Bake Off finalist and CBeebies star to join line up of new Sunderland food festival

Baker Steven Carter Bailey is to join in the first Scrantastic Food Festival in Houghton.
Baker Steven Carter Bailey is to join in the first Scrantastic Food Festival in Houghton.

A food festival is getting ready to serve up its first course later this month.

No reservations are needed to join the crowds at the Scrantastic Family Food Festival, which will be held in Houghton Friday, May 17, to Sunday, May 19.

The menu over the three-day event hosted at The Broadway and in Rectory Park, includes cookery demonstrations, food stalls, a continental market, free family entertainment, food themed activities including street theatre, plus a funfair.

Among those taking to the demonstration kitchen to share their culinary skills and easy to follow healthy recipes with the audiences will be celebrity chefs and media personalities Sunderland's own Stacie Stewart - How to Lose Weight Well on Saturday, Steven Carter Bailey, a 2017 finalist in the Great British Bake Off on the Sunday, and Katy Ashworth from CBeebies, also on Sunday.

CBebbies star Katy Ashworth is set to be part of the celebrations.

CBebbies star Katy Ashworth is set to be part of the celebrations.

Chief executive of Sunderland City Council, Patrick Melia said: “We are continually looking to develop our events programme which brings visitors and income into our city, and showcases Sunderland as a place where people can come to enjoy a regular programme of top class cultural, sports and entertainment activities.

"When we ask people what kind of new events they'd like to see in Sunderland food festivals are often suggested, so to be able to bring two to the city in the space of a couple of months is fantastic.

"Hopefully 'Scrantastic' in Houghton this month will whet people's appetites for the Sunderland Food and Drink Festival being held in the city centre from Friday, June 21, to Sunday June 23."

"We are absolutely delighted to have so many celebrity chefs signed up for both food festival weekends, and hope people get the dates in their diaries to come along with their friends and families to enjoy.”

Among the headline acts appearing at the Sunderland Food and Drink Festival, will be Michelin-starred chef Jean-Christophe Novelli, CBeebies Katy Ashworth and television chef and author Dean Edwards.

Keel Square, High Street West, Market Square and Blandford Street will be home to a variety of stalls offering local produce from local traders, street food and speciality food and drinks plus music and street entertainment.

Stacie Stewart will appear at the Scrantastic festival.

Stacie Stewart will appear at the Scrantastic festival.

The heart of the event will be Keel Square, where a marquee will house free live cookery demonstrations and master classes throughout the weekend.

The event is free to attend and is funded and organised by Sunderland City Council, Sunderland BID and RR Events who specialise in delivering large outdoor events including many food festivals and is running both festivals.

Tony Walsh, managing director, said: “We already run regular continental markets in Sunderland, so we’re excited to help them grow into two full festivals.

"There’ll be a huge variety of food and drink to taste and buy, plus the chance to see celebrity chefs at work.”

Full details of the programme and the stalls will be announced closer to the events.

Details will also be added to www.seeitdoitsunderland.co.uk/SundFoodFest and www.seeitdoitsunderland.co.uk/scrantastic.