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Literature Festival Food & Drink

Food and Drink at The Times and The Sunday Times

Cheltenham Literature Festival
 

Dates: Friday 6 October – Sunday 15 October 2017

Venues: Montpellier Gardens, Cheltenham, UK

Website: www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/literature  

Book-lovers of all ages, including over 7,000 schoolchildren, will head to Cheltenham in October for the UK’s oldest literature festival, for ten days of literary celebration, discussion and debate. The diverse programme covers history, current affairs, visual art, sport, food, fashion, lifestyle, psychology, science and business as well as fiction, poetry and a Family programme packed with events and workshops for toddlers to teens.

Culinary stars speaking at the Festival include Nadiya Hussain, Nigella Lawson, Mary Berry, Tom Kerridge and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.

The Daffodil, a beautiful art deco former cinema is the new venue for the Festival’s food events. Gastronomic adventures around the globe include the taste of Japan with former Nobu head chef Scott Hallsworth; Catalonian tapas with Jose Pizarro; African dishes from rising star Lopè Ariyo from her new cookbook Hibiscus; Peruvian food from Martin Morales;  and Pakistani chef Sumayya Usmani accompanied by poetry and music.

Bringing the extraordinary experience of lunching at Claridge's to Cheltenham is the hotel’s Executive Chef Martyn Nail. Festival-goers can also enjoy brunch with David Hepworth or Marcus Brigstocke, lunch with Kirstie Allsopp, Miles Jupp and Henry Blofeld, afternoon tea with Princess Michael of Kent; and dinner with Wahaca founder Thomasina Miers.

Victoria Moore shares tips from The Wine Dine Dictionary and Damian Barr presents his popular A Book and Bottle while Joel Harrison and Neil Ridley give travel advice on where to find the best cocktail joints and beauty guru Liz Earle talks about her new book The Good Gut Guide over prosecco and nibbles at The Lucky Onion’s No 131. More travel-inspired events include afternoon tea with explorer Alastair Sawday and a musical journey through Scotland’s islands with a Scottish afternoon tea.

In the revamped Festival Village there will be a fantastic variety of street food traders and the Festival is working with Cheltenham-based Beefcake Events (www.beefcakeevents.co.uk) to manage the food offer on site.

Founder Oli Thomas said: “At Beefcake Events we’re extremely pleased to have been awarded the long-term catering contract for The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival. No matter the concept, Beefcake Events only partners with local, knowledgeable suppliers and passionate individuals who share our love for amazing ingredients using artisan baking methods and sustainable methods. Crucially, they must also be able to deliver the volumes required at a busy festival. Having grown up and also schooled in Cheltenham, it’s fantastic to be able to support the local Cheltenham community.”

Some of the food traders include: Mexican Food Co., Posh Burgers, Carvery, Carboni’s Hog Roast, Chicken & Haloumi Bar, Toasted Sandwiches, Oriental Noodles, Cornish Pasties, Barista Coffee & Cakes, Crepes & Waffles.

Free activities at the Festival

There is plenty for all ages to discover on site for free: brain teasers and live music, a daily Times crossword and a daily instalment of brainy soapbox-style talks. There’s the opportunity to swap books in the cosy outdoor lounge The Bookstand or see Festival-inspired art at the Gardens Gallery. New this year is the after-dark Festival Club at the centrally-placed Hotel du Vin for music, conversation and late-night literary revelry (weekends only). For one night only (Saturday 7 October) the Lit Crawl takes over the streets of Cheltenham for a fast-paced evening of quirky literary happenings.

The Den will be filled with free book-related activities for families on Saturdays and Sundays, from helping Maisy Mouse creator Lucy Cousins create a mural to a Harry Potter quiz and learning to draw animals with Abbie Cameron. In The Woodland Trust Wild Wood families can settle down in the picnic area while youngsters build a den, dress up, follow The Famous Five story trail, listen to storytellers and meet their favourite book characters.

Booking

To buy tickets on the first day of public booking (1pm on Wednesday September 6), create a Wish List in advance at cheltenhamfestivals.com/literature. Thereafter, book events online or by phone on 01242 850270. Booking for Cheltenham Festivals Members opens at 1pm on Wednesday 30 August.

Further information can be found at www.cheltenhamfestivals.com.

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