June’s warm weather makes it the perfect month for enjoying a picnic with your family, which is why, for the past decade, it has played host to National Picnic Week, which takes place every year to help people get out into their local spaces and enjoy tasty, local food.

With the ongoing uncertainty with the coronavirus, we won’t be able to celebrate as we usually do but that doesn’t mean we can’t dine alfresco during National Picnic Week.

We don’t recommend travelling to your favourite open spaces, but if you have one nearby where you can safely practice social distancing or you have a garden or some floor space for an indoor picnic, then feel free to join in! This year’s event runs from 22nd-28th June, so there is bound to be some sunshine and some wonderfully smelling flowers for you to enjoy while you eat.

To help you get in the mood for a picnic, whether that is outdoors or indoors, here are some fun facts you might night know about picnics!

Did you know..?

  • Picnics were invented by the French? Well, we say invented, the French popularised the concept of picnics after the French Revolution when all the royal parks fell into public ownership. Families and friends would bring refreshments and meet up in the parks to enjoy the sunshine and the landscaped gardens – why not theme your own picnic around France using a red, white and blue blanket or packing some French cheeses to take with you?
  • When it comes to picnics in general, originally they were used as a social event which would involve whole communities. Everyone would bring along an item of food or drink which would then be shared around.
  • Scotch Eggs were invented in London. That’s what Fortnum and Mason claim anyway. They say they came up with the idea back in the 1730s and they still sell their own version today.
  • Scotch Eggs aren’t actually the most popular snack to enjoy at a picnic, according to research crisps are the most popular picnic snack, although this does tend to change with food trends throughout the years. Fifty years ago, the most popular food item at a picnic was a cheese sandwich.
  • The reason June was chosen for National Picnic Week is because it is the most popular time for picnics in the UK. In the USA, 4th July is their most popular day, whereas the Italians go for Easter Monday and the French head out with their baskets and blankets on Bastille Day.
  • Apparently the average person has three picnics a year, so if you’ve not had your first one of 2020 yet, now is a great time to start!

Of course, we recommend that you follow the current government guidelines and maintain 2ms distance at all times if you’re heading out to a public space, we also recommend that you use sustainable plates and cutlery where possible and to take all your rubbish home with you so that Devon remains as beautiful as you found it. 

For a real Devon picnic, whether that’s indoors, in your garden or at your local park, why not stop by one if the region’s farmshops or delis to grab some locally produced food? You can find details of some stores here.

If you take part in National Picnic Week, we’d love to hear about it, you can tag us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.