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One of the major annual events in our lovely town is the Broadstairs Food Festival, which takes place each autumn in Victoria Gardens overlooking Viking Bay. This year the Festival is on from 30th September to 2nd October.
The Festival site is a lovely spot, with fresh sea breezes wafting aromatic scents of tasty Kentish produce across the site, as visitors browse their way round the many stalls and demonstration tents. A glance away from any of the stall displays reveals stunning views of the bay and you can be on the beach itself in 2 minutes, or in one of the many local restaurants and cafes that line the shore, whenever you are ready for a change of pace.
Bunting fluttering in the breeze, tunes floating across from the adjacent bandstand, foodie treats from over 100 stalls with the Festival bar and restaurant tent buzzing with activity and plenty of treats, you’re sure to have a good time at the Food Festival.
It is food and drink heaven for the full three days – and what’s more it’s free to enter!
Ticketed Festival events around town include a Champagne Cocktail Party at the newly opened and very smart Yarrow Hotel and Taste Workshops, a Spanish wine and tapas evening at knockout local tapas bar, Albarino, a seafood supper at the trendy Belgian styled Fish and Beer restaurant/bar and masterclasses in cheese pairing and gin tasting (these are separate events, naturally!).
Free events include wine tasting at our well loved local independent wine merchants The Bottleneck on the Sunday evening.
See the Festival website’s ‘around town’ listings
Demonstrations by well known chefs will include:
The Guardian’s Catherine Phipps, who has written “The Pressure Cooker Cookbook” packed full of one pot pressure cooker recipes and the rather splendid “Chicken” which has over 200 recipes for the bird, beyond the classic roast. Anyone who has to feed a family every day and wants to keep things interesting will find Catherine a font of knowledge for keeping your culinary life fresh and fun.
Also baking queen, Lucy Cufflin, who makes imaginative and delicious cooking and baking easy for even the least confident of cooks to produce. Lucy has written Lucy’s Foods and Lucy’s Bakes and runs a popular deli, also called Lucy’s Food in her home town of Leicester.
Take a peek at the exhibitors list and start planning your menus now – if you’re here for the full three days you’ll be glad you have booked to stay with Beeches Holiday Lets in Broadstairs. You’ll be close to the action and have the luxury of a fully equipped kitchen and dining area so you can really make the most of all the wonderful Kentish produce you won’t be able to resist picking up. Foodie inspiration is guaranteed here at this unique event!
Eat out while you’re here of course, but eat at home too, relax and enjoy all your home from home comforts in your Broadstairs holiday let.
The Festival organisers make it clear that featuring quality local produce is their priority. Biddenden and Harbourne vineyards, Cheesemakers of Canterbury and Winterdale Cheese, a host of local brewers, including the teeny ones like the Four Candles brew pub, artisanal and fancy backed goods, game, nuts, herbs, scandalously good chocolate (that closeness to Belgium plays well for East Kent chocolate you know), chutneys, pickles and preserves and more. However you’ll also find surprises like Thai and Indian food by local kitchens, fresh loose tea and locally roasted coffee.
Get in touch soon if you want to be here for the Festival – we’d love to provide your accommodation to make your stay Broadstairs the best it can be!
With around 100 stalls of delicious food and drink and associated activity on the seafront every October, the Broadstairs Food Festival is basically foodie heaven.
The event is free to enter but bring your wallet and a shopping bag – and come hungry – you are going to want to indulge while you are here!
Expect local favourites like Little Stour Orchard, Wyatt and Jones, Bessies Vintage Tea Parlour, Nethergong Nurseries, Lola and Company, Ramsgate Brewery, Goupie Confectionary and many, many more…. with additional scrummy international flavours from the likes of The German Sausage Company and Taste of Vietnam adding to the mix.
Click here for the full list of exhibitors.
The packed event programme is worth scrutinising in advance to plan your time:
As an example – Broadstairs very own Chetna Makan, from Great British Bake Off, will be teaching visitors how to make two very special dishes – one sweet and one savoury – in a ticketed session which will include plenty of time for questions and answers on the Saturday at 10:30am. Last year Chetna’s demonstration, her first live cooking demo ever, was interrupted by Paul Hollywood – to everyone’s great amusement! This year’s Cooking with Chetna session is certain to be a treat, once again, for those who can get tickets.
If you can’t be here for the Festival itself you can still get a taste and be a Festival supporter by getting tickets for the Festival Gala Dinner on 29th September, or the Rioja Masterclass, with tapas, at the heavenly Albarino on 30th September, or the Seafood Supper at Wyatt and Jones on 1st October…or….
OR… perhaps you just want to get here early and make the most of these and the other advance events AS WELL AS attending the Festival … well who could blame you. That’s certainly the way to make the absolute most of what’s on offer at this very special food focussed time in the town.
If you don’t want to miss a moment of this fabulous Food Festival – or the build up – get in touch now to book your accommodation with us. We’ll be happy to give you a comfy spot to lay your head and a base for all your foodie adventures during the Festival – including a well equipped kitchen where you can cook up a storm for yourself and your party using all the top quality ingredients you’ll be gathering on your grazing tour!
Broadstairs Food Festival delivers two of the highlights of the Broadstairs calendar. The main event happens in October on the seafront and at Easter they hold their Spring Fair at Pierremont Park in the heart of the town.
The Spring Fair in 2015 is on Sat 4th – Mon 6th April.
Expect over 50 stallholders selling mostly Kentish fare but with some delicacies from further afield as well.
The full list of exhibitors for 2015 is listed here.
As Kent is known as the Garden of England the county naturally is a food lover’s delight. Come and enjoy the fruits and produce of our fields as well as fish and shellfish from the surrounding sea and some of the best quality meat you will likely ever eat – both game and ethically farmed. Sample scrumptious baked goods and artisan coffee from Lola and Company , browse the real ales from small local breweries and learn about some of the local micropubs from the local ale enthusiasts, if that’s your thing. Veggies and indeed those with any kind of dietary restriction are sure to be as delighted as everyone else. The organisers do a great job of ensuring the stallholders between them offer a wide range of goodies that will please all tastes.
Graze for the day around the park, enjoy musical entertainment, find a comfortable bench to rest a while under the trees with perhaps a tray of something extra tasty in your lap.
The Broadstairs Food Festival is non-profit event run by volunteers who are all passionate about our town and good food – their friendly faces and commitment to make your experience one to remember make the whole day out extra special.
The main event in October takes place October 2nd – 4th in Victoria Gardens adjacent to the bandstand.
Don’t forget to book your Broadstairs holiday let with us for your visit to the fair either at Easter or in October. Food Festival time offers a great focus for a break by the sea.
We are excited about 2017 and as the holiday season will soon be starting up again we thought we’d use this post to tell you about some of the upcoming events, as well as things to do and places to go, for your perfect English seaside holiday on the East Kent coast this year.
Broadstairs is set in the heart of the Isle of Thanet on the East Kent coast of England, between the two larger towns of Margate and Ramsgate, all three of these traditional English seaside resort towns have sandy beaches and many amenities for holidaymakers. Many people say that Broadstairs is the jewel of Thanet and we are inclined to agree – the town is also known historically as Star of the Sea – after the ancient Star of the Sea shrine that was situated here in medieval times – on the site of what is now The Chapel (a very cool and quirky bar which is also a music venue and book shop.)
You can get here in just over an hour from London and yet many Londoners may not know the town, since the fast train service (HS1) from St Pancras is relatively new and it used to be a 2 hour journey by rail, which meant resorts in Sussex that were quicker to get to (Brighton and Hastings in particular) have tended to be better known, despite the fact that Thanet beaches are sandy and the area has so much else going for it it has, for many years, been less front of mind for Londoners, simply because it used to take that bit longer to get to. But with HS1 that is changing – fast.
Thanet is rapidly becoming more and more in vogue as a place to go. Tourist visitor numbers in 2016 were up around 30% on the year before. Broadstairs remains a quintessential traditional English seaside resort with golden arcs of sand, ice cream parlours, fish and chips, crazy golf a bandstand and formal gardens all a short stroll from each other in the centre of the town.
You can still get those slower trains, they leave from Victoria and if that’s closer for you you might prefer to come via that route which is also cheaper than the HS1. Driving here is generally an hour or so from South East London and up to two hours from other parts of the capital.
In 2017 look out for the following events (and see Visit Thanet for full listings for Broadstairs and the wider area):
- Broadstairs Blues Bash – #findyourblues 17 – 19 February.
- Broadstairs Food Festival Spring Fair – Easter weekend
- Looping the Loop Adventures in Performance – 23 April – 2 May
- Broadstairs Dickens Week – 17 – 23 June.
- Broadstairs Water Gala – 23 August
- Broadstairs Summer Sounds – family friendly concerts with top local talent at the bandstand in August, dates tbc
- Broadstairs Folk Week – 11 – 18 August
- Looping the Loop Adventures in Performance – autumn season and Festival in October – dates tbc.
- Broadstairs Food Festival 29 Sept – 1 October
Also check out:
- Thanet Coast Project for beach safaris and seal watching,
- Crampton Tower Museum and Dickens Museum in Broadstairs,
- The award winning historic costumed St Peter’s Village Tour (St Peter’s is just outside Broadstairs)
- Ramsgate Tunnels, see how people kept safe by living in tunnels during WWII in Ramsgate
- Dreamland – the original theme park, reinvented, with the world’s scenic railway and lots of special events
- Turner Contemporary – an world class gallery providing free exhibitions and events in the harbour at Margate
- Sea Searcher for boat trips
If your heart’s desire is simply to hang out on the beach and go for walks then cosy up in your comfortable Beeches Holiday Let at the end of the day, you’ll find lots of cliffs and beaches to enjoy – 26 miles of stunning Thanet coastline (seven golden sandy beaches in Broadstairs alone) will keep you happily exploring for as long as you want to be here.
We look forward to seeing you in Broadstairs 2017! Check availability for your preferred dates using the form on our homepage – and book soon to be sure to get the holiday accommodation you require.
Broadstairs has got a great community. The Information Kiosk overlooking Viking Bay and the RNLI shop are both manned by volunteers and many of the good things that happen here are only possible because of people giving up their time to do things they care about that they believe will be worthwhile. That strong community spirit is one of the things that make this a great place to live, work and visit.
The Broadstairs Town Team is a group of volunteers who do all kinds of good things for the town – from regular beach cleans and gardening groups to summer concerts and painting things that need it. Last month the Town Team unveiled a really nice new sign at Broadstairs railway station to welcome visitors when they arrive. You will be able to see it if you come to Broadstairs by train and take the exit from the ticket office.
The sign masthead uses the artwork that features in the Town Team mural at the bottom of the High Street – Broadstairs is spelt out in decorative letters with illustrations of different aspects of the town – from cavorting hooden horses to the beach and the wooden jetty! This design, by a local artist, was the winning submission in a competition the team ran in 2013 and has become iconic since being used for the mural.
Under the masthead you will find maps of Broadstairs town centre and also the wider area of Thanet as a whole, showing beaches and key points of interest and giving some historical context – did you know that Charles Dickens called Broadstairs “the freshest freest place”?
There is information on guided walks that you can take, including the Broadstairs Town Trail and the St Peter’s Village Tour.
A ‘Time Travel’ panel gives a timeline of Broadstairs’ history, from Viking times, when Horsa and Henghist arrived by Viking ship at what was later named Viking Bay, through to Dickens’ time and the visits made by Princess Victoria, before she became Queen, smugglers, the building of York Gate in 1540 and the wooden jetty, around a hundred years before that, to more recent highlights such as Oliver Postgate, creator of the Clangers, and the coming of HS1 high speed rail service from London.
Another panel gives information on the key events in Broadstairs’ calendar. From the New Years Day swim, to the Blues Bash in Feb, Easter Food Fair, Dickens Week, Water Gala, Folk Week, Wheels and Fins Festival and the main Food Festival in October.
Finally there’s a quirky image of Broadstairs Viking Bay, featuring a knitted seagull who appeared there last summer, knitted by local crafters, the Crafty Broads, as part of a “yarn bomb” event where they decorated the seafront with knitted seagulls, mermaids, starfish and other fun stuff – much to the delight of visitors and locals that week – it made a great display! This fun picture is shown with social media sharing buttons to encourage people to share their own fresh perspectives of the town on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram when they come here, with a special hashtag #thisisbroadstairs. Search on any of those social media platforms with that tag and you will find some great pictures that people have shared – showing lots of different views of the town. Why not join the online conversation about Broadstairs and add that tag to your own pictures when you come here?
The new sign seems to us a great way new addition to our town so we’d like to say well done to the Town Team for organising it and we encourage all our visitors to go and check it out.
If you haven’t been to Broadstairs yet and this article has intrigued you – use the form on our homepage to find out about availability of our lovely Broadstairs holiday lets, which are suitable for groups and families.