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Food heroes flock to Padstow Christmas Festival

9th November 2012 Print

Organisers of Padstow Christmas Festival have unveiled new additions to this year's event with a second series of food forums and more celebrity chefs on stage.

Food hero Rick Stein, award-winning chef Brian Turner CBE, TV chef Phil Vickery, Michelin starred Angela Hartnett and restaurateur and food writer Mark Hix join a host of other culinary stars in the most impressive lineup yet at the three day event (Friday 7 - Sunday 9 December).

Set around the picturesque harbour of this North Cornish fishing town, the Padstow Christmas Festival attracts thousands of visitors who delight in the unique blend of family-friendly Christmas entertainment, live music and festive food.

Festival organiser Tina Evans said: "The festival is now in its fifth year and has continued to go from strength to strength. The timetable is jam packed for 2012 and the festivities are spread across the whole town, with many local businesses and restaurants running special offers.

"The support we have received from local chefs, in particular Rick (Stein) and The Seafood Restaurant, has been unbelievable. It is wonderful to have such big name chefs coming to Padstow to appear at our festival."

Following their popular debut last year, a series of food forums will again feature at the festival. The forums will see some of the country's leading industry professionals debate contemporary food issues in front of a live audience.

Originally the idea of Padstow's resident chef Rick Stein, this year's forums will look at topics such as the real price of milk, pop up restaurants and women in hospitality.

Rick Stein said: "The food forums always create lively debate. I am particularly looking forward to joining Brian Turner to discuss the real price of milk, which hit the headlines earlier this year. I'll be along to see Elizabeth Carter, consultant editor of the Good Food Guide telling us what she thinks of Trip Advisor and similar websites."

The food forums will take place throughout the weekend in the Chefs' Theatre, sponsored by Sharp's Brewery. The heated marquee will also host demonstrations from over 18 acclaimed chefs, including five with Michelin stars, and chefs from five of the UK's Top 100 Restaurants 2012 as voted by The Sunday Times.

The festival opens on Friday 7 December with a Christmas market, chef demonstrations and live music, and continues into the evening with a lantern parade, firework display, late night shopping, Santa's grotto and festive workshops for children.

A traditional Christmas Market with over 40 local producers will be on hand to tempt festival-goers with tasty treats and Cornish crafts, selling everything from chutneys and chocolates to mulled cider and mince pies.

On 'Super Saturday' Phil Vickery from ITV's This Morning will join Rick Stein OBE, Angela Hartnett, Mitch Tonks, Mark Hix, Jill Stein, Nathan Outlaw and Fifteen Cornwall's Andy Appleton in an unmissable line up that puts Padstow firmly on the international food stage.

The Christmas spirit continues throughout the weekend, including the annual Santa Fun Run raising money for Cornwall Hospice Care on Saturday, and a live performance on Sunday from Cornwall's Fisherman's Friends, famous for their sea shanties.

This year organisers have also introduced a festival cook book brimming with recipes and tips from all the chefs involved. Available now and priced at £9.95 the book can be bought from Padstow Tourist Information Centre and various outlets in Padstow to raise funds for this not for profit event.

For more information or to see a full programme of events, visit