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Ludlow Food Festival 2017 - in pictures

By Nathan Rowden | South Shropshire entertainment | Published: | Last Updated:

There was something for everyone at Ludlow Food Festival, from locally-produced cheese to flavoured gin and even python kebabs.

The festival attracts some of the biggest names in the food industry with chef demonstrations and, new to this year, masterclasses.

Ludlow Food Festival 2017

There were also areas for children to learn about food. Pupils from Ludlow Junior School were in the Grow Cook Learn area making food and learning about Vikings as farmers on Friday.

Year 5 teacher Rebecca Smith said the school brings the students every year.

She said: “At the moment the children are doing a workshop with Grow Cook Learn and are learning about Vikings as farmers, making bread and butter and learning about grain.

“They’re enjoying it, it’s absolutely fantastic and also interesting.”

Cooking up a storm on a barbecue train was Grant Pigott, owner of West Coast Braai.

Some of the meat available for foodies to get their teeth into included ostrich, zebra, boerewars and python kebabs. Grant’s late father was a fireman then a train driver. He settled down in South Africa where he drove iron ore trains, so the barbecue train is a tribute to him.

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Grant said: “We only started the company in December. We specialise in South African food as I grew up in South Africa. My dad was from Herefordshire and he was a steam engine driver, I lost him and then my mum last year so I then started this. It’s been really popular since we started, it’s something completely different.

“We go up and down the country. We’ve done festivals and have been invited down to London and up to Liverpool. Kids love to see the train and grown-ups love it as well. It’s the story behind it that draws people in too, we always have a board out which says about my father driving the trains.”

Chairman of Ludlow Food Festival Phil Maile said talks have already been held about next year’s event. “The food festival keeps Ludlow’s profile up there. We were the first food festival in the area and a tremendous amount of work goes into it,” he added. “Already we’ve had discussions about next year’s festival, it doesn’t stop.

Not everybody wants to come to the same event each year, it’s good to get some fresh people in.”

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One stall holder brought along the animals which create the food, which were causing a buzz among visitors.

Ludlow & District Beekeepers’ Association had brought along a swarm in a glass container, along with the queen.

Gill Maclean, one of the committee members was telling a growing audience about the bees and the way they create honey. She said the association has been to Ludlow Food Festival every year since it started and have regularly had the same spot so people remember where they are each year.

She added: “We’ve been here since the start and in the same spot so people have got to know where we are and have come and found us.

“People can have a try of the honey and learn about the bees. We attract a lot of attention, people are fascinated by the bees and honey as it’s lovely. Quite often this is a place where we will pick up new members, people get a chance to learn abut hot to become a bee keeper. It’s important that bee keepers do things properly.

“People like coming to us as it’s the Ludlow Food Festival and we are the Ludlow & District Beekeepers’ Association.”

Hobsons Brewery, based in Cleobury Mortimer, has been to Ludlow Food Festival every year since it began in 1996.

Kate Pearce, marketing manager, said that visitors come and chat to them about the brewery and where it is and how the beer is made.

She said: “We were one of the very first exhibitors here.

“People like to learn the provenance of their food and drink, so they come and have a chat to us here.”

Cuddly hedgehogs with hats on were sat on the bar around the bottles of beer to advertise a beer which was created for the British Hedgehog Society, which is seven miles away from the brewery.

Kate said that the beer, Old Prickly, is a pale ale full of hop flavour and brewed with Columbus and Lubelski hops to give the beer a flavour of floral and citrus notes.

Kate added: “We were asked five years ago to brew a beer for the British Hedgehog Society and it’s become a permanent beer now.

“Each and every pint and bottle we sell we donate 5p to the charity and we’re just over £40,000 in donations to date. We donate to the funds to them each year now.”

One school was at the festival selling coffee for charity. Bridgnorth Endowed School’s Sixth Form has raised funds for Umonga Secondary School in Tanzania since 2013.

The business is called Taste of Tanzania. It was started with help from coffee entrepreneur Carrie Bates, founder of The Little Coffee Bag Co.

They developed an organic, fully bodied coffee bag which are individually wrapped.

Art teacher Louise Rhodes was at Ludlow Food Festival with Year 13 students Lewis Sunderland, aged 17, and James Whitt, aged 18.

Louise said: “The coffee is from a plantation near Kilimanjaro.

“It’s a Sixth Form-run business and the profit goes back to a school in Tanzania.

“This is the first event we’ve been to of the new school year, we will be going to various others in the coming months, and we also sell the coffee at Apley Farm Shop.”

Lee Meredith from Morgan’s Brew Tea Company based in Welshpool was promoting using tea in food.

Lee said his father Geoff started the business in 2006 when they took over Poppy’s Tudor Tearooms in Shrewsbury, which the family ran until 2010, and since then they have sold the different tea online from home.

Over the last six years the number of teas the company has sold has increased and the Lee said: We’re now trying to promote using tea in food and alcoholic beverages and if you like spicy food we have spicy tea too, our Chai Dragon’s Breath is very strong.”

Nathan Rowden

By Nathan Rowden
@NathRowden_Star

Digital journalist based at the Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley. Interested in breaking news and social media.

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