Beware festival fever

It’s that time of year again when traders in Caversham Road, Caversham and parts of the Oxford Road, forget the people who have been supporting them all year, as the pound signs ring up before their eyes.

The Reading Festival brings out the worst in those who plea for the local shopper to shop locally, but then can’t ditch them quick enough once they see the 90,000 spendthrift partygoers who can’t wait to part with their cash.

Signs spring up everywhere telling you where to get a breakfast, a baguette or some beer although nowadays smart phones are probably better at doing this, hence the numbers who seem to know exactly where the nearest Whethersponns is.

Thirty years ago I worked behind the bar at The Moderation pub in Caversham Road. When the festival was on they kept the biggest bar for regulars only while pop fans packed into the tiny public bar.

Now there is pretty much no businesses which make such special arrangements for their regulars.

So next time you are urged to shop locally, spare a thought for those in Reading who do just that – but find themselves at the back of the queue every August Bank Holiday.

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About Alan Bunce

Freelance journalist Former Community Editor with the Reading Post. Former Business Editor with the Reading Chronicle.
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