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The Perfect Street Party

Whether you’re into the royals or not, the point is that Harry and Meghan’s big day means we’ve got an extra excuse for a celebration. Here’s our handy guide to organising a street party, including what grub to serve and the stuff you’ll need to prepare.

What is a Street Party?

It’s when neighbours get together to arrange a party outside on the street, rather than in someone’s back garden. Because it’s essentially a private party you probably won’t need formal stuff like get a music licence. However, you might need to get permission from the council to close your road.

Before You Get Going

At the end of the day it’s about having fun, getting everyone involved and not causing tension so the neighbours like the idea too. If the whole street isn’t on-board but a few of you fancy doing something there are other, smaller-scale things you can do (you'll find some ideas further down the page).

The Official Stuff

Parties on a quiet street that don’t affect nearby roads are classed as small events. According to the government website, you don’t need to tell the council if you hold a smaller event that does not require permission for road closures. More information is available here.

Feeding People

Once you’ve worked out which neighbours are supplying the chairs and tables, it’s time to turn your attention to the food. If the weather’s okay you could plump for a barbecue which is always good for feeding a crowd. For something daintier, an afternoon tea theme with easy-to-transport items is a nice idea. Sandwiches dry out quickly so opt instead for things like Scotch eggs, sausage rolls, savoury scones and cakes. If possible, keep to food that can be eaten on the go so you only have to supply napkins and bin bags for clearing up afterwards.

Get Decorating

Nothing says party quite like balloons and bunting. Get into the spirit of things by going all out in red white and blue. Print out Union Jack bunting and get the kids together before the party to make it. People might like to bring flowers from their gardens or colourful tablecloths to add to the party vibe too.

Keeping Everyone Amused

There’s no need to pay for entertainment. Instead use the talent on your street. There might be a hidden guitar player or someone who’s brilliant at face painting. It really doesn’t matter what it is, as long as everyone is having a good time. It’s also a good idea to plan a few games. Street cricket (all you need is a bat, a tennis ball and a wheelie bin for the stumps) is a game everyone can play. Or for something a bit different, set up a selfie table. Leave out some props (sunglasses, hats, etc.) or print out your own. The best selfies win a prize (like an extra cake).

Make a Plan B

What happens if it rains on the day of the event? Could it be moved indoors? Would it have to be postponed? Get a contingency in place in case the preferred plan fails or the situation changes. If a street party seems a bit much to take on, there are other things you can do to celebrate. • Go posh with a garden party. Depending on how big your garden is you could invite your next door neighbours around over a cup of tea and slice of cake. • Take a picnic. Is there a park you and your neighbours could meet at for a picnic after the wedding has finished? Everyone brings their own food so no one has to be responsible for organising the catering and you could have a game of celebratory rounder’s, too. • Have a wedding breakfast. As the weddings at midday it’s more of a brunch, but who doesn’t like some eggs and bacon? Give the food a royal theme and make the Queen’s own Scotch pancakes recipe. Serve with fruit or a full English.

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