Families enjoy the final day of Sunderland Food and Drink Festival

Sunderland continued its showcase of food and drink in the city centre on as the finale of a three-day event which organisers said was a clear success.

By faye.dixon
Sunday, 23 June, 2019, 16:15
CBeebies Kate Ashworth entertained at Sunderland Food Festival on Sunday, June 23

The public enjoyed Jean-Christophe Novelli’s food demonstation and cocktail masterclasses on the Saturday, with Sunday seeing CBeebies’ Katy Ashworth and Masterchef’s Dean Edwards entertain.

Children crowded the stage to see Katy Ashworth sing and dance and it wasn’t long before the kids – and many of the parents – joined in.

TV chef Dean Edwards demonstrated at the Sunderland Food Festival on Sunday, June 23

Live music intervals and an array of cultural food to choose from kept everyone busy and the event was a hit among parents.

Janet Clarke, 49, who works at University of Sunderland, said: “We went to the Tall Ships and we’ve been to a few little events but nothing food based before. We’d absolutely come to something like this again.”

Martin Ridgewell, 43, a radiology worker, noticed the lack of seagulls hanging around because of Aristotle the hawk who was hired to deter them from the food. He said: “I thought were would be loads of seagulls about everywhere but obviously not.”

The cookery theatre was packed with fans watching Dean Edwards cook signature dishes at 12pm and 2pm.

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Busy crowds headed to High Street West for Sunderland Food Festival on Sunday, June 23

Among questionnable impressions of Lorraine Kelly and the lack of coriander for one of his dishes as Jean-Christophe Novelli had used it all, the demonstrations were great fun.

Fans got the chance to meet Dean after the show.

Emilea Daniel, 23, who works at Portland Academy in Sunderland, said: “We met one of Dean’s friends yesterday and he told us to come and see him today so we did.” Her boyfriend is a chef and they bought one of Dean’s cookery books and had it signed.

Dean Edwards was thrilled to meet his fans. He said: “It’s my first time in Sunderland. From what I’ve seen so far it’s a beautiful city. Everyone’s been so warm and welcoming.

“The turn out was great; everyone standing around watching and it’s great to see the interaction between people.

“I’m obviously on the stage cooking but there were a lot of questions come from the crowd aswell and everyone seemed to be into it. A lot of smiling faces which obviously makes my job a hell of a lot easier.”