Ludlow Food Festival raises a glass for jubilee year
The UK's longest running food festival turns 25 this weekend and organisers are gearing up to mark the event in style.
Ludlow Food Festival returns to the grounds of the town's castle with the promise of more than 180 stalls and a packed schedule that is sure to get taste buds tingling.
There will be free talks and demonstrations from leading lights in the food world including chefs, educators, campaigners and award-winning authors.
There are four live demonstrations stages as well as the popular Talks and Tastings programme, and the Aardvark Festival Bookshop, with many famous names offering book signings over the weekend.
To appeal to younger visitors, Grow Cook Learn will be hosting a drop-in tent throughout the weekend, and the Fast 5 Show will help keep children entertained with an interactive visual display during Saturday and Sunday.
In a continuation of Ludlow Food Festival's long-standing partnership with the Slow Food Movement, the organisation will host a series of exper-led workshops.
Many producers will be showcasing a range of limited-edition creations to mark the 25th anniversary edition of the festival, from the Beefy Boys special festival burger to Sytch Farm Studio’s handmade ceramics.
Beyond the castle walls, visitors can also participate in the much-loved Sausage and Ale Trails. Local butchers and brewers will be going head-to-head as more than 1,000 participants scoff and sup their way around the town.
There is also the hustle and bustle of weekend markets in Castle Square to enjoy.
On Sunday there will be a hand-picked collection of small scale food producers which often proves to be a nursery for rising stars of future festivals.
Events manager Hannah Mackley said: “The festival team are so excited about our jubilee.
"Over the years the food festival has been an integral part of my life, it’s a wonderful addition to the fabric of the town.
"We are really proud of the fact that we were the first ever food festival in the UK and that we’re still going strong 25 years later – and that we get so much support from Ludlow’s residents and many independent businesses.
"This ongoing success is testament to the dedication of so many people – from producers to our army of generous volunteers.
"Food and drink are a wonderful way of uniting people and our festival really brings the community together.
"We look forward to welcoming 15,000 visitors throughout the weekend.”