Thame Food Festival has grown steadily year on year and in 2012 was formally constituted as a Not-for-profit Community Interest Company, CIC.
The Festival was introduced to the town in 2008 to promote and celebrate the wealth of wonderful food producers, food retailers, chefs, food and drink experts, restaurants and cafes in the local area. It has done what it set out to do – with bells on!
It’s put Thame on the map. Over the years it’s brought millions of pounds into the market town. New visitors come throughout the year, not just on the day – and 2016 saw 28,000 people fill the streets and enjoy a wonderful day – the biggest attendance ever!
It has national notoriety and is now considered one of the Top 5 UK Food Festivals in the month of September – sitting alongside Abergavenny, Ludlow, Great Cornish and Aldeburgh.
But most importantly – it has supported and encouraged artisan food producers – by giving them the best platform possible and we have brought visitors in by the thousands to meet and chat and buy their delicious food.
So…to the future…
The festival has outgrown the town. It simply cannot fit anymore stalls, stages and people in it on the day. And the festival has to expand to survive.
The Directors have thought long and hard and it’s been decided that Thame Food Festival will move to the Show Ground on the outskirts of the town from 2017 and will go to a TWO DAY EVENT.
Historically, the Show Ground has hosted festivals and agricultural shows for over 100 years. It’s ideally situated, very easy to get to and has excellent facilities and parking. It also gives Thame Food Festival a chance to expand and grow – and enables it to fill what is a literally blank canvas with new ideas, innovative workshops, pop up restaurant, bigger staging and lots more stalls and chefs.
Patron and Director, Lotte Duncan said
“We are very excited about this move and we have some amazing plans and ideas to make this next chapter of the Festival the best it can possibly be. Including staying open into the evening the Saturday!
We really want Thame town centre and local business’s to continue their involvement with the food festival – it would be great to see them representing their shops up at the show ground – and we have a fabulous idea planned on just how they can do that.
We hope that everyone will continue to support this amazing event and join us on our journey to the Show Ground – it’s a positive move which will allow us to add many more attractions and stalls to the days. This will keep the Festival sustainable for the future, enabling artisan producers to platform their delicious food and give the visitors a wonderful, inspiring and foodie fun day out.
This is the reason we work so hard to keep it going!”