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Thousands expected for Ludlow Food Festival

By Lucy Todman | Entertainment | Published:

Up to 18,000 people are expected to flock through the gates of Ludlow Castle this weekend for the annual food festival.

The festival, which began in 1995 and now attracts some of the biggest names in the food industry, opens on Friday.

Tickets have been selling like hot cakes and organisers are hoping that this year will bring in bumper crowds.

Amongst the new activities is The Fire Kitchen, hosted by online hit DJ BBQ who will be bringing some very talented friends with him.

With more than 250,000 followers, DJ BBQ is known to millions more through Jamie Oliver's Foodtube which has 2.7 million subscribers.

Also on stage will be Ben Tish and Tom Brown, head chef of Outlaw's at The Capital in Knightsbridge and Niall Davidson, formerly of celeb-hangout Chiltern Firehouse.

Homegrown talent will be represented by Marcus Bean of Brompton Cookery School, near Shrewsbury . Also whipping up the crowd will be Ashley Palmer-Watts who heads up the kitchen at Dinner by Heston Blumental.

Returning to the show will be Great British Menu star Sue Stinchcombe and former Ludlow chef Shaun Hill.

Lindsay Rollings, event manager, said: "Everything is going great. We are on track with the build up at the castle and we are very excited.

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"The festival helps to create a sustainable town and brings in an additional 18,000 visitors.

"We just want Ludlow to be as vibrant as possible during the weekend because it reflects the ethos we have. Having the castle as a backdrop makes the festival even more unique and means we attract visitors and exhibitors from all over the country and even abroad.

"We have introduced some new activities for this year including The Fire Kitchen, Bake in Time and the Pop Up bookshop. The fact that this is our 23rd festival shows the success of it and how we are able to grown year on year."

With more than 160 exhibitors selling everything luxury sausage rolls to melt-in-the-mouth meringues, cider and flavoured vodka and gin setting up in the castle grounds, there is something to tickle everyone's tastebuds.

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The 2012 Bake Off winner John Waite will be demonstrating on the Wots Cooking stage on Friday. Since he won the series he has been resident chef on ITV's Lorraine and the co-host of ITV's hit show The Chopping Block.

For those feeling peckish there will be a Pop-Up Street Food Market on Saturday night at the Ludlow Brewing Company on Station Drive.

The festival opens at 10am until 5pm and is open until 6.30pm on Saturday and 5pm on Sunday.

Lucy Todman

By Lucy Todman
@shroptod

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star and Shrewsbury Chronicle based in Shrewsbury.

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