City of Wolverhampton’s Festival of Food and Drink at the weekend saw record attendance over the two days – up by almost 7,000 on last’s year inaugural event.
More than 25,000 people enjoyed the festival in the heart of the city centre on Saturday and Sunday after snapping up free tickets.
All tickets for Saturday were secured by Friday evening – and it is estimated the economic benefit to the city over the weekend is around £420,000.
Families revelled in the sunshine off Wulfruna Street, with a wide range of food and drink available, artisan stalls, live music, an open-air cinema, and traditional fairground games across both days.
Visitors on Saturday were treated to a flypast by a C47 Dakota from the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) team.
And shortly after thousands were on cloud nine as they watched England’s glorious World Cup quarter-final win over Sweden on the big screen.
Organiser William Power of Street Banquet and Director of E11EVEN GROUP, said: “A massive thank you to everyone that attended and supported this year’s Wolverhampton Festival of Food & Drink. We were blessed with great weather and a World Cup victory to add to what was an amazing weekend for our team and hopefully the 25,000-plus people in attendance.
“Special thanks go out to all the traders that went above and beyond in what is a challenging weekend’s work for them. All of which were fantastic! Without them there is no foundation for this event so thank you from everyone involved. We do our best to bring new traders and tastes to the city and hope to do so more regularly moving forward.
“The festival provides a great offering and family day out in the city. This was only the second year for us and we are still looking for ways to improve your experience. We take on board all the feedback and plan to come back with an even better festival for you next year.”
Visitor comments on social media included ‘Amazing day! Fun times for my hen do with friends and family and an England win to compliment the food and drink!, ‘What an event! I still can’t get over we was in middle of Wolverhampton and had spent not a penny to get in! Everyone involved in this event should be so proud what a day!, ‘Second year in a row this event was a brilliant day out as expected. Huge range of food and drinks vendors to choose from’.
Councillor John Reynolds, Cabinet Member for City Economy, said: “I am delighted the flagship event of our Enjoy Wolverhampton visitor programme hit new heights this year.
“It is another example of Wolverhampton putting itself on the map and showcases exactly what the city has to offer to residents and visitors.”
In addition to strong advanced ticket numbers, almost 500 visitors chose to pay on the gate at the festival, which resulted in £488 going to the chosen charities of Mayor of Wolverhampton, Councillor Phil Page, and the other half to event costs.