Popular TV chefs to star at Seaham Food Festival

Two of the country’s favourite TV presenters are among the first celebrity chefs to be announced for this year’s Seaham Food Festival.

The Durham County Council-run festival will return to Seaham’s coastline on Saturday August 3 and Sunday August 4 with two days packed with celebrity cookery demonstrations, street entertainment and a selection of food from hundreds of traders.

Among the chefs set to take to the stage is TV star and author Rosemary Shrager, who proved she could cook just about anything, anywhere when she appeared on I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here. Since her time in the jungle, Rosemary has been involved in a number of fun food programmes, including Netflix’s Best Leftovers Ever – where she judged some crazy leftover combinations in the US. She was also part of Fishing Scotland’s Lochs and Rivers for Channel 5. Most recently, she has appeared as a chef mentor in ITV’s Cooking with the Stars.

Rosemary will be sharing the stage on Saturday with chef and presenter Phil Vickery. Having been part of This Morning for more than 22 years, Phil is one of Britain’s most well-known chefs, presenting both live and pre-recorded cookery items. He often presents his cookery segments from locations far and wide, such as Grenada, Turks and Caicos, The Great Barrier Reef, and Goa. He has also appeared on BBC’s Holiday, Ready Steady Cook, and Proof of the Pudding, and has had two series on ITV – Phil Vickery’s Pudding Club and Save Money: Good Diet. Phil is also the national food ambassador for Coeliac UK, and a prolific author with 19 books to-date.

Also returning is Bishop Auckland’s Mike Bartley, a former MasterChef contender and favourite at the region’s food festivals. Mike is currently working to open his own restaurant on Newgate Street in Bishop Auckland, which will offer an affordable tasting menu with a focus on foraged and locally grown produce. He plans to host several former MasterChef contestants at bi-monthly events, where a selection of their dishes will be added to the menu for one weekend. He is also working as a private chef and provides meal preparation services to elite sportspeople based in the North East.

Cllr Elizabeth Scott, Durham County Council’s cabinet member for economy and partnerships, said: “We are excited to be able to announce the celebrity chefs for Seaham Food Festival. To me, this officially marks the countdown to the festival and we’ve kicked off the announcements with a fantastic line up for Saturday. As one of the region’s biggest food festivals, thousands are expected to flock to Seaham over the two days, not only bringing an economic boost to the appearing traders but to businesses local to the area. I hope people are getting ready to make the trip to the seaside for a summer weekend celebrating all things food.”

Mike, Phil and Rosemary will be joined by crowd favourite and TV presenter Chris Bavin, who returns as host. Chris co-presents BBC One’s Eat Well for Less? alongside Jordan Banjo and is a regular on The One Show. He’s also presented Aldi’s Next Big Thing as well as Tomorrow’s Food with Dara O’Brian and Food: Truth or Scare with Gloria Hunniford, and was a judge on Britain’s Best Home Cook with Mary Berry.

The line up for Sunday’s celebrity chefs will be announced soon. For more information about the festival visit www.seahamfoodfestival.co.uk

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