I have no idea whether it is related but I thought (just for devilment) that I would share these snatches of mobile phone conversation overheard on a train from Victoria yesterday...
"... we won't have the producer full time until next week"
"... still casting for judges as well as talent..."
"... researcher can't get contact numbers for any of the people I thought were good"
"... Andrew Lloyd Webber"
I personally can't see Fame Academy causing any massive public onslaught on the area, they haven't had any huge crowds in the previous series, so the David Blaine thing most surely will not be repeated. I wonder if they are planning to use the school as the academy as well, as the contestants also live on the premises during the show. But still I would only expect a few teenage girls hanging around a see a glimpse of whoever might be their favourite in it... otherwise there will be little to see on the outside, so I can't see people blocking the traffic for this.
I agree with Nelson that SLP almost certainly mixed up X-Factor with Fame Academy.
But the reason that Fame Academy needs a new home is that further series at its old home are not allowed because the council refused permission because local residents complained about the noise and disruption.
Maybe Alan will know more about it after his meeting with Endemol (I am glad that they were wise enough to consult locals at least).
Have just come back from a meeting with Endemol at Fair Community Housing services. It's going to be more or less as Nelson predicted. Nothing for crowds to see - it will all take place inside the school. The largest crowd they had at Highgate was 6! As Neil says there were some complaints at the last venue but I was told they were mostly to do with transport facilities for the audience. Highgate Village is quite cut off as regards Public transport compared to Tower Bidge.
The contestants will be living in the school.
The audience each night will consist of approximately 100 friends and families of those taking part and an additional 300 with pre allocated tickets. There will be no entrance on the night. However the producers are anxious to have local people amonst the audience and when I get details of how to apply for tickets I will post them here.
There is a risk of some noise emanating from the building but I have been assured that it will be very closely monitored to make sure it is not excessive.
At present the producers have not agreed their schedule with the BBC so I cannot give you any information on dates or timings, except that it will be in prime time TV hours.
So all in all I don't think we have anything to worry about. I hope I'm not wrong!
On the positive side apparently they have raised some £750,000 for Red Nose Day so far.
A word of warning. 400 people leaving that building at the end of the evening, together with several hundred Endemol production staff will NOT be insignificant. You only need to ask residents at Elstree why they have saught injunctions against the producers for late night mid-week evictions because of the noise.
Whilst I'm delighted that they will be supporting the local community with their wallets - this is going to cause disruption. It is a 24 hour operation - if you live nearby you may need to have the Environmental Health number close to hand...