There is something cooking in the ‘Newtown kitchen’!
For a third year, the Newtown Food Festival has provided a vibrant showcase for great local produce and the independent businesses which are at the heart of the revitalisation of this historic market town
There has been a market operating in Newtown since medieval days and since 1870 in the Town’s market hall. A recent refurbishment has brought new life to this historic community space. This year’s food festival embraced the new Glanhafren market hall, connecting it with the main festival site by pedestrianising the High Street
It is fitting that the refurbishment has been driven by the Mid Wales Food and Land Trust under a “Local Food, Local Futures” banner. This mantra is never more clearly ‘lived’ than at Cultivate ‘… a worker/producer cooperative dedicated to building a localised sustainable food economy …’
The first weekend in September is now firmly in the local calendar for the Food Festival … this year there were more exhibitors than ever and with the sun unexpectedly making an appearance, a huge number of visitors basked in the warmth of the weather and the welcome
With our own plans to open The High Street Delicatessen taking shape, the weekend was the perfect opportunity to let people know about our 13 October opening … and for us to meet with many of the local producers whose fantastic local goods we hope will be filling our shelves
We spent the weekend alongside the gorgeous (Nicky) Doodlebakes, whose beautiful hand crafted Royal-Iced biscuits and cakes are so popular with children and parents alike. Just nearby, Cultivate volunteers brought delicious homegrown vegetables out of the Market Hall and into the hands of loyal and established customers. Even Richard Edwards, the Mayor of Newtown and Llanllwchaiarn was helping out behind the counter!
You had to be quick to get your hands on the in-demand sourdough alchemy of Andy’s Bread. Andy Wright is the hardest-working baker in Wales but we are really hoping that we will be able to stock some of the breads he crafts from locally-sourced Felin Ganol flours
Other local favourites included Kerry Vale Vineyard, Hilltop Honey – a local success story that is going national – and Morgans Brew Tea … hearing Geoff and Lee with their “are you a tea drinker” line always brings a smile to the face
As we plan a tempting cheese counter for our customers, it was great to add Caws Cenarth to our list of potential suppliers along with existing favourite Snowdonia Cheese Company, who had already seduced us with the famous Black Bomber cheddar
It feels like there is a foodie movement at work at the heart of Newtown, which we are really excited to be joining. Having worked alongside these hard-working local producers for 2 years selling cakes from The Schoolroom Kitchen, we are thrilled to be adding a new ‘shop window’ for their craft
Long may the Food Festival provide a focus for Newtown as a historic market town with food at its heart and in its future