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Serious Latitude Adjustment
Serious Stages enhanced the good vibes and great atmosphere at the 2008 Latitude festival by supplying three staging structures - one floating - and a pontoon walking bridge across the large lake to link the two main areas of the site. The Festival Republic event is set in the stunning grounds of Henham Park, Southwold, Suffolk, and is one of the UK's most sought-after boutique festivals. The Serious team of 16 was led by crew chief Gavin Harper.
The Obelisk Stage, Latitude's main stage, was one of the new Serious 22 metre, four-bay Supernova structures, which was covered in white skins for the first time, and decorated around the front with Latitude's signature funky daisies!
This version of the Supernova was constructed with round trussing for a generally gentler and more spherical appearance. The stage space was 22 metres wide and 14.4 deep, with 11 metres of headroom and with a backshed at the rear for rolling risers, backline storage and to help facilitate quick changeovers. To the sides were two 4.7 metre wide by 7.2 metre deep cowsheds, utilised for monitor and dimmer areas. Serious also supplied a pair of 12 metre high goalposts for the PA wings and a three-tier front-of-house tower, 4.8 metres wide and 9 high. Headliners over the three days included Sigor Ros, Elbow, Franz Ferdinand and Interpol.
The gently undulating Latitude site features a large lake separating the parklands and performance arenas on one side from the more wooded regions on the other, with the camping areas located behind the woods.
Serious was asked to design and build a walking bridge allowing the 25,000 festival population to traverse the lake and move easily around the site. It had to be capable of carrying a dynamic load of up to 120 tonnes of people. The structural engineering was undertaken by Serious's Dragan Kuzmanov. The bridge took five days to build explains Harper. It was 52 metres long, 9.6 wide and was built from Kwikform Scaffolding, mounted securely on 28 submerged solid steel pontoons. Serious is currently looking into developing elements of its Space Roof trussing into 44 - 68 metre span walking bridges.
Serious also built the On The Lake/Saddlers Wells Stage, a 9.6 by 7.2 metre performance area over the water just the other side of the Bridge on which a series of dance and music performances were staged. This was also made from Kwikform scaffolding, with its foundations secured below the waterline and constructed with the help of a scuba diver who was recruited by Serious for the build period.
The Pims Platform was a much smaller floating pontoon area on a secluded section of the lake, where Pims Tent competition winners could be punted out to enjoy a glass of champagne.
This popular ‘In The Woods' area really gets moving and grooving after dark with a DJ line up for those who want to dance the night away. Situated in a tiny woodland grove with a magical feel, Serious built one of their 7.2 by 4.8 metre FOH style stages, proving the versatility of this type of construction, which was an ideal size and shape for the application and uneven ground.
Latitude was one of many events for Serious that same weekend, which also included providing the main stage at Lovebox in London's Victoria Park, and an 18 metre Orbit stage/roof for the Larmer Tree Festival in Dorset.
11th August 2008
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