The St Albans Food & Drink festival, now in its 14th year, features an exciting programme of events across September including Tom Kerridge’s Pub in the Park, Stars at the Bars and the Oaklands Farm to Fork.
St Albans, in Hertfordshire, has a remarkable history and reputation for food and drink and the month-long event is hugely popular with locals and visitors looking for an incredible foodie experience.
There will also be a 24-hour photography challenge, pub quizzes and iconic film nights, livestock events, street food nights, Bollywood dancing, live radio events and pop-ups a plenty – it truly is a jam-packed festival with something for everyone.
Manager of St Albans Bid, Denise Parsons, said…
“We are delighted to sponsor the festival which celebrates our food and drink heroes who have gone above and beyond during lockdown. There is something for everyone to enjoy, including live music which is hugely welcomed and adds to the vibrancy of our outdoor events.”
Tom Kerridge’s Pub in the Park event on 10th-12th September in Verulamium Park brings together special chefs, artisan products and top musicians for one big party- with live music from big names such as All Saints, Basement Jaxx, Gabrielle and the Lightening Seeds.
The awards for the district’s best food and drink businesses are one of the festival highlights but due to the pandemic have been scaled down to one prestigious award this year. Nominations for the Kate D’Arcy Award, recognising an individual who has given exceptional customer service to their community during the pandemic, are open until Monday 23rd August and the nominees will be invited to a presentation event on Monday 20th September at St Michael’s Manor Hotel.
The festival culminates with the incredible FEASTIVAL street event on Sunday 26th September. The central streets in the town centre will be peppered with over 100 food and drink stalls, street entertainment, bars with live music, art and crafts activities, cookery demonstrations, face painting and fun for all ages.
Just 20 miles and 20 minutes by train from London St Pancras International and excellent road connections, St Albans is easily accessible, making it the perfect day or staycation destination.
Where to stay?
Accommodation in the city centre ranges from small and intimate bed and breakfasts to large hotels including the stunning country style Manor hotel, St Michaels Manor, the luxurious Sopwell House and the Victorian Grade II listed Torrington Hall.
Find out more details about the St Albans Food & Drink Festival and where to stay at EnjoyStAlbans.com
Foodie Related Notes:
- An historic inn-keeping city, St Albans has the most pubs per square mile in the country and is home to England’s Oldest pub, Ye Olde Fighting Cocks, as confirmed by The Guinness Book of Records.
- Did you know the hot cross bun originated in St Albans. The ‘Alban Bun’ was created by Brother Thomas Rocliffe, a 14th Century Monk at St Albans Abbey, who developed the recipe and would feed the poor on Good Friday.
- The city is famous for its café and pub culture with a fantastic range of award-winning eating and drinking establishments.
About St Albans:
- St Albans is one of the best-kept secrets in UK tourism. A historic gem of an English Cathedral City just 20 miles and 20 minutes by train from London is easily accessible by road with links to the M25, M1 and A1(M).
- The city’s colourful history and heritage can be seen in the Roman remains and the beautiful medieval architecture and picturesque buildings that look spectacular all year round.
- A fabulous shopping destination, St Albans is home to an array of innovative independent retailers and well-known chains.
- There are lots of green, open spaces and parks, making St Albans a family-friendly destination.
Win a ‘Freebie Fridays’ meal by tagging your favourite restaurant
By simply tagging your favourite restaurant and who you would like to dine with, you could win a ‘Freebie Fridays‘ free meal for two courtesy of TrendLife Magazine. Launching in January 2022, Freebie Fridays will give foodies across The Three Counties the chance to take a friend or loved one to a restaurant of their choice
Freebie Fridays Entry tasks
- Tag your chosen restaurant/eatery.
- Tag your chosen guest and follow us.
- Sit back and wait for the weekly draw.
You can tag as many friends and resturants in each draw. Duplicates will only be counted once. You and your nominated guest BOTH need to follow us to be entered into the prize draw. You can enter on both Instagram or Facebook.
Freebie Fridays Terms and Conditions
- The promoter of the Freebie Fridays prize draw is TrendLife Magazine. The promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.
- The Freebie Fridays prize draw is open to UK residents aged 18 or over.
- Winners must select/tag a restaurant within the Three Counties of Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire. The winner will be chosen at random and a check will be performed to ensure the winner’s account is. valid. You cannot transfer the prize to a third party.
- To enter the prize draw you should follow the instructions on the Facebook post or Instagram post announcing the competition.
- Late, invalid or incomplete entries will not be considered, and we accept no responsibility for lost entries.
- The Freebie Fridays prize for one winner will be defined within the Facebook and Instagram post.
- The Freebie Fridays prize is non-transferable and there are no cash alternatives. Freebie Fridays meal value will be limited to £50 per person. Alcoholic drinks are not included.
- The winner will be chosen at random from all qualifying entries. The result is final and no discussion will be entered into concerning the outcome.
- The Freebie Fridays prize draw closes on the date defined in the social media post. Entries received after this date will not be considered.
- The winner’s contact details may be passed on to a third party for prize fulfilment purposes.
- The personal information and contact details you supply will be used only for the purposes of administering the competition, including contacting winners. Winners will be asked to review their meal and chosen restaurant.
- We reserve the right to amend these terms and conditions or to cancel, alter or amend the draw or the Freebie Fridays prize due to any circumstances that arise beyond our control.
- The Freebie Fridays prize draw is subject to the laws of England and Wales.
The Swan and The Black Horse both receive award for sustainability
Two local pubs, The Swan in Salford and The Black Horse in Woburn have been officially recognised for their actions to reduce their impact on climate change and help people to make more sustainable choices when eating out by being awarded a Three Star Food Made Good rating by the Sustainable Restaurant Association.
The pubs and their owners Peach Pubs were given the accolade for the steps they have taken to be better businesses and make a difference to people and the planet. To achieve it, they worked with the Sustainable Restaurant Association to complete a detailed assessment of the sustainability of the businesses looking at 10 key areas. These ranged from celebrating local and seasonal and sourcing fish responsibly to treating its people fairly and eliminating food waste.
When combined to provide an overall performance across three key pillars – Sourcing, Society and Environment – Peach and the pubs were given a total Food Made Good Rating of 73%, earning them a Three Star status.
This means that the pubs have been able to show that they are good restaurants with a score of 72% on Sourcing, 74% on Society and 72% on Environment, adding up to a consistently good performance on all three key pillars.
The pubs’ focus on putting local and seasonal produce on their menus was highlighted by a score of 80%, while the way they look after the people who cook in their kitchens and run their bars and restaurant achieved 76%. Their efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle were recognised with a 76% score and the chefs’ hard work in eliminating food waste was rewarded with 72%.
Finally, everything the pubs do to support the community, especially during lockdown when they kept their teams busy doing voluntary work, cooking takeaways for local residents as well as preparing and delivering free meals to frontline NHS workers, was singled out with an impressive 84%.
“It’s fantastic news to be given a Three Star Food Made Good rating by the Sustainable Restaurant Association, and doubly significant after what has been a year like no other for the hospitality industry,” says Frazer Sutherland, Peach Partner who looks after the pubs.
“We are hugely proud that what we have been doing to be better businesses and put the planet first have been recognised in this way. It is tremendous encouragement from the Sustainable Restaurant Association and we shall be working with them over the year ahead to be even better and improve our scores in areas we need to. In the meantime, we shall be celebrating this excellent news with our team and with our guests” he says.
Juliane Caillouette-Noble, Managing Director of the SRA, said, “By being the first pub business to complete the Food Made Good sustainability rating after the pandemic and additionally achieving Three Stars, Peach truly is demonstrating to its customers, staff and industry colleagues that it is 100% committed to serving up a better food future.”
The Swan Salford Address
2 Wavendon Road
Tel: 01908 281008.
The Black Horse Address
The Black Horse,
1 Bedford Street
Tel: 01525 290210
Five shopping & overnight breaks in Hertfordshire before Christmas
Who says you can’t tackle all your Christmas shopping in one go, with a weekend escape thrown in for good measure too? At the risk of panicking you just a little, the countdown to Christmas is well and truly on! Fear not though, as we’ve done the hard work for you and pulled together our top five shop and stay combinations across Hertfordshire that will ensure you’re feeling ready (and most importantly, relaxed) by the time December 25th rolls around…
Christmas shopping at Atria Watford & The Grove Hotel
Believe us when we say that you really need to stay the night to make the most of ticking off that Christmas shopping list at the Atria Watford shopping centre. With an impressive line-up of retail brands and leisure choices you’ll find all you need to put a smile on the face of loved ones this Christmas under one roof. What’s more, once you’ve finished treating everyone else, pamper yourself with a night of luxury at The Grove Hotel. Set in 300 acres of countryside, and only 10-minutes’ drive from Atria Watford, this is just the pre-Christmas treat you deserve! Winter in Watford…
Christmas shopping in St Albans’ boutique stores & Aubrey Park Hotel
After a long day Christmas Shopping in the wonderful boutique stores around St Albans, wouldn’t it be nice not to have to rush straight home, and indulge a little instead? If you are laden with shopping bags, why not take a short drive and spend the night in one of Aubrey Park Hotel’s cosy rooms? Treat yourself to an early Christmas present by upgrading to their plush suites for a dreamy winter staycation in the festive period. Feeling seasonal St Albans!
Enjoy St Albans: https://www.enjoystalbans.com/things-to-do/
Aubrey Park Hotel: https://aubreypark.co.uk/
Christmas in The Galleria Shopping Centre & Hanbury Manor Hotel
After a busy day stocking up on seasonal treats at The Galleria Shopping Centre in Welwyn, head North where you’ll find Hanbury Manor Marriott Hotel & Country Club dressed in its festive finery, ready to welcome you in for a winter escape! Indulge in a fireside afternoon tea, escape to the spa for a few hours, or simply wrap up warm and head out to enjoy one of the many walking routes on site. Hello Hanbury…
The Galleria Shopping Centre: https://thegalleria.co.uk/
Hanbury Manor Hotel: https://bit.ly/3kzcTRR
Christmas in Westgate Shopping Centre & Cromwell Hotel
Enjoy a full festive programme at Westgate Shopping Centre this season, including late night shopping events, and even the chance to meet Santa in his Grotto! And with so much going on to wear out little ones, you needn’t head far for a place to rest your head for the night. Just five-minutes away, relax in one of the beautifully decorated rooms at Hotel Cromwell. This attractive hotel in the heart of Old Town Stevenage boasts stylish decor that perfectly complements the character still in evidence from its former times. Check-in to Cromwell…
Westgate Shopping Centre: https://www.westgateshopping.co.uk/
Hotel Cromwell, Stevenage: https://cromwellstevenage.co.uk/
Christmas on Tring High Street & Pendley Manor Hotel
Nestled just a stone’s throw from the picturesque market town of Tring, you’re guaranteed a warm welcome when you check into charming Pendley Manor hotel this winter. Before settling in for a cosy night’s stay, why not make a pit-stop and enjoy a meander through Tring’s high street with its wealth of independently run shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants? The perfect opportunity to support the town’s local businesses and pick up some unique, handcrafted gifts for loved ones!
Tring Together: https://www.tringtogether.org.uk/visit-tring
Pendley Manor: https://www.pendley-manor.co.uk/