RSL NSW said the Botanic Gardens of Sydney made the right call to block a concert organiser from holding a music concert at Sydney’s Domain on ANZAC Day.
RSL NSW president and former commando Mick Bainbridge described holding a heavy metal music festival on ANZAC Day as “inappropriate”.
“It is a day for respect and quiet contemplation,” he said in a statement.
The Pandemonium concert – which was being headlined by Alice Cooper, Placebo, Blondie and Deep Purple – was scheduled to take place nearby the Anzac Day march on April 25.
In an interview with 9News, NSW Premier Chris Minns declared the concert would “definitely” not be going be going ahead on ANZAC Day, even if it were to be relocated elsewhere in Sydney.
“If we had our time again, we would be working a lot closer with the RSL about commemorating ANZAC Day across metropolitan Sydney,” he said. “In the first instance, I’ve got to protect the CBD and ensure the RSL has the opportunity to have that march and the community can come together.”
Ben Fordham on 2GB revealed the state government was being lobbied by RSL NSW to intervene.
Bainbridge added the music festival promoter offered to direct a portion of ticket sales to veteran charities to gain the community’s advocacy for the concert, but he noted that “ANZAC Day is not for sale”.
“If the organiser sincerely wants to support veterans’ wellbeing, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss how they can donate to organisations including RSL NSW and RSL LifeCare Veteran Services to do so – without compromising a day of honour and respect,” he continued.