Celebrity chef set to appear at Seaham Food Festival next month

Television favourite Rosemary Shrager is looking forward to cooking for the crowds at Seaham Food Festival this summer.

Wednesday, 23rd June 2021, 2:37 pm
Seaham Food Festival in 2019

The popular festival will make its welcome return to the coast on Saturday, August 7 and Sunday, August 8 following a break last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Foodies can look forward to tasty treats from around 100 traders and producers, mouth-watering demonstrations from famous faces in the cookery world and fun for all the family to get involved in.

The free festival is a key part of Durham County Council’s festival and events programme, reflecting the local authority’s commitment to cultural-led regeneration. As well as bringing communities together, festivals will play a vital role in supporting the region’s economic recovery from the impact of the pandemic.

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Rosemary Shrager.

More than 15,000 people attended the festival in 2019. It is hoped that the increased footfall this year will support the recovery of local businesses, especially in the hospitality and retail sector, which has been hit hard over the last year.

The council will continue to follow Government guidance up to and throughout the festival to ensure the safety of everyone attending.

Cooking stalwart Rosemary will be giving cookery demonstrations in the outdoor theatre on Saturday. Rosemary endeared herself to the nation when she took part in ‘I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here’ where she proved she could cook anything, anywhere.

Rosemary said: “I am delighted to be spending time on the County Durham coast this summer. It has been such a difficult year for everyone so I cannot wait to visit Seaham Food Festival and take part in some cookery demonstrations with the visitors.

Mike Bartley

“It’s also really exciting to see what the local traders and producers have on offer and to be out and about enjoying fresh fare and fine flavours from all over.”

Also taking part in the festival on both days will be County Durham’s very own Masterchef semi-finalist Mike Bartley, from Bishop Auckland. It was a visit to Bishop Auckland Food Festival, also organised by Durham County Council, that inspired Mike to get involved in Masterchef 2021 and now, the 35-year-old hopes to make a career out of cooking as a result.

After appearing on the popular programme, Mike set up a food blog – Djam Kitchen – where he shares his passion about using local produce and foraged ingredients in recipes.

“I am so excited to be cooking for the people of County Durham at Seaham Food Festival,” said Mike. “It’s incredible to think that just two years ago, a visit to Bishop Auckland Food Festival gave me the courage to apply for Masterchef, and now I’m one of the chefs taking part at Seaham. It’s a real honour.

“Hopefully, visiting Seaham Food Festival will help inspire more future chefs. I’m really looking forward to being able to speak to people and hopefully encourage them towards using local produce in their own meals.”

In addition to the traders and cookery demonstrations, there will be children’s activities, street theatre and live music. The events will also be spread out to help keep people safe and encourage social distancing.

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