Annual Events in Luton, Bedfordshire

Luton in Bedfordshire hosts many annual events attended by residents and visitors as a large and growing town. Below is an example of some of the yearly events held in Luton.

Monty’s Big Charity Bike Ride

The Monty’s Big Charity Bike Ride is a significant event every year in Luton. It was set up back in 2009 and has since raised over £500,000 for local charities. It starts at the Nine Elms Pub on Leagrave Road with a Red Arrows fly over, then follows on to the Waterside Community Centre for lunch. The Cycle home is through parks and country lanes ending at the Bullock pub. It is a fun, family day out.

What is the history of Monty’s Big Charity Bike Ride?

This ride was created in Luton accountant memory of Montague ‘Monty’ Haines, an avid cyclist. In 2009 Mr Haines was diagnosed with a brain tumour and died a few months later, aged 39. The organisers wanted to get people from all parts of Luton involved in a fun event that would not only raise money but also help to raise awareness about cancer.

Luton Carnival

The Luton Carnival occurs annually in July as a celebration of African and Caribbean culture in the town. It is held at various venues, including the Luton Carnival Stadium at Shire Hill, where there is a parade of floats and dancers, live music, a market day, and lots of stalls.
The International Carnival is held annually in the spring at Luton Hoo. There are lots of performers from around the world, including carnival parades, live music, drumming and reggae. There is a wide variety of stalls selling jewellery, crafts, and food from all over the world.

What is the history of the Luton International Carnival?
The Luton International Carnival began in 1981 when local resident Arnold Williams, who was born in Trinidad, decided to celebrate his own heritage and that of other Caribbean people living in Luton.

The first Carnival was held on 25 May 1981 and attracted up to 25,000 people. The Carnival was held again the following year and has been held annually since then. It is now called ‘Luton International Carnival’.

What to wear to Carnival?
As this is a carnival, the dress code is informal. Traditionally people wear mainly Caribbean and African clothing, but the dress code is also relaxed and easy-going.

Preparations for the Luton International Carnival
If you are attending the Carnival on Friday or Saturday, then there should be no need to make any elaborate preparations. If you are attending on Sunday, you will need to make a long weekend of it and pack travelling clothes for Monday morning.

The Luton Game Fair

The annual Game Fair takes place in the autumn at the Sir William Dunn School on the Woodlands Campus of Luton Grammar School. There are around 100 stalls, including live animal displays, quail racing, pigeon racing and falconry. There are also crafts, a cafe and plenty of displays to keep children entertained.

Luton Food and Drink Festival

This annual Food Festival is held in the autumn at Luton Hoo. There are lots of different food stalls, with everything from Indian street food to international cuisine. There is also a wine bar, live music, and entertainment.

Kids Fest

Kids Fest is a lively day of fun for the whole family at St George’s Fields. There are lots of activities on offer, including face painting, arts and crafts, fairground rides, mini-golf, and children’s entertainers.

How to get to Luton?

Luton is on the M1 motorway and is easily accessible from London and other parts of the UK. It is situated on the A5, which links it with Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire, Buckinghamshire, and Oxfordshire. There are regular bus services into Luton and trains to London’s King’s Cross station, but all train stations around Luton can be reached by train in about 30 minutes.
Luton railway station is located in Luton town centre near to the New Street shopping area.

Where to stay in Luton?

Luton has several hotels and is popular with business travellers due to its proximity to London. There is also plenty of bed and breakfasts and guest houses in the area.

The main hotels in Luton are:
1. Coombe Abbey Hotel
2. The Latimer Hotel
3. Holiday Inn Express, Luton Airport
4. Mercure Holland House Hotel and Spa

The following is a selection of other hotels in Luton:
1. Best Western Bedfordshire Golf and Country Club
2. Blue Mountain Guest House
3. Bucks Head Hotel
4. Crestwood Guest House
5. Gateway Guest House
6. Hartwell Farmhouse B&B
7. The Heath Hotel
8. Holiday Inn Express, Luton Airport
9. The Kingsbury Hotel
10. The Marston Lodge Hotel
11. Millgate House B&B
12. Premier Inn Luton North