The third Picnic Penarth is under way this weekend

Once again Picnic Penarth – the town’s annual street-food event has taken-over Station Approach for a weekend of  outdoor cooking, live music and locally-produced food and drink.

Open-sided marquees were set up to provide seating and shelter from weather for alfreco diners – but many preferred to eat out in the sun

The undercover seating was all taken within an hour of the event opening – leaving late-comers to stand – or sit on the tarmac road surface.

There was sheltered seating available under open marquees set up in Station Approach but almost all the seats were taken.

A few bales of hay provided for outdoor seating – but the the one thing which is always  conspicuously missing from  Picnic Penarth is grass – or any semblance of same.

Some families resorted to squatting on the road to eat their “picnic” in the gutter. Some artificial grass might have been a good idea

A handful of families  resorted to squatting on the grubby roadside kerb to eat their alfreco meals.

Some  customers thought that artificial grass laid around the picnic area  would be a good idea – and help give those  attending more of a feel of an actual country picnic.

Customers in the Labour-controlled Penarth Town Council’s 3rd Picnic Penarth had to resort to eating whilst squatting on the kerbs or standing. There was nowhere to sit.

The Picnic benches were fine – but there weren’t enough to meet the demand

In many ways the event – launched in 2015 – is still bedding down and in the early stages of development.

The first “Picnic” was held in September 2015 outside Gimber Motors. The  second, in Spring 2016, took-over the whole of Station Approach and this weekend’s event is the third.

World famous opera star and local resident Sir Bryn Terfel was visiting the event for the first time

There were several famous faces amongst the customers ranging from a clutch of local tv news presenters to Penarth’s world-famous opera singer  Sir Bryn Terfel – who was sampling Picnic Penarth for the first time.

The is wide variety of cuisine available including Indian and Thai dishes

Some of the cosmopolitan fare being served at Picnic Penarth III

Last autumn’s scheduled “Picnic Penarth” was cancelled at short notice when the  Labour-controlled Vale of Glamorgan Council refused to provide any funding for the event.

That left Penarth Town Council needing to find £2,000 from sponsorship – forcing the third Picnic  to be deferred until now .

A temporary bar set up outside The Bottle Shop is doing brisk business this weekend – as is a similar bar set up by – Etcetera

Kevin Halborg with his Pizza Pronto team whose  famous flatbread pizzas are flying off the hotplates

Many starstruck young fans enjoyed listening to the music

There was live music from Danelle Lewis underwritten by sponsors Genera

Greek Souvakis from Meat and Greek smelled as appetising as they looked

Although Station Approach had been closed off to traffic since Friday evening  the Picnic event proper didn’t begin until 15:00 yesterday (Saturday) afternoon – running to 22:00

Despite a cool, grey start – the weather picked up,  the sun came out and the crowds came along to enjoy the ambience, sample the local wine and beer and taste a wide range of freshly-cooked dishes –  ranging from the local to the oriental.

Despite a cool wind the crowds came out in force and  traders are hoping for another busy day today (Sunday)

Traders reported brisk business and by 17:00 there were queues lining up outside  most of the street-food outlets. Today (Sunday) Picnic Penarth will run from 11:00 to 19:00.


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  1. penarthblog says:

    I hope everyone who attends has a great time, fantastic for families.

  2. Anne Greagsby says:

    Oh the joy of a picnic in a carpark! Could do better.

  3. Arthur Pound says:

    Another lovely family event organised by Penarth Town Council. Don’t let the killjoys spoil it in future years.

  4. A Smith says:

    Good to see local businesses making the most of the event to meet customers and get some extra sales, well done.

    Can’t help feeling sad looking at the former Legion Club in the background though. If only their moribund management could have shown similar entrepreneurial zeal it would still be open. Its closure was a very sad loss for the town.

    Hope today goes well for everyone.

  5. John64 says:

    I never thought i’d find myself agreeing with Anne Greasgby! There is another venue in the town – the pitch and putt course on the cliff top. Plenty of space, plenty of parking, fabulous view without loss of valuable car parking in the town centre, disruption to travellers. Problem getting there? A shuttle bus!

  6. Andrew Worsley says:

    Lets face it , if you cannot find a place in Penarth to eat or buy takeway food your either not trying or walking with your eyes closed , this event is not really needed and especially in that location , as John64 says their is a better location anyway. And I note that the music provided by the young woman was only attracting toddlers , that wasn’t fair to her and if I was her I wouldn’t attend again .

    • Valerie Dubbleton says:

      You miss the point Mr Worsley, it’s not a matter of finding somewhere “to eat or buy takeaway food”, it’s about bringing the community together, spending time with family, meeting friends. The music was enjoyed by many people, not just toddlers. Were you there or stuck at your keyboard?

  7. Grey says:

    There is a lovely picnic area in The Kymin with grass to sit on instead of the pavement kerbside and area for youngsters to play. There is also the seafront with benches and park areas below and above which would be much less cramped and gives lots of room for expansion and provides a rowdy made bandstand for music

  8. Lex79 says:

    Plassey Square would make an excellent venue for 2018! Great views and no need for a shuttle bus.

  9. Andrew Worsley says:

    Does it mean that if I wasn’t their Valerie I have no right to comment on what I see in the photos ?and I only have your word for the fact that many people enjoyed the music . As for the people of Penarth in general they are very narrow minded ,i am of course refering to those born or raised in the town or who have come back after a number of years, and the town is rife with gossips who are quick to sit in judgement on people they have never met or conversed with, also they have no real sense of humour . Of course their are exceptions to this and thankfully, the influx of the English and others have helped to dilute this. But why would I wish to mingle (or try to) with such people only to be cold shouldered .

  10. lesley withers says:

    Although the weather wasn’t kind to us today, I really enjoyed the atmosphere of the Penarth Picnic. I could appreciate how much work had gone into the organisation of the event. The music was fun, and there was a great choice of food stalls. The vegan festival at the Paget rooms was an added attraction. People are only too quick to moan and complain, but how many events do they put on themselves? We are very lucky to have so much going on to enjoy in Penarth. Thanks very much to the organisers.

  11. I would just like to say that despite the weather (which nobody can control) I thought this years effort was by far the most well organised and slickist of Picnics Yet.
    Yes i am one of the organisers BUT many people come together to make Picnic happen some who do a rather thankless task. The whole idea of the event s to try and bring people together in a way that showcases some of the best things locally but also allows things to evolve.
    3 events is not a long timeline in terms of oppertunity for development when soo many variables are involved i am however very proud of the event and how it has developed. im also glad to know it will continue to develop.

    Station Approach was chosen as its actually in the centre of Penarth, it has the obvious train links a taxi office and is only a short walk from the centre. It also more importantly has a hard surface which whilst nos as esthetically pleasing as grass is far more practical for stalls, disabled access, Push chairs, dogs (the mess) bad weather and for cleaning up.

    I would like to thank all of the people that cam and made the most of what wasnt the best weather ever and got behind people trying to actually do something. Not everyone is going to enter the spirit of it buut we can only try to engage as many people as possible.

    I would also like to thank ALICE from PTC who is the real driving force behind the event doing all the paperwork and behind the scences stuff that enable all the stall holders and logistics people do their thing. Alice was also there till gone 8pm in the pouring rain sweeping up and litter picking the site (with some others) but it is her sheer comittment that gets the event over the line everytime.

    biased i maybe but i think Penarth is very lucky to have her.

    • Kevin Halborg says:

      Well said that man! Completely agree, the effort that goes into this event, behind the scenes, is beyond impressive. Penarth Picnic will continue to evolve as the very spirit and culture that conceived the idea will continue this ensuring it’s continued success for all of parties to enjoy.

  12. Dan Potts says:

    Thanks to all the volunteers who helped make this fantastic event happen. I was there for two enjoyable hours on Friday evening.

  13. Nincompoop says:

    Went yesterday and really enjoyed it, thank you very much to all the organisers. My family just about coped with sitting on hard floor, maybe the council could put some some underfloor heating under the conctrete for next year? Also maybe provide some comfy chairs with inbuilt massage and maybe have waiter service . I am joking of course, even if all of these silly suggestions were implemented, there would always be someone on here moaning about something!!

  14. Fishhenge says:

    Where were the nearest toilets?

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