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Christchurch Food Festival set for Queen's jubilee bank holiday weekend

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CHRISTCHURCH Food Festival will have a Queen’s jubilee-themed line-up this year and run for four days over the bank holiday weekend in June.

The popular event will be held on The Quomps between 2nd and 5th June, and will feature entertainment stages, a chefs’ demonstration tent, and a big screen showing the BBC’s platinum jubilee coverage. Rows of tables decorated with bunting and adorned with Union Jacks will create a street party vibe.

Organiser Sarah Traynor said: “We wanted those coming to the festival to be able to join in with the rest of the country in celebrating this momentous occasion, so we incorporated our own street party so people can do that while enjoying some really great local food and drink.”

About 120 food and drink traders will be attending
About 120 food and drink traders will be attending

Around 120 food and drink traders will be setting up at the festival, and there will be a gin bar and a local beers bar.

Producers include New Forest Spirits, New Forest Shortbread, Fordingbridge Fudge, New Forest Tea Company, Deelicious Chilli Jam, The Garlic Farm, Scarlett Bakes Cakes, Riverford Organic Farmers and Noddy’s Cider.

Street food will include mac ‘n’ cheese, hot dogs, pizza, brisket burgers, paella and curries.

The chefs demo tent will welcome some top local and national culinary experts, including James Golding from The Pig, Luke Matthews of the Chewton Glen, baking genius Richard Bertinet, Perry Wakeman, who was recently named Affineur of the Year 2022 by the Academy of Cheese, and James Fowler, owner of The Larder House and Parlourmentary in Southbourne and Bodega wine bar in Christchurch.

The Sheep Show will be returning
The Sheep Show will be returning

Crowds will be kept entertained by dozens of local groups on the main stage, including choirs, theatre groups, dance troupes, bands and singers.

These will include Sound of Soul, Highcliffe Charity Players, Mad4Dance, Bournemouth Academy of Modern Music, The Mellor Sisters, The Fifinellas, Wavelength A Capella, Spinout UK and Downside Up.

Also joining the line-up are singer-songwriters David Mein, Rachel More, Grace, Millie Watson, Sara Harris, Retro Rita and Gary the Reverend Toon.

Following on from its huge success last year, the Sheep Show will make another appearance, and the bandstand will host DJ sets.

The chefs demo tent will welcome some top local and national culinary experts
The chefs demo tent will welcome some top local and national culinary experts

Those wishing to get involved in the nation’s platinum jubilee celebrations will not be disappointed. Big screen jubilee footage will feature across the four days, showing the Trooping of the Colour ceremony, the service of thanksgiving, the Derby at Epsom Downs Racecourse, the Platinum Party at the Palace, the Big Jubilee Lunch and the Platinum Jubilee Pageant.

The band of the Royal British Legion Christchurch will also be playing, and there will be a cake competition with a jubilee theme.

“This is going to be a really great event,” said Sarah.

“We’ve really tried as much as can to use local traders and local chefs, and we’ll be celebrating the jubilee in style.

“This is the first time we’ll be holding the event across four days, but it’s just such a popular event so the demand is there.”

The bandstand will host DJ sets
The bandstand will host DJ sets

Christchurch Food Festival is organised jointly by Real Food Festivals, World of Events and Lymington-based Onyx Events.

The festival will be raising money for the Christchurch Food Festival Education Trust, which works in schools to promote healthy eating and provide cookery courses.

Christchurch Town Council will also be hosting a beacon lighting event at Mudeford Quay on Thursday 2nd June from 5pm, with entertainment, music and food and drink.

And on Saturday 4th June from 11am-4pm, Druitt Gardens will host a children’s jubilee tea party, with kids entertainment including a circus workshop, nature trail and arts and crafts tent.

There will also be a cupcake competition for under-12s. For more information about the food festival or to enter the cake competition, go to christchurchfoodfest.co.uk

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