The best UK festivals and events: August 2016

Check out our round-up of the best UK food festivals and events in May 2016, from a seafood festival in Dorset to a foodie celebration in the Yorkshire Dales



One of the hottest food events of the year, Wilderness festival in Oxfordshire combines the off-beat fun of the modern British music festival (woodland walks, feasts around the campfire, wild swimming, and, of course, a top-notch music line-up) with seriously good food: join one of the long table banquets to enjoy fine wines and bespoke menus from Virgilio Martinez, Skye Gyngell and Raymond Blanc. Or sit in one of the festival’s beautifully decorated ‘field restaurant’ tents – try Moro’s vibrant Mediterranean dishes, a seasonal menu of zucchini blossoms, crab and prosecco jelly with summer berries in the Petersham Nurseries tent or British classics such as heritage beetroot salad and Dorset Blue lobster in the HIX tent. Some of the country’s top chefs will also be hosting chefs’ tables – cosy up to Christian Puglisi, Robin Gill of The Dairy, Tomos Parry of Kitty Fisher’s and Lee Westcott from the Typing Room. With appearances from many other restaurants – including Quality Chop House, Duck & Waffle and Maze Sushi – this festival is a one-stop trip around some of Britain’s finest restaurants.

4 – 7 August, Oxfordshire; wildernessfestival.com

Rockfish Dartmouth Crab Festival

Imagine about 400 people enjoying dressed South Devon crab on long banqueting tables in the British sunshine and you’ve got the idea behind this southwest crab fest. Supported by rail operator GWR, it has more than a hint of summer seaside fun about it, plus star turns from Mitch Tonks and Angela Hartnett. Children can get involved in crabbing competitions and the pros will show you how crab cracking is really done. If you just want to taste the stuff, stop by one of the street food stalls and grab a crab roll or a seafood taco.

7 August, Dartmouth; rockfishevents.co.uk

The Big Feastival

A star-studded line up, with the likes of Mark Ronson and Kaiser Chiefs sharing the spotlight with Jamie Oliver, Raymond Blanc and Tom Kerridge, this Cotswolds festival caters as well for music lovers as it does for food lovers. Well-loved street food trucks will be there to offer sustenance after dancing the night away – try Le Bun’s French-American burger twists, The Cauldron’s epic sandwiches and Le Swine’s legendary bacon butties – or head to the NEFF Big Kitchen where award-winning chefs Jose Pizarro and Thomasina Miers will demonstrate what they can do in the kitchen. Wellness talks, masterclasses and The Allotment Project will also be part of the festivities.

26-28 August, Kingham; thebigfeastival.com

Bury St Edmunds

Highlighting some of the rich larder of foods currently being produced in the east, this event sees Bury St Edmunds’ town centre transformed, with an urban beach, a mini farm, farmers’ market and over 100 food and drink stalls. Graze on snacks from producers such as Wild Game Meat, Corkers Crisps and La Flamenco churros, while Norfolk Apple Juice, Blands Ciders and The English Spirit Distillery will take care of quenching your thirst. Head to the demonstration area – headlined by Galton Blackiston and James Tanner – if you want to watch one of the festival’s masterclasses. Or sign the kids up for cupcake icing and fairground rides.

28 – 29 August, Bury St Edmunds; burystedmundsfestivals.com

Clitheroe Food Festival

This family-friendly festival celebrates the best of Lancashire’s food and drink producers, and the chefs who cook with it. Try artisan produce from Park Farm Shop, Shirleys Pies and The Chocolate Café, street food from The Real Thai Pie Company and Cunliffe Hog Roast. Sign up for tastings and talks on chocolate, cocktails, wine and beer. Take budding mini-masterchefs along to a kid-friendly Culinary Food Academy. Or just sit back with a pint of local ale or cider pondering another fine day out in the Ribble Valley.

13 August, Clitheroe; clitheroefoodfestival.com

Afternoon Tea Week

Celebrate one of Britain’s best-loved traditions with a whole week dedicated to tea, sandwiches and scones. Try The Ritz’ special new cake, spruce up your skills with an exclusive tea tasting masterclass at Harrods’ Georgian restaurant, or treat yourself to afternoon tea at one of our favourite afternoon tea spots in London – think mini toasties in velvet pink surroundings at Sketch, an Asian afternoon tea up The Shard, or a traditional Claridge’s afternoon tea. Want to branch out of London? Go for Georgian splendour at The Royal Crescent in Bath, Yorkshire twists on afternoon tea at The Spiced Pear, or a gin-infused tea at One Square in Edinburgh.

8 – 14 August afternoontea.co.uk

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