ORGANISERS of an event dubbed the UK’s ‘gastronomic Glastonbury’ have set tastebuds tingling with plans to return to Tatton Park.
BBC MasterChef 2019 winner Irini Tzortzoglou will join the star-studded line-up at Foodies Festival which helps raise cash for Crisis UK with events up and down the country.
More than 30,000 visitors will enjoy a mouth-watering array of attractions taking place in the stately home’s glorious parkland over the weekend July 12-14.
The festival series, billed as the country’s ‘biggest celebration of food, drink and live music,’ is bigger than ever this year.
It visits eight UK venues to serve up a vibrant Street Food Village, Kids Cookery School, Healthy Living Area, Chef’s Theatre, new Vegan Beer Tent and Dog Arena with fun competitions as well as Food and Drink masterclasses and hilarious chilli-eating contests.
Food connoisseurs can see culinary genius in action in the Chefs Theatre. As well as Irini, the line-up includes MasterChef finalist David Crichton, Vegan author Katy Beskow better known as ‘Little Miss Meat Free,’ TV chef Valentina Harris, Wholefood Warrior Eva Humphries and an array of Bake Off winners.
Local talent is represented by Joe Liptrot of Cottons Hotel, Knutsford and Mark Fletcher of Mere Golf Club. All will cook their favourite dishes.
Over three days there will be gastronomic delights galore with more than 30 food stalls and a chance to sample and buy from over 100 of the country’s finest artisan producers.
Greek-born grandmother Irini Tzortzoglou, 61, will bring a taste of her homeland in Crete. She said: “Winning MasterChef has been one of the best experiences of my life and being invited to Foodies Festival is just one of the many great things to come out of this journey. More so as it raising awareness of such an important issue through its efforts for Crisis UK.
“I am so thrilled to be able to cook some dishes inspired by MasterChef live and to share my top cooking tips with the people of beautiful Cheshire and beyond.”
For the second year running, the festival will play host to the Musicians Against Homelessness (MAH) stage.
Appearing at Tatton are chart-toppers Scouting for Girls and Queen tribute act Flash as well as 50 local bands.
MAH is an initiative founded by music PR Emma Rule and boasts industry guru Alan McGee who discovered Oasis as its Patron.
The project provides opportunities for up-coming talent while raising funds for UK-wide homelessness charity Crisis.
For every ticket sold, the festival will make a donation to the cause.
Festival director Sue Hitchen, who hails from Knutsford, said: “This year’s festival combines our two favourite things, music and food, and it’s going to be bigger and better than ever.
“We’ve made sure our visitors get the best in terms of star chefs and music acts. I’m also delighted to have Musicians Against Homelessness on board again and to be able to donate much-needed funds to Crisis.
“As we go up and down the country staging these festivals we see this is an issue in all areas, including those considered more affluent and we hope to do our bit to raise awareness and cash.”
Sue, who hails from Knutsford, is now based in Edinburgh where she edits Foodies magazine.
She moved there after meeting her TV voice over artist husband Jeremy and the couple have four daughters involved in the organising the festivals attracting millions every year.
The daughter of a former Knutsford mayor, she added: “Foodies Festival started in Edinburgh over 12 years ago because I wanted to run a family-friendly food festival where you could try new flavours and foods and enjoy a really fun day out with friends and family.
“Since then we have championed street food, welcomed Michelin-starred and top chefs from local restaurants, introduced local artisan producers and, more recently, encouraged unsigned music artists on the live music stage.
“We travel up and down the country but there is nowhere more stunning than Tatton with its historic stately home and parkland where deer roam freely. It’s a bonus to our foodie visitors to soak up this wonderful setting. We love it so much, we also return with a Christmas event.”
And Scouting for Girls can’t wait. “All of us are very excited to be playing Foodies Festival Tatton. We love food! We love festivals! We love music! What is not to like? We’ll be playing all our favourite hits to end what should be a perfect summer’s day.
“We’re very proud to be headlining the Musicians Against Homelessness stage in support of Crisis, the national charity for homeless people. Homelessness is a growing problem all over the UK and every penny raised helps save lives. We are looking forward to seeing many of our fans there.”