Newcastle Food Festival finished with over £3,000 raised for charity

Written by on 9th May 2024

Newcastle Food Festival was held over the bank holiday weekend from Saturday, May 4, 10 am to Monday 5pm at Exhibition Park.

It featured food and drink stalls, live entertainment (including music, magicians, and comedians) and activities, such as a kid’s cooking class, a clip and climb wall and an axe-throwing court. There were also stalls offering artisan produce and hand-made crafts.

The festival partnered with Mind (Tyneside and Northumberland), the mental health charity, which raised money via ticket fees and optional donations through a raffle for a “Self-Care Hamper” which included shower gels, a spa-style towel, and a bottle of prosecco (all had been generously donated to the charity).

The event also allowed them to raise awareness of mental health and the booth had a table with pamphlets on a range of matters. The trustees and volunteers at the event noted they had talked to teachers, who picked up leaflets for their school children, and nurses. The festival raised over £3,000 for Mind.

(Band,Gumbox -Monday 6 May)

(Band,Gumbox -Monday 6 May)

Entertainment was varied: magicians who kept the kids busy, live music which included Gumbox, who did a riveting rock version of Cher’s Believe – and, a small band who sang vegetable-theme songs.

The markets had hand-crafted art prints, jewellery, and candles. Ben Staves, of Staves Art, had a stall selling his hand-drawn prints of cities and stadiums across the UK (including St James’ Park and streets of Edinburgh). He has been running the business since 2017, originally beginning on Etsy before moving onto local markets. He stressed the importance getting out there (in markets and on the internet) as an artist.

Food was varied for choice with dishes such as paella, tacos, and fried chicken – and a range of drinks including gin, cocktails, and a range of (on-site drafted) beers. And, there were artisan markets offering cookies, a deli-selection, scotch eggs and much more.

The couple at A Sticky Situation, a stall which sells homemade preserves, cheese, and honey (the latter two are bought from other local suppliers). However, they have started taking bee-keeping courses with their daughter and said they hoped to sell their own honey. They valued their home-made brand and said they jarred their own jams and made the labels themselves.

If you missed this year’s festival, do not worry – it will be returning in 2025.

(Photos credit: Jessica Thompson)

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