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More than 60,000 foodies from around the globe watch Norfolk’s first virtual food festival

PUBLISHED: 13:32 16 June 2020 | UPDATED: 14:49 16 June 2020

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Alan Palmer Photography

Bread-making demonstrations, pastry creations and insights into the region’s delicious delicacies took pride of place during Norfolk’s inaugural virtual food festival.

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

The event, which took place at Holkham Hall based on the north Norfolk coast, went viral across the globe with more than 60,000 foodies logging in from all corners of the world, from Cornwall to Manchester and further afield in Portugal and America.

Hosted by chef Charlie Hodson, of Norfolk Food Heroes, the event showcased the talent of chefs and the produce of more than 50 local producers .

Mr Hodson said he had been “overwhelmed” with the support and interest received: “I had high hopes for the day with a such an incredible setting and line-up, however you never really know how things will go when launching something such as a virtual food festival for the first time.

“To think we had people watching across the world is simply amazing, as is reaching six times more people than we would have done at a usual festival.”

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

With many food festivals cancelled across the UK for 2020, the aim was to shine a light on local food and drink and cookery talent, as well as to give people something to look forward to after weeks in lockdown.

READ MORE: Chef’s farm cookery videos will help children learn during the lockdown.



A live stream took place on Sunday, June 14, and reached more than 60,000 people. It is believed that the figure will continue to rise as coverage continues in the weeks to come in the form of recipes, blogs and more from the chefs and producers involved.

Looking ahead, Mr Hodson added he was “keen to make this the first of many”.

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

In partnership with CookeryLive, Walsingham Farms Shop, Feast Norfolk and Local Flavours, the event saw local chefs cook live on stage, including vegan specialities from chef Sara Matthews of Sara by Nature and dishes from sporting stars, paralympian Jessica Jane Applegate and triathlete Sam Proctor.

Viewers also watched behind the scenes footage, interviews and cookery demonstrations.

Lucy Downing, head of marketing at Holkham, added: “The team has worked incredibly hard to make it happen in under a month.”

The live film is still available to playback on the Holkham Facebook page.

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

The event also raise money for Hospitality Action UK, to support those working in the industry. To make a donation to Hospitality Action UK visit www.hospitalityaction.org.uk/donate.

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture:  Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture:  Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

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Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography

Local chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture:  Alan Palmer PhotographyLocal chefs and the best produce Norfolk has to offer took centre stage at the first Norfolk Virtual Food Festival. Picture: Alan Palmer Photography


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