Behind The Scenes At The Todd In The Hole Festival Coming This July


Mark Watts, co-founder of Todd in the Hole festival, talks to Absolutely Hertfordshire about what’s new for this year’s event from 14-16 July

Back in 2019, a new festival caught the attention of festival-goers in Hertfordshire and beyond. That was the year Todd in the Hole first opened its gates and the festival saw over 9,000 people attend over the course of the weekend, enjoying the likes of Definitely, could be Oasis, The Upbeat Beatles, Absolute Bowie and Ibiza legend Dave Pearce, as well as a pick of the region’s best new talent.

Despite boasting a stacked line-up of great bands, this is much more than your regular music festival; featuring everything from The Great British Elvis Off, Tug of War Competition, Chilli Eating Contest, to a fun filled Family Arena. This is unlike any festival you’ve ever been to, and we know it isn’t one you’ll forget in a hurry.

From the talented musicians on their four stages, to the real ale and delicious food brought to you from some of the UK’s best suppliers – this is a festival that will not only feed your soul, but also show it a darn good time.

Ahead of this year’s festival from 14-16 July, we spoke to co-founder Mark Watts to find out about the origins of Todd in the Hole and what to expect this summer.

Mark Watts David Nye Festival Founders Matt Higgs
Mark Watts and David Nye, Todd in the Hole Festival founders, photo by Matt Higgs

What originally inspired you to launch Todd in the Hole?

I planned a big 50th bash in the garden with a mini festival vibe. I’d always wanted to hold a proper festival on our land and the party spurred me on to start planning. I was good friends with David Nye, who already worked with festivals on the catering side, so the pair of us decided to team up and Todd in the Hole was born.

What is your own working background and why did you see the festival as a great next step?

I come from a farming background so nothing to do with festivals, but always thought we had a lovely piece of land that would make a perfect summer festival site.

Did you know at the first festival it was going to be a hit?

Not at all – we had no preconceptions at all about how popular it would be. It’s really hard work to grow a brand new festival, but every year more and more people get the Todd love and spread the word. Our best advertising is word of mouth.

Kids Entertainment Matt Higgs
Photo by Matt Higgs

Tell us about the location of the festival?

In beautiful fields in the heart of Hertfordshire, in between Hitchin and Stevenage.

What do you have planned for this year?

Every year gets bigger and better with new additions to the festival. We’re really excited to welcome Judge Jules to his first Todd in the Hole festival. As always we have amazing tribute acts playing and lots of great upcoming Herts based talent on our other stages.

Anything new we can look forward to?

Wellness in the Woods is a new addition to Todd and will offer festival goers a lovely space to escape the main festival. They’ll be family yoga, meditation and mindfulness, gratitude trees, healthy snacks and smoothies, breath workshops and loads more.

Judge Jules Credit Judge Jules
Judge Jules is on the line-up this year

Do you also live close by?

I live in Todd’s Green, round the corner from the festival site. I love the fact I can walk out my door and be in the middle of the stunning Hertfordshire countryside.

Your festival aside, what other places in Hertfordshire do you love visiting?

Redcoats Farmhouse, The Brockett Arms and any of the pubs in Ashwell.

How do you see the future of Todd in the Hole evolving?

We love the fact that Todd is all about community and Herts. Most of our bands and suppliers are from the area and we want to make sure the roots of the festival always maintain this. Who knows what we have in store for the future. As long as we can keep putting smiles on the faces of our visitors and they keep coming back it will be happy days.

Todd in the Hole runs from 14-16 July – see more at toddinthehole.co.uk

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