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People flock to the annual Food and Drink Festival despite the wet weather

PUBLISHED: 18:48 26 August 2018 | UPDATED: 18:48 26 August 2018

People at the mini farm at the Food and Drink Festival in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: RUSSELL COOK

People at the mini farm at the Food and Drink Festival in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: RUSSELL COOK

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It may have been a bit cold and damp but people came in their wet weather gear along with their umbrellas and flocked to the annual Food and Drink Festival, in Bury St Edmunds.

James Tanner giving a demonstration at the Food and Drink Festival in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: RUSSELL COOKJames Tanner giving a demonstration at the Food and Drink Festival in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: RUSSELL COOK

There were up to 64 stalls and food outlets for people to mull over along with a specially installed beach at the Arc Shopping Centre and a Farmer’s Market, on Angel Hill.

And thorughout the day celebrity chef James Tanner gave three cookery demonstrations from his On The Stoves Cookery Theatre, in the Buttermarket, shared with shows from staff from The Northgate, Maison Bleue and LP Bar.

Many came early to avoid the rain and the streets were busy when the festival started at 10am but slowly as the rain descended people made for home or found a dry spot to eat and drink in the many local restaurants, cafes and bars in the town centre.

George’s Bakery stall, on Angel Hill, was busy with customers lining up to purchase their favourite pieces of cake along with the Wobbly Bottom Farm who were selling a selection of cheeses.

James Tanner giving a demonstration at the Food and Drink Festival in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: RUSSELL COOKJames Tanner giving a demonstration at the Food and Drink Festival in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: RUSSELL COOK

And the Wild Game Meat stall on the Cornhill was also busy with people tasting their selection of meats.

Youngsters were drawn to the sand and parents the deckchairs at the beach while many children were able to touch some of the animals at the mini farm in Abbeygate Street.

Mark Cordell, the chief executive of Our Bury St Edmunds, which organises the event, said: “Despite the rain today a good day was still had by all and all the traders I spoke to stated, considering the weather, it had been a good day for them.

“The cooking demonstrations were still very popular and numbers, although difficult to quantify, were remarkably good considering the inclement weather.

Wet weather set to continue tonight but brighter tomorrow. Picture: RUSSELL COOKWet weather set to continue tonight but brighter tomorrow. Picture: RUSSELL COOK

“We’re really looking foward to tomorrow now with the weather expected to be much better.

“Up until the rain came it was pretty busy and hoping for a better day tomorrow with Paul Rankin giving a demonstration.

“And in the true British spirit the children were watching the Punch and Judy show in the Arc and building their sandcastles in the rain.”

The event continues tomorrow when the weather is forecast to be bright and sunny up to noon but then light cloud is due for the afternoon.

The Food and Drink Festival in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: RUSSELL COOKThe Food and Drink Festival in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: RUSSELL COOK

Paul Rankin is the celebrity chef for the day and will be sharing the platform with No 4 Restaurant and Bar, the Angel Hotel and Casa Del Mar and there will be more stalls at the Farmer’s Market with the number up to 30.

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