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Bury Free Press BID Column August 2023

The annual Our Bury St Edmunds Food & Drink is almost upon us – showcasing why the town is the foodie capital of Suffolk. I’m delighted that this year we have more stalls than ever including more than 20 that haven’t been part of this event before. It promises to be great free family event over the Sunday and Monday of this Bank Holiday weekend.

The ’foodie’ reputation isn’t something that ‘just happens’. It’s the result of the hard work and high standards of so many restaurants, cafes, bars and other food and drink related businesses in the town. The plethora of awards that are bestowed on our businesses is testament to that. Pea Porridge has recently retained its Michelin Star and Lark has been recognised by The Good Food Guide.

This summer, regional magazine Velvet held its first ever Food & Drink Awards. The team at Vino Gusto picked up the Food & Drink Hero award. The judges were impressed with the way this business has grown from an online venture during the pandemic into a fully rounded business. I remember this initiative starting during that very difficult time for hospitality and initially opening as a wine shop within the One Bull. Congratulations to all involved with the venture for making it such a success. And in the Tearoom/Coffee Shop of the Year category at the same awards the innovative Procopio’s Pantry in Langton Place was a runner up. A great achievement for such a young business, that at the time of the awards had been established for less than two years.

The national Muddy Stiletto Awards have been established 10 years and celebrate independent businesses across a wide range of categories. A number of Bury St Edmunds based businesses made it through to the regional finals in this case from across Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. The Angel was the regional winner in the Hotel/Inn section and The Theatre Royal topped the Theatre/Arts Venue category. However, The Wine Cellar in the Buttermarket took the national award for Best New Lifestyle Start Up. Again, and as the award suggests, this is another young business in the town – having recently celebrated its first anniversary. The team will be taking part in the Our Bury St Edmunds Food & Drink Festival – see them on the stage in the Stoves Cookery Theatre on Monday and The Angel will also be on stage on the Sunday.

Others showcasing in the theatre kitchen over the two days include: The Bay Tree, Rustico, 1921, The Olive Grove and Baskervilles to name but a few. And of course the event has all the other much-loved elements for a family day out including fairground rides, big games and of course the urban beach which will remain at arc Shopping Centre for another week. We hope it’s a great weekend for our member businesses and for all who come along to visit.

By Mark Cordell, CEO of Our Bury St Edmunds BID.

Posted 8 months ago