A new Harleston event as part of a region-wide drive to raise the profile of food and drink businesses in the area has been hailed as a “great success” after an estimated 3,000 visitors came to the town.
A Taste of Harleston, held on Saturday, was held in a bid to celebrate locally made and produced foods, involve the community and boost business by enticing shoppers into the town.
It is part of the Waveney Valley Food and Drink Festival, which runs until October 11. Diss and Eye, as well as Beccles, Bungay, Halesworth and Loddon are hosting a wide array of events, including tastings to farm tours, demonstrations, special local menus, community events, special offers, open days and lots more will be offer at the festival.
Nicky Stainton who leads the Events Team of Harleston’s Future, said: “We are really pleased with how the day went; we estimate that there were at least 3,000 people in town.
“More than 40 businesses and organisations and a team of 25 volunteers worked together to bring people into Harleston and ensure they had a great experience. We have a fantastic community here and everyone pulled out the stops. The atmosphere was great.”
Andy Orford, manager of butchers D A Browne and Son, set up a barbecue beside the shop selling a range of locally produced hot dogs, while cookery and butchery demonstrations were hosted by a team from Pepperell’s Meats, and Mat Brown, chef/landlord of The Swann Inn, Fressingfield.
Visitors to Harleston perused around the 19 shops, cafes and restaurants on a food trail, while other attractions included a Country Kitchen Street Market, children’s craft activities, a window display competition, street entertainment by juggler Ian
Marchant and whacky sausage characters Chorizo and Cumberland.
Ryan Bartram, of Harleston, was victorious in the Ready Steady Bake sausage roll competition which Emma Johnson, cluster co-ordinator at Archbishop Sancroft High School, helped organise. Pupils from feed primary schools and nurseries got involved, sausages were donated by Piedbridge Farm of Alburgh and Pepperell’s Meats, prizes were awarded at The Swan Hotel. Pepperell’s Meats also donated a trophy in a bid to ensure it becomes an annual event.
For a full list of events part of the Waveney Valley Food and Drink Festival, see www.visitwaveneyvalley.co.uk/food-drink/waveney-valley-food-drink-festival-2015