Pub in the Park: your views wanted

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News release: 17 September 2019

Businesses, residents and community groups are asked for their views on the first Pub in the Park event in St Albans.

Pub in Park
More than 18,000 people attended the three-day food, drink and live music show at Verulamium Park with an estimated 40% coming from outside the City.

Celebrity chef Tom Kerridge was the host and among the other star attractions were fellow TV cooks James Martin and Atul Kochhar. Music acts included Razorlight, Tom Odell, Will Young and Scouting for Girls.

St Albans City and District Council gave permission to the organisers to hold the event at the park.

The City was one of eight locations chosen for this year’s tour with Bath, Warwick and Leeds among the others.

There were 87 food and drink exhibitors and ten pop-up restaurants while the crowds ate over 30,000 dishes and ran up a bigger drinks bill than any of the other venues.

Now the Council wants to hear from residents and organisations whether they felt Pub in the Park was a success and would be happy for it to return next year.

It is believed the organisers will apply to hold the event at Verulamium Park again in 2020.

Councillor Anthony Rowlands has responsibility for overseeing the Council’s parks and green spaces as Portfolio Holder for Community, Leisure and Sport.

He said: “This was one of the biggest and most prestigious events to be held in the District in recent years.

“It provided first-class entertainment and attracted many thousands of people to our City for the weekend. A number of local businesses also took the opportunity to showcase their produce.

“Verulamium Park offered the organisers a fabulous, historic setting and they made arrangements to deal with issues like car parking provision and noise.

“As they may well want to return, we would like feedback from residents and organisations about whether they feel that would be a good idea. All the people I’ve spoken to say it is, but I would like that confirmed.”

Councillor Mandy McNeil, Portfolio Holder for Business, Culture and Tourism who has responsibility for overseeing events, said: “I worked at Pub in the Park over the weekend manning our St Albans Food and Drink Festival booth, promoting upcoming events in St Albans such as Time Turn and the Food and Drink Festival to visitors.  

“This fantastic event showcased St Albans to residents and also to visitors and I spoke to many people from Hatfield, Hertford, Hemel Hempstead, Abbots Langley, Milton Keynes, London and other places. They were keen to learn of the exciting events St Albans has to offer with the feedback being that they will come back to Enjoy St Albans.     

“I would like to give a special thanks to the Council’s events team for their work behind the scenes to help this happen.  Also thank you to the many local independent businesses and residents who came together with Save St Albans Pubs earlier this year to support the event.

“It gave our local economy a tremendous boost by attracting so many people to the City Centre, spending money in our pubs, restaurants and shops as well as attending Pub in the Park where our local businesses such as Thompson, Dylans and several of our own l St Albans Market traders, including Yvette’s Chocolate, were showcased

“We want to hear from residents and businesses about what they thought of the event and whether they agree with my own impression that it was a raging success.”

Anyone who wants to give their views should email:

Pub in the Park
Pub in the Park
Picture: Host Tom Kerridge at the event (top); scenes from the event (bottom two).

Councillor contact: Cllr Anthony Rowlands, Portfolio Holder for Community, Leisure and Sport:;  07761 232064. 

Mandy McNeil, Portfolio Holder for Business, Culture and Tourism for St Albans City and District Council;; 07854-198999.

Media contact: John McJannet, Principal Communications Officer, St Albans City and District Council. Tel: 01727 819533