Tag Archives: accrington

Sweet plans for town’s annual food festival

Plans are well underway for this year’s Accrington Food Festival – and this year’s event looks set to be sweeter than ever.

Formerly known as Lancashire Food Festival, this year the newly rebranded Accrington Food and Drink Festival will be a one-day event designed to showcase the area’s best food and drink.

Supporting farmers and independent traders, the festival – now in its 18th year – will entice hungry crowds in with a host of culinary surprises, from freshly made pies and black puddings to healthy juices and colourful cakes.

This year, Hyndburn Leisure has appointed marketing company Scott Dawson Advertising to organise the annual food festival on a three-year contract to turn it into a sustainable event. Work already completed by SDA has included the design of a brand new logo to launch this year’s event.

Managing director Murray Dawson said: “We’re proud to be the driving force behind this year’s Accrington Food Festival – it’s going to be bigger and better than ever. We’ve worked hard for many years to win this contract and we’re giving it our all to make it a wonderful event for everyone.”

SDA hopes to unite all of the town’s independent retailers, bars, restaurants, cafes, pubs and street food specialists to make it a celebration of Accrington.

Kirsty Lauder, who works for Accrington Market Online through SDA and is helping to organise the festival said: “Here in Hyndburn we have a population of 87,000 and we’ve set out with big goals to attract more than 4,000 people to this year’s food festival.

“We know everything that’s great about Accrington and the wider area – there is just so much fantastic produce available so it’s our job to handpick the very best and show it off. We have an enormous passion for shopping local and hopefully it will be infectious!

Organisers say the decision to pack all of the activity into a single day, Saturday 6 June, rather than running the festival across an entire weekend was designed to make sure visitors, exhibitors and sponsors all get the most from the event.

Last year celebrated TV cook and Sunday Times magazine columnist Gizzi Erskine was the special guest at the food festival – watch her talking about Accrington here:

It’s not too late to get involved – limited spaces are still available for exhibitors and sponsors. Contact sue@scottdawson.co.uk, call 01282 426 846 or visit www.accringtonfoodfestival.co.uk for more information and follow @AccringtonFood on Twitter for the latest news.

From The Voice to the Ballroom: all the action from Town Hall’s first wedding fayre

A teenage singing sensation entertained crowds at Accrington Town Hall’s first ever wedding fayre fresh from an appearance on BBC One’s The Voice.

Harris Hameed, 17, made a surprise guest turn at the fayre which celebrated a full refurbishment of the Town Hall’s Ballroom to become East Lancashire’s newest wedding reception venue.

The teenager from Leeds, who is still in contact with the BBC talent show’s star judge will.i.am, said it was a fantastic event and he was delighted to be able to perform.

The wedding fayre saw more than 500 people flock to the Town Hall to see the revamped facilities, including two new bars, a fully sprung dancefloor and colour effect lighting.

They sampled food, favours and more from 26 exhibitors from across the region – including the Mitali Restaurant, who stepped in at the last minute to supply halal food after another caterer was forced to drop out due to an emergency.

Charlotte Edmondson from Huncoat queued from 8.30am to be the first to bag £500 off her wedding reception after hearing on Facebook that the first 10 bookings on the day would receive an exclusive discount.

She is engaged to marry Ashley Lockley who is due to travel to Cyprus with the Royal Regiment of Scotland.

Andrea Carol from Cake of Dreams said: “It’s been very well attended, we’ve had a lot of enquiries and some sales too – the best fayre we’ve ever been to!”

Nabila Anwar from Bee’s Boutique, the Asian bridal wear specialist who sponsored the event and organised one of two catwalk shows, said: “What an amazing event! Very well organised. The turnout was fantastic and we’ve had four orders.”

The fayre’s Hollywood meets Bollywood theme saw a second fashion show courtesy of Accrington bridal shop Anne Whittaker.

Other performers at the event included Accrington acoustic singer Alex Birtwell – who also compered the event – Bollywood artist Kiran and swing singer Josh Hindle.

Kerry Smith, Cultural Services Manager at Hyndburn Leisure, said: “The fayre was a lovely mix of English and Asian fusion – everybody left with a smile on their faces.”

Graham Jones, MP for Hyndburn, said: “The point of the refurbishment was to make the prestigious Town Hall more appealing to the public and this wonderful event proved we’ve achieved that.”

The Mayor of Hyndburn, Cllr Munsif Dad said: “The Ballroom has been refurbished to a very high standard and this wonderful event saw businesses coming together to encourage local people to use local suppliers. It’s the ideal venue for weddings and special occasions.”

Julie O’Hara from Barbara Kay’s, one of the event exhibitors, said: “It’s great for Accrington to see the Town Hall come to life once again and two cultures coming together. This puts Accrington on the weddings map for the future. It was one of the first Asian catwalk shows I’d seen and it was just wonderful.”

Louise Woodcock, sales manager at the Mercure Dunkenhalgh Hotel said: “This venue is fantastic. It’s great to have healthy competition locally and we can support each other by providing accommodation to couples who book their wedding receptions here.”

Jim Saron from Bailey’s Menswear and vice president of the Hyndburn Chamber of Trade said: “For a first time event it was very good indeed – a beautiful building and a great turnout of more than 500 people attending.”

The wedding fayre was organised by marketing agency Scott Dawson Advertising, who have also produced a brochure to promote The Ballroom as a wedding venue.

Murray Dawson, managing director of Scott Dawson Advertising, said: “The fayre was a great team effort from SDA, a lot of people worked hard to make sure everything ran smoothly and everyone got the most from it. We’ll be organising other events in Accrington throughout this year to continue to boost civic pride.”

Exhibitors showcased flowers, vintage cars, cakes, table dressings, footwear, catering, stationery, accommodation, henna hand painting, entertainment and photography.

For more information go to www.accringtontownhall.co.uk or www.facebook.com/accringtontownhall

SDA to give town’s traders a Christmas boost

Accrington’s town centre is set for a festive boost after Chamber of Trade members and SDA joined forces to launch this year’s Christmas flyer.

Ray Astley, Zain Kiyani, Rob Grigorjevs and Cllr Clare Cleary

The project follows the success of a 2013 Christmas leaflet drop which saw some businesses enjoy a 50% upturn in trade in the lead-up to the festive period.

Now, traders have taken even more of an active role in Accrington’s December festivities by helping to organise special Christmas events too.

A total of 45,000 Christmas flyers have been designed and printed by SDA in conjunction with Hyndburn Council.

Hyndburn’s 36,000 homes will receive a copy of the flyer through their letterboxes, while each of the borough’s schools will also receive copies to send home with pupils.

Leisure centres and libraries will also be stocked up with the flyer, which features around 50 Accrington shops and services as well as information on how to shop online at Accrington Market for collection or delivery.Xmas flyer Burtons

Hyndburn Chamber of Trade members Jim Saron from Bailey’s Menswear, Julie O’Hara from Barbara Kay’s and Raymond Astley from Archway Footwear are helping to organise two events taking in December.

Saturday 13 December will see Broadway transformed for a Wonderful Winter Fayre, with free mulled wine, chestnuts and mince pies as well as children’s entertainment, rides, choir and jazz band.

The following Saturday, 20 December, there will be a pipe band, family fun and Christmas markets in the town centre, while Santa will be giving away cuddly toys and sweets in the Arndale Centre from 12 noon until 3pm.

The festive fun kicks off on Thursday 27 November with fireworks and a performance by Britain’s Got Talent’s Jai McDowall for the Christmas Lights Switch On event, while Santa’s Grotto in the Market Hall opens every weekend from Saturday 6 December.

Accy banner

Zain Kiyani, centre manager for Accrington Arndale shopping centre, said: “We can’t wait to see children’s faces light up at the exciting festive events we have lined up as a town. Here at the Arndale Centre there’s free parking all year round, late night shopping and a brand new Blue Inc store opening too.

“We’re all working together to round off a great year for Accrington.”

For up-to-the-minute news follow @AccringtonShops on Twitter and Facebook.