GIGS and festivals may seem like a distant memory at the moment due to the current crisis.

With coronavirus restrictions tightening in Warrington, all we currently have are memories of great live music events.

In that spirit, did you know that it is 20 years ago to the day that Radiohead famously performed in Victoria Park?

The band surprised music fans across the country by shunning an arena tour in favour of a series of big top shows in 2000.

That included three gigs in Latchford on October 1, 2 and 3 – just as they were releasing their fourth album, Kid A.

The circus-style marquee saw 10,000 people at the park each night and was the brainchild of former Woolston High student Simon Moran, the founder of SJM Concerts.

Parr Hall manager Chris Persoglio was there.

He said: "I remember because I'd just bought a house off Knutsford Road which was very near to the site. I went to two nights of it and I could hear it from my back garden on the other night.

"It was the first time we'd had anything like that in Victoria Park – apart from the original V Festival.

"I remember the production being really good on it but I think there were some issues with the weather.


"But the show was amazing. I've always been a big fan of Radiohead. There was a huge buzz around the fact that Radiohead were doing a a big Warrington."

Readers have also been sharing their memories.

Steve Boardman said: "I was there – third row from the front – great concert and memories. As I remember Kid A was released the following day, I bought my copy in Our Price Warrington."

Warrington Guardian:

Richard Chambers added: "I went to the Sunday show, it was another stunning performance from a mind-blowing band.

"As it happens, HMV in Warrington opened at midnight for the release of Kid A and I was first in the queue.

'I was first in queue to buy Kid A from HMV Warrington at midnight. I count myself as the first person in the world to own that album'

"I got a Stanley Donwood designed t-shirt with my copy. I still count myself the first person in the world to own that album, which I realise is probably tosh, but until it is proved otherwise I will live out my days in pure ignorant bliss!"

Many travelled from far and wide for the show – putting Warrington on the music map.


Pasa Mustafa said: "I remember going to the Monday night gig. I was born in South London so the trek back then, especially to Victoria Park took me out of my comfort zone.

"It was raining and dark and a long walk from Mile End Station. I went with my girlfriend at the time who didn't like Radiohead. I have since learned to only date Radiohead fans!

"The gig was amazing I remember hearing National Anthem kick-starting it. I was just mesmerised by this new Kid A sound live. It was nuts.

"I'm now the biggest Radiohead fan. I've seen them a total of 12 times live plus a few Thom Yorke and Johnny Greenwood gigs too."


Jim Harker added: "A great show from a great band – I had been to their show in Cardiff and then drove up from Hertford to see them in Victoria park.

"We had a lovely afternoon in Warrington with the local fans who were so friendly. After the show we drove home arriving as the sun rose. Thank you Warrington."

Victoria Park was one of just five UK venues the five-piece played that year as part of an international tour which took in major European cities including Paris, Copenhagen, Brussels and Holland.

And back then tickets were just £25 – a fraction of what Radiohead tickets cost today.