In just a few weeks time foodies and flyers from all over the country will descend on the usually quiet Herefordshire village of Shobdon for an annual celebration of local gastronomy and aviation. Hungry travellers will arrive by car, on foot and by air for the Shobdon Food & Flying Festival sponsored by Discover Bestparks, which has become a staple of the county’s social calendar.
Now hosted by Herefordshire Aero Club at the historic airfield where glider pilots were trained during the Second World War, 2018 sees the 14th annual Food Festival in the village.
In 2004, the team which had previously organised charity Flower Festivals to help fund the upkeep of the local church thought it was time to try something a little different. The ethos was laid out right from the beginning: to celebrate Herefordshire gastronomy and support local producers over a weekend that the whole family could enjoy with profits donated to predominantly local good causes.
The popularity of the village festival grew year after year; with arts and crafts, live music and cooking demonstrations added to the line-up. But, with the weather affecting the show and crowds by far outgrowing the grounds of the village church, the festival joined forces with Herefordshire Aero Club to form Shobdon Food & Flying Festival.
The addition of aviation attractions has really given the event a distinctive selling point, with visitors now able to get up close to a variety of aircraft on the ground as well as watching them coming and going throughout the weekend.
Visitors can take trial flights over the stunning Herefordshire countryside with Herefordshire Aero Club and Tiger Helicopters and can even book in for a tandem skydive with the newly formed Skydive Shobdon team.
If that wasn’t enough, as the Royal Air Force marks its centenary, the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight is also set to pay a visit with the only Lancaster Bomber still flying in the UK.
The event continues to welcome families across the weekend with a fantastic selection of local food and drink, a host of aviation attractions, local crafts, entertainment, cookery demonstrations (this year with Great British Bake Off favourite, Val Stones as well as a plethora of local chefs) and a gala evening and auction with music provided by the country’s #1 Rat Pack tribute act starring ITV weather presenter, Des Coleman.
For an affordable festival weekend with a little something for everyone, head to Shobdon Airfield on June the 30th and July 1st for an event guaranteed to tickle the taste buds and stimulate the senses. And remember: arrive hungry and don’t forget to look up!
For information including tickets to the Rat Pack Returns evening, visit www.shobdonfoodandflyingfestival.co.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org