By Vincent Malboeuf
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They are more than 700 PMR during this double edition of the Hellfest in Clisson (and as many accompanying persons) and represent 1% of metalheads. There have never been so many of them (there were 685 in 2019).
“The efforts to welcome them are considerable”
And never have people with reduced mobility been so well received and supported at Hellfest as this year.
They are growing because they know they are welcomed. Efforts are considerable at Hellfest in terms of accessibility and movement for people with reduced mobility.
La Nantaise is responsible for the PMR system created in 2009 by Antoine Tilly. She joined the volunteer team a year later at Hellfest. “I remember that in 2010, there were only 150 PMRs and only had one platform which was filled to the brim”.
Five PMR platforms on site
Since 2017, there are five of them, in front of all the stages. The biggest is located closest to main stage, below the VIP bar, which can accommodate 150 people with reduced mobility. The others are in front of the Warzone, the Altar, the Temple and the Valley.
It is now much easier to move around and go from one stage to another, thanks to the paved walkways on the Hellfest site. People with reduced mobility can also sleep in the huge festival campsite: 150 places are reserved for them at the entrance.
The device improves with each edition
At each edition, the device improves, by small touches. The number of volunteers, caring for people with reduced mobility, has doubled in three years. “We are 78 this year. We welcome them all here, at HQ, in the new Arkelino room (next to the Hellfest site, editor’s note), where we have 197 parking spaces”. Most of these volunteers come from the artist collective Noise Impuslion, whose president is none other than Cindy Pajot.
What is there to improve? I would say between Hell City Square and the campsite: it would be necessary to be able to create a path so that people with reduced mobility in wheelchairs do not get chips in the wheels. It is €60,000 of investment for our collective, so we are calling on new partners to come and join us in order to be able to finance this operation.
A collective that escalates issues to the organizers of the festival. “Hellfest has a listening ear and empathy for us. Yoann Le Névé (co-founder of Hellfest, editor’s note) trusts us”.
During the first weekend marked by the heat wavethe volunteers had planned everything: umbrellas to protect people with reduced mobility from the scorching sun, basins of water to relieve their feet and something to water them regularly. Three discomforts were recorded.
For the rest, the party is complete. People in wheelchairs were still carried by the crowd. In 2019, we all remember Morgane who had chained the slams. “She had done 90 over the weekend,” recalls Cindy Pajot.
There is also Pierre, a faithful quadriplegic. He was a festival-goer before his road accident, he still is today.
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