EASTNOR Castle has issued an apology concerning noise levels from last weekend's El Dorado music festival, following a string of complaints.

Drum beats were heard after 3pm in the morning for several nights in a row, from Ledbury to Bosbury, from Wellington Heath to Bromsberrow.

But other local residents say it is a once a year event and people should adopt a 'live and let live' attitude.

David Littlewood, general manager for Eastnor Castle said: "The El Dorado Festival held in Eastnor Deer Park last weekend enjoyed fantastic weather and was a great success for the organisers and all those attending.

"This is the third time the event has been held in the Deer Park at Eastnor Castle and previous events have gone without any problems. However, during and after this year’s event there were some complaints from residents about noise in Ledbury and the surrounding areas.

"We are very sorry for any problems or upset the noise may have caused."

He added: "Eastnor Castle have spoken directly with the complainants to understand their concerns and listen to their issues. Like other events in our Deer Park, El Dorado Festival is organised by a third party. While we do not have overall responsibly for the event, we work very closely with the organisers to ensure the event will run smoothly with as little impact as possible for everyone in the area. Eastnor Castle takes its responsibilities as an attraction and events venue very seriously and would not wish to cause a nuisance to local people.

"The event is licensed by Herefordshire Council and part of the licence conditions set specific noise limits for the event. The noise levels were monitored throughout the event at various locations and the noise was within the agreed levels. But the abnormal weather conditions last weekend meant the noise was carried by the wind towards Ledbury and the lack of cloud cover added to the problem, as cloud normally helps ‘absorb’ some of the sound."

Now measures will be considered to limit future noise nuisance.

Mr Littlewood said: "We will be discussing with the organisers and Herefordshire Council about how the impact can be minimised in the future."

One local resident who felt the noise was too much was former Ledbury GP, Nick Meyer, who said: "It is totally inconsiderate of the organisers of this event to force the many residents, who have no interest in this type of music, to listen to it for three consecutive nights until 3 or 4 am.

"We live over three miles from the venue and we had to keep our windows closed to reduce the noise so that we could get some sleep."

Local man Edd Hogan was also unhappy about the disruption.

He said: "The festival took place over the hottest weekend of the year. The noise travelled and could be heard every night across Ledbury.

"My children couldn’t sleep on Friday or Saturday night because of the pervasive noise coming over the hills. It was so hot, the windows had to be open, but the noise levels, especially after midnight, seem incessant."

Mr Hogan added: " These festivals don’t really add anything to the local economy as they are enclosed events. In other words, the argument that I foresee about a little nuisance noise being a small price to pay for the wider economic benefits is, in my view, flawed."

Wellington Heath resident Marc Lowe said: "Surely a 1am threshold on Saturday and 12pm on Sunday would be a much better idea? It was very thumpy bass and I found it very hard to get off to sleep."

But not every local resident was complaining.

Posting on the Voice of Ledbury Facebook site, where the issue was hotly debated, Tommy Cornock said, "Oldies just don’t want the young ones to have fun."

And Michelle Turner said: "Everyone was enjoying themselves; I can't see that's a bad thing,what's with all the misery in the world?"

Ann Beard said: "It's only for a few days a year; stop whingeing, get a life, and if needs be, get some ear plugs."