BAKEWELL: Baking festival is a hot favourite

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Baking hot Bakewell is basking in the glory of hosting a world first this weekend.

Bakewell Baking Festival has turned the town into a hotbed of all things culinary and creative.

Vintage stall at Bakewell Baking Festival

Vintage stall at Bakewell Baking Festival

Beehive baker Stacie Stewart, of Food Glorious Food and Masterchef Fame, whipped up a White Forest Gateau which was eagerly devoured by her fans in the festval marquee on Saturday afternoon.

David Golubows from Castleton-based CocoDance drew a capacity crowd to the Town Hall for his talk on chocolate, with product samples to tickle the tastebuds.

Bunting and balloons fluttering on stalls laden with retro cookware and beautifully decorated cakes and biscuits brings a vintage fete flavour to the festival, attracting hordes of shoppers. Even their four-legged friends are catered for at a patisserie for pooches!

On the Queen of England’s official birthday, the queen of cuisine Fanny Cradock returned to centre stage for a play commissioned by festival organisers. Fanny’s Hotspot, by Story Bag Theatre Company, stars Anni Tosh of Bradwell playing Fanny and John Bowtell from Lincoln as long-suffering hubby Johnnie. The laugh-a-minute comedy, written and directed by Alison Benefield of Bradwell, is repeated on Sunday, June 9, at 2.45pm in the Town Hall.

Decorated biscuit stall at Bakewell Baking Festival

Decorated biscuit stall at Bakewell Baking Festival

Bakewell Parish Church takes on the guise of an old-fashioned Lyons tea room complete with pianist where Pat Bryant, Elaine Marsh and Barbara Davies do a roaring trade as the Nippies refreshing a steady flow of customers and feeding church funds.

The festival’s highlights on Sunday, June 9, include demonstrations by Edd Kimber, winner of the Great British Bake-off in 2010, pastry king Brett Pistorious and Yorkshire Pudding Champion, Chris Blackburn.

Marking the 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice, which Jane Austen is reputed to have completed at the town’s Rutland Hotel, will be a Pies and Prejudice custard pie contest with competitors dressed as Mr Darcy.

Over the weekend, a vintage bus is transporting sightseers from the spiritual home of baking to Chatsworth, believed to be the inspiration for Darcy’s home Pemberley.

Anni Tosh as Fanny Cradock iin a spoof play at Bakewell Baking Festival

Anni Tosh as Fanny Cradock iin a spoof play at Bakewell Baking Festival

Pat Bryant, Elaine Marsh and Barbara Davies as the Nippies at the Lyons tea room in Bakewell Parish Church

Pat Bryant, Elaine Marsh and Barbara Davies as the Nippies at the Lyons tea room in Bakewell Parish Church