Eat Wellington Food and Drink Festival drew big crowds to High Street and South Street on Saturday 2 September to join in a celebration of some of the Best in the West food and drink.
More than 90 stallholders were there selling a very broad range of produce from fruit and vegetables to pies and pasties – and much more. Bright sunshine made ice cream, local beers and cider popular and around midday there were long queues for duck wraps, burgers, bangers and barbecued street food.
The event also featured free cooking demonstrations, workshops and talks by presenters from the local community including Stefano and Rachael from Olive and Rosie in North Street, Tom Brazier of Brazier Coffee Roasters in Tonedale and from school chef Steve Fowell who won the regional final of the School Caterer of the Year competition in January. Steve is chef of Mendip Green Primary School in Worle. Odette’s tearoom hosted a practical demonstration of ‘The Art of Food – Eating with the Eyes’ to illustrate the value of food presentation.
Members of Wellington Rotary Club manned a stall selling packs of vegetables donated by local grower Ken Coles. Proceeds will go to the club’s charities. Ken Coles also displayed two of his tractors – a huge state-of-the-art model and a vintage tractor for children to ‘drive’.
Alongside the business of food there was face-painting for children, a display of garden furniture, an introduction to Bhangra Indian dance by the owners of Taunton’s Guddi and Kikki Indian restaurant and Pantango provided steel drum rhythm out on High Street.
The event coincided with Wellington Farmers’ Market and regular traders seemed very busy throughout the day. Local retailers, too, reported that trade for them was brisk.
Organisers Sarah and Beth Milner Simonds said, “We’re delighted with the day. The sun is wonderful and the town centre seems extremely busy. It’s going well!” With the success of the event assured, the town can now look forward to next year’s festival as a certainty on the annual calendar. Wellington’s reputation as a town where fine local produce is showcased has been enhanced yet again.