The 2024 Accrington Food and Drink Festival brought over £450,000 into the economy, as over 10,000 people attended the popular annual event on Saturday 1st June.

Visitors enjoyed an amazing day of food, drink and free attractions including a D-Day commemoration war reenactment, a Spitfire simulator experience, fairground rides and a star-studded main stage.

The main cooking demonstration area was headlined by TV and Michelin Star Chef, Glynn Purnell, who was joined by Netflix star Molly Robbins and local star The Crafty Fox’s Paul Fox.

Research conducted on the day with those attending showed the day to be a great success. Comments were overwhelmingly positive, with many remarking about the great choice of food on offer, as well as a fantastic range of activities for all the family to enjoy.  Comments included:

“Come to Accrington every week, and what a difference this makes.

Great day – I’ve been looking forward to it, and it didn’t disappoint.

It has made Accrington like it used to be – it feels like old times.

I was lucky to get a slot on the Spitfire simulator, and what a buzz.

A perfect mix of varieties of food. Nice atmosphere.

Bustling – fab food and entertainment.

Staying with friends – travelled from Cornwall and decided to stay another night because of this event, and it was worth it.”

The research showed that 84% of visitors surveyed had come along as a family, with the others being individuals or groups of friends. 46% of visitors surveyed were aged between 25 and 54.

96% of visitors came to Accrington especially to visit the event, with the food festival one of the most popular events in East Lancashire. People from across Hyndburn and children from local schools were also invited to the event, while Under 12s took part in a competition to design a special cake to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Hyndburn Borough Council, which was then produced by Molly Robbins and displayed at the festival.

The average spend per respondent was £45.13. With an estimated 10,000 visitors, this represents over £450,000 back into the economy, which included local businesses, market traders and businesses from across Lancashire.

Councillor Kimberley Whitehead, Portfolio Holder for Culture, Heritage and Arts, said: “The Accrington Food Festival is one of the best-attended events in Lancashire and one that we are extremely proud of here in Hyndburn. The event brings so many people into town and it is great to see how much was spent on the day!”

Murray Dawson, Chair of #AmazingAccrington, said: “We are proud to have organised another very successful event in Accrington. The aim of the Food Festival is to encourage local spending, promoting #ShopLocal and we have done just that.”

Paul Fox, Owner of The Crafty Fox, said: “It’s one of the busiest days of the year for us and the exposure we get on the main stage pulls news customers into my outlet, so it is a massive #ShopLocal win for both the town and retailers. We love it and will keep supporting #AmazingAccrington in their initiatives, with Hyndburn Borough Council’s ongoing support also applauded.”

The Accrington Food Festival was sponsored by Hyndburn Borough Council, Vita Accrington, iMEP International Music Event Production, Sundown Solutions and Financial Affairs.

You can see more photographs and videos from the event on the Amazing Accrington website and on the Amazing Accrington Facebook page.