Bolton College is backing this year’s Bolton’s Food and Drink Festival.
It has joined property developer Bluemantle and family bakers Warburtons to support this year’s event, taking place from Friday, August 26 to Monday, August 29.
The festival, which has attracted big name celebrities like Gino D’Acampo, the Hairy Bikers, and James Martin, has become a firm fixture on the foodie calendar.
Leader of Bolton Council, Councillor Cliff Morris, said: "It's our sixth Food and Drink Festival and we're really pleased that we have another sponsor on board. This is a real testament to the quality of the festival and the reputation it’s building.
“Last year we had an estimated 75,000 visitors and we’re hoping that there will be even more this year. The backing of these key sponsors is also down to the relationship we have developed with businesses and other major organisations in Bolton and the surrounding area."
The college, on Deane Road, is one of the north west’s largest providers of vocational training and further education.
Bolton College Principal, Marie Gilluley, added: “With 50 catering and hospitality courses on offer at Bolton College, and excellent new facilities at our Deane Road site, we’re rapidly becoming a first choice for learners looking to pursue a passion in this ever popular field. It was a natural decision for us to support the 2011 Bolton Food and Drink Festival, which promises to be an exciting event for the town.”
Bluemantle, a north west based property investment and development business, is one of the joint venture partners behind the £148m Church Wharf development in the town centre.
Bluemantle’s Chief Executive, Mark Caldwell, said: “This is the second year running that we have sponsored Bolton’s popular Food and Drink festival and we are very pleased to be associated with this event once again, which has proven to be extremely successful.
“Our proposed redevelopment of Church Wharf together with our plans for the regeneration site at Horwich Loco Works means that we are committed to improving the future of Bolton and this festival is a great way of bringing the community together as well as attracting new visitors to the area.”
Leading bakery firm Warburtons was established in a grocery shop in Bolton in 1876 by Thomas and Ellen Warburton.
Chairman of Warburtons, Jonathan Warburton, said: “Our headquarters and two of our bakeries are located just yards from this original site and therefore, food in Bolton will always remain very important to myself and my cousins. We are delighted to be sponsoring this event and believe it will be a great success.”
Bolton’s sixth Food and Drink Festival will be opened by two-Michelin-starred chef Michael Caines. There will be live demos in a cookery theatre in Victoria Square, by Michael and celebrity chefs Hairy Bikers, Gino D’Acampo and James Martin. A whole host of top chefs are also making appearances in the Market Place Shopping Centre and Bolton Market. The public can watch these demos for free.
A speciality market featuring local, regional and specialist traders will be open from 10am until 5pm throughout the festival.
There are special offers on parking - Topp Way multi-storey car park, on Bath Street, will be £1.50 all day and Deane Road multi-storey car park will charge £2 for four hours.
Pay and display car parks managed by NCP and on-street parking are also free on Sunday.
A handful of tickets for cookery demonstrations for the celebrity chefs are still available and can be purchased from the Albert Halls box office on 01204 334400 or online via the Food and Drink Festival website.
To keep up to date with the latest festival news, log on to the website, visit Facebook and search for Bolton Food and Drink Festival or search for #boltonfoodanddrinkfestival on Twitter.