The History of the Festival

Herefordshire is a treasure house of familiar cherished flavours. Because of the rural nature of the county our food is still intrinsically what it has always been – home grown, home reared and homemade, reflecting the seasons of the year and the great creations of dedicated farmers, producers, butchers, bakers, wine, beer, cider makers and country cooks. A warming farming cuisine rooted in simplicity dating back through history.

Inspired by these truly great and significant assets of the county, together with an excuse to raise the glass and celebrate our rich historical history of foods of feast and festival, starting simply, the first Flavours of Herefordshire Food Festival was held in 2006 at Hereford Racecourse. With a huge amount of work undertaken by a very small dedicated team, supported and encouraged by a superb group of sponsors, the passion of all the exhibitors and volunteers, over the years the festival grew to the stage that it needed in 2012, it needed new home; Hereford City Centre.

Here was an opportunity to create an exciting ‘pop-up city in a city’ festival, free to all, and which encompassed not only food and drink but all the ‘flavours’ of Herefordshire including family entertainment, creative events and culture right in the heart of Hereford City.

The Close of Hereford Cathedral dating back to the 12th century, with many historical references to food and drink, is now home to the majority of the Festival. It was here that the College of Vicars Choral employed a cook, baker and brewer for the Brew House and where during medieval times supplies were brought in by River Traders on the Wye to a quay at the south side of the cathedral. Some of the most documented and tangible links to the history of food and drink in the city.

The Close now not only hosts food and drink exhibitors in the Food Pavilion, but new for 2013 are the West End Food Pavilion, the Celebrity Theatre, The Secret Garden hosting family entertainment and activities for children and the Food and Drink Village for lip licking good street food. The pedestrianised shopping centre, High Town, will encompass delicious street food, street entertainers and show case Herefordshire Farmers’ Market.