Please note: these FAQs updated in August 2023 and will be subject to further updates. Please check the website regularly for the most recent information.
Seating & Equipment
What are the seating arrangements?
We have a selection of different types of portable, outdoor chairs, but you can also bring your own chairs, blankets or cushions to sit on. Our outdoor shows may have different seating set ups, so please follow the guidance from volunteers when you arrive on site. They will be able to guide you to the relevant locations to set up your seating, or help you access the seating we have available.
How accessible is the space for wheelchair users and those with mobility issues?
Our outdoor venue is used as our overflow car park in the Winter months; it is a paved area surrounded by trees. There is free parking directly opposite, including 3 spaces for Blue Badge holders, approx. 30m from the performance area. Terrain to travel across – paved access road between car park & Outdoor venue.
The space is flat, on one level with a wide, open gateway to access. The seating configuration is flexible. Toilets (including an accessible toilet) are located inside the venue and there is a gentle ramp (no steps) to access the building through double doors.
Where will toilet facilities be and how will these be managed?
The toilets inside the venue will be open for audience members to use – it is a short walk into the venue.
Will there be tables to eat at?
No – If we are serving food will be presented so that it is possible to eat on your lap.
If you are bringing your own food please make use of the bins & recycling available on site, or take your rubbish away with you at the end.
Where can I park?
Free parking is available in the main theatre car park situated opposite the outdoor space. We encourage all those who can to consider travelling to the venue by foot, or by bicycle, instead of driving. We ask that all drivers take extra care when entering and leaving the car park as there will be more pedestrian traffic around the car parks than standard.
Performances & Weather
Are shows going to have an interval?
Depending on the length of the show, some will have an interval and some will not. This information will be available with the details about the show when you book online.
Will I be able to hear the performance?
If you are hard of hearing, please let us know when booking your ticket using the special comments facility. arrive early enough to sit near the front and make yourself known to front of house staff who will help to seat you accordingly. We are exploring options to improve the experience for hard of hearing patrons during the summer season. Please contact the venue directly if you would like to know more about this.
Will I be able to see the performance or will people be in the way?
Chairs are not fixed and we will be able to arrange in different configurations to ensure everyone can see.
What happens in the event of bad weather?
We anticipate the traditional English summer, so, in the event of rain, shows will go ahead. Should the weather be considered high risk, (e.g. very high winds; storms; very heavy and continuous rain or hail) then the show will be initially held (if the weather shows signs of improving), or moved indoors to our main theatre space. This decision will be made jointly by the Duty Manager at The Place Bedford, and the artistic company presenting the show.
Can I bring an umbrella?
Please do not bring an umbrella as this could obscure the view for other audience members. We do recommend bringing a hat on especially sunny days.
What will happen if it rains? Will I get a refund?
If it rains and the show can still go ahead (where this is agreed by the Duty Manager and company presenting the show), your ticket will not be refunded if you choose not to attend. Most of our outdoor shows have been made with the British summer weather in mind.
Are all tickets going to be digital and how will this work - do I need to bring a phone or print anything out?
Tickets will be as standard for our live events. We will be scanning the barcode/QR code on your tickets at the door. We can do this from your phone screen, so please consider the environment before you print off your tickets at home. Should you be unable to find your digital ticket or print off, don’t worry, the team at Box Office will have access to the system to check your booking on the door.
What safety measures will be in place?
All events will be run in line with up-to-date government guidelines regarding COVID-safe venues. Social distancing rules will be adhered to. Hand gel will be available. Our internal spaces will be regularly cleaned and sprayed with virus-suppressant liquid. Where necessary we will reduce queueing and implement one-way systems. If at any time during your visit you feel unsafe please speak to a member of our volunteer team and let us know. We want to improve our delivery so that you receive the best, safest and most enjoyable experience possible.
Is track and trace in place? Will all members of the group have to do track and trace?
Current guidelines say that we must collect contact and tracing details from everyone in the party, so we will be doing this at the door. This will slow down the process of seating people – so please arrive early to have time to do this.
We are working on a way for you to pre-fill Track & Trace details at home before you arrive at the venue in order to speed up arrival, please keep an eye on your confirmation emails for more details.
Will I need to wear a face covering?
We do not anticipate that you will need to wear a face covering for outdoor events. However, please bring one with you as you will need it to access the indoor facilities, e.g. toilets. It is also recommended that you wear your masks when arriving and leaving the outdoor area.
How early do I have to arrive?
Please arrive in good time before the start of the performance/event you are attending – we suggest around 20-30 minutes before so that you can get settled and longer if you wish to order drinks and food. The site will always be open 1 hour before the start of evening events.
Will we have to take a test before we can come in?
We do not anticipate that you will need to, unless the government makes this mandatory, but we may do temperature testing at the door. Lateral flow tests are available for the general public to collect and take themselves at home, should you wish to do this. If you need more information on where you can collect these click the link.
Will we need to prove we've had the vaccine?
No – unless the government makes this mandatory.
Will everyone there be free of COVID?
It is not possible to guarantee that everyone will be free of COVID but all relevant safety measures and precautions will be taken in line with government guidance.
What will happen if I'm told to isolate? Will I get a refund?
Yes, if you need to isolate then a refund will be arranged.
Food & Drink
Will there be provision of food and drink at the venue and what will it be?
The bar will be open for all performances and there will be service to your seat. Food will be available on Friday and Saturday evenings only initially. Food will have to be ordered when you book tickets and the menu will be on the website to enable you to choose in advance
Can I bring a picnic?
Food will be available from our on site kitchen, including a variety of picnic boxes. Please order in advance via the website. If you would like to bring your own food, please be mindful of others around you, and consider the environmental impact of your waste. We are committed to using products with recyclable or compostable non-plastic packaging, so, where possible, avoid bringing single-use plastic items with you.
Can I order delivery food (e.g.pizza) to be delivered?
We recommend not, as this could cause disruption to the event since there is no way of guaranteeing that the delivery will coincide with the timings of the show