’s guidelines.

Council’s City Culture and Community Services General Manager Sandy Verschoor said that the outcome takes into account the various concerns while still enabling the Royal Croquet Club to operate as a Fringe venue.

“We have negotiated the trading hours to reduce them both during the week and on the weekend, which gives people an opportunity to enjoy what’s on offer in the city before and after a show.

“Reconciliation Plaza will only be closed to traffic from 7pm Friday night to 7am Saturday morning, then from 2pm Saturday afternoon to 7am Monday morning so as to minimise disruption to commuters and the public transport system.”

“The increased duration from 19 days in 2014 to 28 days in 2015 aligns with the running time of the Fringe, and the increased footprint has allowed for more performance areas which has attracted a raft of new national and international performers to the Adelaide Fringe, without increasing capacity.

The Square will be open to the public most of the time to keep it integrated with the surrounding precinct and so people can wander in and out.

The food will be from some of SA’s most interesting restaurateurs and eateries who will set up their own temporary themed outlets. The venue will employ over 300 staff and contractors. The Liquor Licence is yet to be granted.

“The redeveloped Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga has been open for less than a year and we are still trialling activation and programming within the space. We have taken all feedback into consideration and we will closely monitor the success and impacts of the 2015 Royal Croquet Club,” Sandy said.

For more information

Paula Stevens