Earlham Park Cafe in Norwich CAN open for Radio 1 Big Weekend

Ingrid Henry and Hakan Torunogullari from the Earlham Park Cafe. Picture: James Bass

Ingrid Henry and Hakan Torunogullari from the Earlham Park Cafe. Picture: James Bass - Credit: James Bass

The cafe at Norwich's Earlham park will be able to open for the epic Radio One Big Weekend, after a deal was brokered.

Ingrid Henry, who runs the café with her husband Hakan Torunogullari, had received a letter on behalf of Norwich City Council stating the cafe would have to shut during the massive music festival, which will see stars such as Taylor Swift and Florence and the Machine performing to those lucky enough to get tickets.

But talks between Mrs Henry, Norwich City Council and the BBC mean the cafe will be able to be open for a weekend which promises to be one of the biggest events in the city this year.

Some 50,000 people will head to the city council-owned park for the event on May 23 and 24 and the decision to close the cafe sparked fury, with thousands signing a petition calling for a rethink.

The council had said the area the café is in was part of a cordoned off zone, within the event's backstage production area.


You may also want to watch:


But a deal has been brokered which will rejig that area, meaning mother-of-two Mrs Henry can open on a day which would provide a massive boost to her business.

Brenda Arthur, council leader, said: 'As soon as I heard about it, I and my deputy sat down with the cafe owner to talk about a range of options we could try to help.

Most Read

'We have worked very closely with the BBC and have come to an agreement where it will be able to continue to open as cafe that weekend.

'That's great, because it would have been sad if this had marred what promises to be a fantastic weekend.'

A spokeswoman for Norwich City Council said: 'The city council and Radio 1 have reached an agreement with the leaseholders of Earlham Park Café which will allow them to trade from their premises during Big Weekend.

'The whole of Norwich is looking forward to some great music and we hope they enjoy a very busy trading weekend.'

• What do you think of the decision? Tell us your views in the comments below.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter