Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 22.33.35Tens of thousands of hungry food fans descended on County Durham for a bumper Bishop Auckland Food Festival 2016.

The two day event, the highlight of the areas culinary calendar, drew huge crowds as families flocked to taste the delicious dishes on offer from more than 150 local, regional and northern food and drink producers.

All of which provides a huge boost to the County Durham economy.

Cllr Neil Foster, the council’s cabinet member for economic regeneration, arts and culture, said: “Bishop Auckland Food Festival is a great event with a fantastic reputation that is worth more than £700,000 a year to the county.

“I was delighted to see so many people coming down to enjoy the food and the social atmosphere.”

BAFF is organised by Durham County Council in partnership with the Auckland Castle Trust and Bishop Auckland Town Council.

Held in the Market Place, Town Hall and grounds of Auckland Castle, this year’s annual showcase of the best in home-grown and handmade produce from County Durham and the wider region attracted 30,000 visitors.

Visitors enjoyed live cookery demonstrations, food and drink masterclasses, a pop-up restaurant and street entertainment.

And under bright, sometimes sunny skies, they delighted in enjoying food from the likes of Brown and Blonde bakery, Clucking Pig scotch eggs, The Crepe Escape, Fat Hippo burgers, Geordie bangers, Kathryn Brown Cupcakes and Lacey’s Cheese.

 
Other highlights included dishes and produce from Le Mini Macaron, Leaside Cheese Makers, The Mac Shac, More? artisan bakery, Northumbrian Smokehouse, Parlour Made, Round Green Farm Venison and Scream for Pizza.

While anyone who wasn’t yet stuffed had more than enough to choose from at the likes of SmokieDokies, Smoking Barbecue, Sue’s Bread, Tarte and Berry, Truly Tempting Chocolate, Wear Dale Cheese, Yorkshire Drizzle and Zapatista Burrito Bar.

As always the festival “Tipple Tent” area proved popular with beers, ciders, wines and spirits from firms including Black Paw, Darwin, Sonnet, Steam Machine and Yard of Ale breweries, Vin Van Voom, Santé bars, Masons Yorkshire Gin and Durham Gin.

Kate James, Durham County Council’s festival and events manager, said: “It’s been fantastic. We grow and improve year-on-year and to see so many people visit or come to trade, not just from the local community, but from far and wide, was wonderful.

“Thank you to all the families who came, to all the volunteers and to the people of Bishop Auckland for once again providing such a warm welcome to everyone.”