As Seaham gets set to host its first food festival this weekend, visitors are being encouraged to plan their journeys in advance.
Seaham Food Festival will serve up more than 100 traders, cookery demonstrations by celebrity chefs John Torode and Phil Vickery, workshops, music and more at Terrace Green on the seafront.
Excitement is building for the free Durham County Council event, which is expected to attract thousands of people to the seaside town on Saturday, 8 June and Sunday, 9 June.
Keen to make the event as accessible as possible, the council has arranged for a special park and ride service to operate on both days.
The park and ride buses are all wheelchair accessible and will run every ten minutes between Spectrum Business Park (SR7 7TT) in Seaham and the town centre. Signs directing road users to the Spectrum will be on display on all major approach roads into the town.
On Saturday, the first bus will leave the business park at 9.30am and the last bus will leave at 4.30pm. The last return bus will leave the festival at 5.30pm.
On Sunday, the first bus will leave Spectrum at 9.30am and the last bus will leave at 3.30pm. The final bus will return from the festival at 4.30pm. Drop off and pick up points at the festival site are the same.
Return tickets cost £2 for adults, 50 pence for children aged six to 15 years and are free for concessions and youngsters aged five and under.
Town centre car parks will also be open, although may be busy. Road users should also be aware that North Terrace will be closed from 5pm on Friday, 7 June to 9pm on Sunday, 9 June. Diversions will be in place during this time.
Festival goers can make their journeys even more relaxing and reduce their carbon footprint by using public transport.
Seaham Railway Station is a ten-minute walk from the festival site and is on the Carlisle to Middlesbrough train line.
This is ideal for those living in Carlisle, Hexham, Corbridge, Wylam, Newcastle, Sunderland, Hartlepool, Stockton and Middlesbrough.
Normal bus services will also be operating on both days.
Cllr Joy Allen, Cabinet member for transformation, culture and tourism, said: “We are so excited to deliver a food festival in Seaham for the very first time. I’m sure this tempting combination of celebrity chefs, workshops, delicious local produce and exotic street food will appeal to thousands of people of all tastes and ages.
“That’s why it’s so important festival goers plan their journeys in advance and use public transport where possible. Alternatively, our park and ride service will ensure you can get close to the action, whilst minimising traffic jams.”
John Torode, presenter of BBC MasterChef and John and Lisa’s Weekend Kitchen on ITV, will demonstrate some of his favourite recipes at the free open-air cookery theatre on Terrace Green on Saturday. ITV This Morning’s resident chef Phil Vickery, meanwhile, will appear on Sunday. Visitors can also look forward to demonstrations by Rachel Green, an award-winning chef, local food campaigner, author and television presenter, on the Saturday, and seafood specialists The Crabstock Boys on both days.
For more information about traveling to Seaham Food Festival, visit www.seahamfoodfestival.co.uk. To stay up to date with the latest festival news follow @SeahamFoodFest on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Seaham Food Festival is part of #Durham19, a year-long campaign led by Visit County Durham, the council and other partners to celebrate the many cultural events taking place across the county this year. To find out more, visit www.durham.gov.uk/durham19