A NEW food festival will be added to Lyme Regis’ calendar of events next year, after being given the go ahead by the town council.
Eat Festivals, which has held a number of successful food festivals mainly in the Somerset area, will be holding its first event in Lyme Regis on April 24 2021.
The one-day event will have a local focus with the aim of benefiting local businesses and food and drink producers within a 30-mile radius of the town.
It was originally proposed for the festival to be held in May, but town councillors felt this was too close to the annual Jazz Jurassica festival, and asked organisers to come back with an alternative date and to gauge interest from local traders.
Speaking at last week’s virtual council meeting, festival organisers Bev and Sarah Milner-Simmonds said they had received a largely positive response after holding initial discussions with local businesses.
They added that they would like to draw visitors on the day to the town centre so, as well as having food stands on the seafront, they would also like to have them on Theatre Square.
Councillors expressed some concerns about stalls being set up on the flat roof area above SWIM, the Antiques & Craft Centre and Amusement Arcade – previously used for similar festivals – as it had just undergone a £650,000 resurfacing project.
Concerns were raised about damaging the new surface and items falling from the flat roof onto Marine Parade below, which has happened during previous festivals and events.
A panel of the new glass fencing was also recently smashed, with glass falling into the level below, which caused some concerns.
But town clerk John Wright said the resurfacing project was carried out with a view to using the area for more events and they should not let “one mishap dictate the future of the roof area”
Cllr John Broom agreed, adding that the new surface was similar to that used in some car parks and was unlikely to be damaged by food stands.
Members agreed to use of the Marine Parade and flat roof area for the event, with officers to work with organisers on specific details. Permission to use the Theatre Square area will have to be sought from Dorset Council.
For more information on Eat Festivals, visit www.eatfestivals.org
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