Bolton’s fantastic Food and Drink Festival was launched in spectacular style at the town’s newest leisure attraction.
Sponsors, local business people and top chefs gathered at the newly-opened Vaults at the Market Place shopping centre to hear exciting details of this year’s event, which is organised by Bolton Council, in association with Aldi.
Celebrity chefs James Martin, John Torode and Michael Caines will join Great British Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain to give cookery demos at the festival over the August bank holiday.
The subterranean Vaults are part of an ambitious redevelopment of the Market Place.
And this year the Vaults will host wine tasting sessions from wine experts Oz Clarke and Kate Goodman, as well as some regional chef cookery demos.
Top chefs Robert Owen Brown, Sean Wilson and Aiden Byrne are just some of the chefs who will be sharing their cookery skills in free demonstrations in the Vaults.
Robert, who was behind the Mark Addy restaurant, said “It is one of the premier events in the whole country. The Vaults are amazing - what’s going on here is a fantastic use of space and I’m looking forward to doing some demos here.”
Bolton Market will continue to host regional chef cookery demos on Friday and Saturday.
Already, restaurants including Prezzo and Nando’s have taken up residence in the Vaults, with other big names to be announced soon. A nine screen cinema is also due to open in the complex upstairs later in the year.
More than 200,000 visitors attended the food and drink festival last year to watch the chefs in action and sample a huge variety of cuisine from all over the UK and the world. It has become the premier event in the North West.
Leader of Bolton Council, Cllr Cliff Morris, said: “The festival goes from strength to strength and we are all excited about 2016.
“It is fantastic that we are able to launch such a prestigious event in such amazing surroundings – the Vaults are a superb addition to Bolton town centre and fit perfectly with the festival.
“We are working together to showcase the best of Bolton and make this year’s festival again one to remember.”
Tim Vaughan, chief executive of the Moorgarth group which owns the Market Place, said he was delighted to be involved with the festival and that the Vaults were to become an integral part of this year’s event.
The festival’s headline sponsor is Aldi, which has recently opened a huge distribution depot at the Logistics North site in Over Hulton.
Other sponsors are University of Bolton, Market Place Shopping Centre, Stateside Foods and Willmott Dixon.
Partners include: Arts Council; Bolton College; Bolton Market; KRO; Octagon Theatre; Slattery, and Worsley Park Marriott Hotel and Country Club.
Tickets for the celebrity chef demos and the special events will go on sale at the end of May.
For updates visit www.boltonfoodanddrinkfestival.com
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