Foodies Festival returns to Hylands Park for tasty Chelmsford weekend

Chef Alex Webb at Foodies Festival

Chef Alex Webb at Foodies Festival - Credit: Foodies Festival

A fabulous three-day foodie festival is set to return to Essex this weekend with a tasty line-up of celebrity chefs and chart-topping music stars.

Foodies Festival, dubbed the 'Gastro-Glasto', will take place at Hylands Park, Chelmsford, from Friday, June 17 to Sunday, June 19.

The biggest touring gourmet food festival in the UK, the event will feature MasterChef champions, stars of The Great British Bake Off, and Michelin-starred chefs, as well as headline music acts such as Liberty X and Scouting For Girls.

Scouting For Girls will headline Foodies Festival in Chelmsford

Scouting For Girls will headline Foodies Festival in Chelmsford - Credit: Supplied by Foodies Festival

Foodies Festival director Sue Hitchen said: “We are delighted to be returning to Hylands Park this summer.

"The festival has become a meeting point for friends and family to enjoy a great weekend of delicious food, live music and fun.”

The Essex Festival of Food and Drink will run at Hylands Park over the same days and will be a part of the Foodies Festival event moving forward.

A spokesperson said: "We look forward to welcoming visitors to the bigger festival which will be a real celebration of quality food, drink and great chefs."


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Who’s cooking in the Chefs Theatre? 

Award-winning chefs and star bakers taking part this summer include Essex-based MasterChef: The Professionals 2020 champion Alex Webb, MasterChef 2020 champion Thomas Frake and finalist Sandy Tang, MasterChef: The Professionals' Elena Frattura and Aaron Middleton, and MasterChef 2010 champion Dhruv Baker.

Chef Alex Webb at Foodies Festival

Chef Alex Webb at Foodies Festival - Credit: Foodies Festival

Alex Webb said: “I am so excited to be joining Foodies Festivals again this year, after last year’s amazing event in Chelmsford! Bring it on!”

A legion of chefs from Michelin-starred and award-winning restaurants will give the festival a distinctive local flavour, including Paul Croasdale, chef patron of Michelin recommended The Flitch of Bacon, in Little Dunmow, and private chef Jon Watts, whose customers include pop stars and royalty.

Also appearing in the Chefs Theatre will be Essex-based Becky Excell, a food writer, gluten-free recipe creator, and best-selling author.

Becky Excell will be at Foodies Festival in Chelmsford.

Becky Excell will be at Foodies Festival in Chelmsford. - Credit: Supplied by Foodies Festival

Becky Excell said: "I am really looking forward to coming to Foodies Festival this summer! My mission has always been to reunite those who can’t eat gluten with the foods they miss by recreating all the things they can no longer eat.

"Food is such an important part of our lives and I don’t want anyone to feel left out, fed up or frustrated. You really can make anything gluten-free if you know how, and hopefully that’s what I can show everyone at the festival!”

Joe Wadsack, drinks expert from BBC TV’s Food and Drink series, will share his passion and advice in the Drinks Theatre, alongside many other experts presenting masterclasses and free tasting sessions.

Liberty X and Scouting For Girls will be entertaining crowds at Chelmsford Foodies Festival 2022.

Liberty X and Scouting For Girls will be entertaining crowds at Chelmsford Foodies Festival 2022. - Credit: Supplied by Foodies Festival


Who’s performing on the music stage? 

The music line-up includes chart-toppers Scouting For Girls, and Essex-based Lee Ryan & Simon Webbe from boy band Blue.

Lee and Simon from Blue will appear at Foodies Festival in Chelmsford

Lee and Simon from Blue will appear at Foodies Festival in Chelmsford - Credit: Supplied by Foodies Festival

And new for Friday, Foodies launch their ‘Big Party Night’ – taking a nostalgia-filled trip back to the 90s, featuring some of the biggest music acts of the era, including Liberty X and 911.

Musicians Against Homelessness founder, Emma Rule, said: “I’m very pleased to help bring this amazing line-up of artists to Foodies in Chelmsford.

"I can’t praise them enough for their generous support in these difficult times. The last two years have been incredibly hard for charities and the hospitality industry alike. But together we can and will make a difference.”

Liberty X will play Foodies Festival in Chelmsford

Liberty X will play Foodies Festival in Chelmsford - Credit: Supplied by Foodies Festival


What else to expect?

Celebrity chefs from TV’s biggest cooking shows will once again compete against each other, turning up the heat in the Chefs Theatre.

You can meet authors and discover new recipes in the Cook Book Shop – with celebrity signings and top chefs showcasing their latest cookbooks. 

Visitors will be able to browse the very latest world food trends in the Shopping Village and try exotic and unusual new dishes on Street Food Avenue.

Star bakers will be whipping up sumptuous desserts in the Cake & Bake Theatre, while masterclasses in the Drinks Theatre include cocktail making, and Champagne, beer, cider and wine tasting.

Chilli eating champion Shahina Waseem will challenge those brave enough to compete.

To keep the children entertained, the Kids Cookery School hosted by Foodies' super chefs will take on a ’Ninjas Love Noodles’ theme, encouraging youngsters to make simple food which they can take away and enjoy.

And for those little (and big) thrill seekers, there's a funfair, sand art, craft tents, face painting and family friendly areas.

Tickets are on sale now at www.foodiesfestival.com and 0844 9951111.

Foodies Festival returns to Chelmsford from June 17 to June 19.

Foodies Festival returns to Chelmsford from June 17 to June 19. - Credit: Foodies Festival