Bradford's biggest musical festival has been cancelled this year because of escalating costs.

The Music at Myrtle and Party in the Park weekend in Bingley has also suffered shrinking audiences and the declining support of the music industry, according to organisers Bradford Council and commercial radio station Pulse.

The free admission Music at Myrtle event, held on a Saturday night, had been going for 16 years and The Pulse's Party in the Park started in 1999 on the following Sunday.

Party in the Park, held at Myrtle Park at the beginning of September, had previously attracted A-list acts such as Steps, Atomic Kitten, Gareth Gates, Blue, McFly and Charlotte Church.

Long time favourites like Hot Chocolate, Boney M, Suzi Quatro and Showaddywaddy had played at Music at Myrtle. But the Council said attendance figures for Music at Myrtle had dropped, falling from 18,000 in 2001 to 11,000 last year when heavy rain kept the crowds down despite the headline act being Ocean Colour Scene.

Councillor Anne Hawkesworth, the Council's executive member for environment and culture, admitted it was very disappointing when a successful event came to an end.

She said: "Party in the Park can't remain in its current form but other options are being looked into.

"There are the financial implications of putting on a two day event, the only reason it was feasible to put it on in the past was because of the partnership with Pulse."

"We are not saying that is it, but we are saying that's the situation at the moment."

A Pulse spokesman confirmed that the decline in support from the music industry for this type of event had made it more difficult for all radio stations across the UK, many of whom have already cancelled similar festivals.

Tony Wilkinson, Pulse station director, said the music industry had informed radio stations that it was finding it difficult to support similar events, because it did not now have as many artists out on promotional tours to provide a top class running order.

Mr Wilkinson said: "Pulse will continue to carry on with its out and about' activity events for 2007 but there will be nothing on the scale of Party in the Park.

"What we will be involved in is more smaller scale events, still involving A-list celebrities, but not necessarily from the music industry, but from television or the movies."

The Council's Labour group leader Councillor Ian Greenwood said the loss of the event was due to the way the ruling Conservative group was running the authority.

He said: "This is a potential cut in the budget that we have been aware of.

"Frankly I think it is a disgrace. We think that this is an important event that brings people together from all members of the community."

"We wouldn't be cutting it and we will be opposing it. This is another example of the hand to mouth, incompetent short-sighted way in which the ruling party are dealing with Bradford Council."

Last year the Council branded its series of summer events, including Bradford Festival which takes place in June, as the Big Summer during a major publicity campaign.

Last night Coun Hawksworth said this year's Bradford Festival programme had not yet been finalised although the Mela and the Lord Mayor's Parade, which is in its centenary year, would still go ahead.

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