|Accommodation||Baby Facilities||Cash & Cash Points|
|Children||Coaches & Groups||Credit Cards|
|Crowds||Dates for 2017||Disabled Visitors|
|Dogs||Exhibitors||First Aid & Medical Facilities|
|Quality of Products||Shopping Creche||Tickets/Prices|
|Toilets||Transport & Travel|
3-Day Adult £20.00
Ludlow and the surrounding area offers a wide range of great places to stay - hotels, inns, b&bs, cottages and camp sites. Comprehensive visitor and accommodation information can be found on the Ludlow web site - www.ludlow.org.uk
Early booking is advisable as accomodation goes fast over the festival periods.
(Please note the Food Festival is unable to advise or help you book accommodation.)
Camping and small campervans at Ludlow Rugby Club, which lies at the base of Ludlow Castle just 200 yards away and only a 400 yard walk to the Spring Festival. Ludlow Rugby Club have decided to use the 10 acre site as a Caravan, Motorhome, and Campsite for both the Spring & Food Festival from 10am on Friday, Saturday and Sunday night.
TO BOOK go to the Ludlow Rugby Club website here www.pitchero.com/clubs/ludlowrfc. Any questions please email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or text Lynne Davies on 07980 290660.
BABY CHANGING & FEEDING FACILITIES
There are baby changing and feeding facilities available within the festival; these are based within small marquees and contain a table and chairs for your use. There is also a small amount of disposable changing mats and wipes available for your use, if needed, along with sanitizing gel.
Is there a cash machine in the castle?
No, but there are cash machines at all the major banks, within 5 minutes walk: Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds TSB, NatWest and Nationwide. There are also cash machines outside the Post Office (One Stop Shop, Upper Galdeford) and outside Tesco (the car park side).
Is there a bureau de change?
Apart from Sunday the Post Office (at the One Stop Shop, Upper Galdeford, next door to Co Op), and the four major banks (Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds TSB, NatWest) all have foreign exchange facilities (converting to pounds). These are all within 5 minutes walk of the castle.
Is there anything for children to do?
Most things in the Festival will be suitable for, and of interest to, all the family, apart from alcoholic beverages.
Activities that will be of particular interest to children (and also adults) include kids cookery where kids (and parents) can have a go, Panic Circus and Waiters Race. Specific talks and demonstrations will also be focused on children's involvement on Saturday and Sunday so please check the programme for your intended day of visit to see which events will be occurring.
Can I bring a coach party or other group?
Yes, coach parties - and other groups - are welcome, especially on Friday or Sunday, which are a bit quieter than Saturday, but please help us to help you by contacting us in advance. Discounted prices for groups available (for 15 people or more) please either contact us or download the Group Booking Form.
Do you take credit cards?
Many individual vendors do take credit cards. But it is always useful to have cash with you! At the entrance to the Castle, payments for admission can be made with cash, a personal cheque, debit or credit card. Online ticket sales are available for payment by credit or debit card. We suggest that you buy your tickets online in advance in order to avoid queues at the busiest times. (A £1 order fee is applied to each total online sales order to cover card costs.)
I don't like large crowds - when is the Festival quietest?
Friday and Sunday are the quieter days, and the Friday when trade visitors often prefer to come. The peak periods are between about 12 and 2.30 on each day - during these times you may well find the food and drink marquees in the castle are very crowded, and it is suggested that you may wish to visit other festival venues outside the castle, at those times. The first part of the morning and the afternoon from about 3.00 pm onwards are also good times for leisurely inspection of the stands.
The Ludlow Marches Food & Drink Festival will be held on:
Friday 8th, Saturday 9th & Sunday 10th September
Access in Ludlow (South Shropshire Access Group)
Wheelchair and scooter access - All events in Ludlow Castle and most other venues are suitable for wheelchair and scooter access. The entrance to the Castle itself has a rough cobbled surface and a wheelchair user may require assistance - readily available on the spot - for this short section. Some shops have entrance steps but again assistance is readily available. We will have light use wheelchairs available for hire with a deposit left until their return.
Disabled toilets can be found at the car park off Castle Square, and in the Castle during the Food and Drink Festival.
Disabled car park spaces (for disabled badge holders) can be found in the car park off Castle Square, on Mill Street and throughout the town. Please note that Castle car park is closed on Saturday and Sunday of the festival.
One of the Park & Ride buses has a low floor access. Further information on this will be available from the stewards at the car park and forward parking is provided for disabled passengers.
Blind and partially sighted - we have specific provisions in place and guided access to the festival and ask that you contact the office for further details.
Wheelchair hire - we do have a limited number of wheelchairs that can be hired over the weekend for a £30 deposit. These can be reserved and if you would like to do so please contact the office.
If you have special needs and require assistance, please do not hesitate to contact our office on 01584 873957, or by email, and we will be happy to do what we can to help.
Can I bring my dog?
Well-behaved dogs on a lead are allowed in the castle grounds, but NOT in any marquee or anywhere where food preparation is taking place (except guide dogs). Festival venues other than the castle each have their own policy regarding dogs, but of course food shops do not normally permit dogs to enter.
Dog Creche: there will be a dog creche inside the castle where the charge will be £2 per hour - donations to the Birch Hill Dog Rescue.
There are trained personnel on site throughout the weekend and an ambulance on site to cope with any incidents that may occur. Ludlow Hospital has a minor incidents unit which does have limited opening hours so if an incident happens within the castle we urge you to use the first aid tent located adjacent to the entrance.
OPENING TIMES - 2016
The castle is open to the public as follows:
Friday 9th September: 10.00 am to 5.00 pm
Saturday 10th September: 10.00 am to 6.30 pm
Sunday 11th September: 10.00 am to 5.00 pm
Last admission 30 minutes before closing time.
Events outside the castle have their own times which are shown throughout the website.
TRAIN TRAVEL - Coming by train is the quickest and easiest way of getting to Ludlow as the station is just a ten minute walk from the Castle and you get to see the town on your meander through. Best of all you can buy your ticket into the festival actually at the station or on the train so no queues either - and you're helping the environment!! more details at www.arrivatrainswales.co.uk.
PLEASE use the FESTIVAL PARK & RIDE service - Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Ludlow is a charming medieval town, but has limited town centre parking, which at the time of an event like the Food Festival is even more limited!
COACH PARKING: There is VERY limited coach parking in town and so when you make your group booking we will send you details of where to park the coach and also passes for the driver along with your passes to get in so please make sure you book in advance.
FESTIVAL PARK & RIDE LOCATION: please watch out for the FESTIVAL Park & Ride signs on the A49 and the A4117 as you approach Ludlow. The postcode for satnav purposes is SY8 3ET, located at HENLEY HALL.
PARK & RIDE - we advise you to use the FESTIVAL park and ride (detail below)DO NOT use the town park and ride as it will stop at various locations along the way whereas the festival bus will go direct to town and back again. Also the facilities available are not set up to deal with the volume of cars that the festival creates. Follow the AA signs to the car park.
Using the Festival's Park & Ride is quicker and easier for everyone and for your convenience we have established a FESTIVAL PARK & RIDE scheme in a convenient edge-of-town location (by kind permission of the Lumsden's, Henley Hall) close to the by-pass on the A117 Kidderminster Road, where for only £5 per car you get supervised parking AND a return journey on a frequent bus service to and from the town centre from 9am Friday, Saturday & Sunday. (Please be aware that this is a grass field so please do wear appropriate footwear.) The last bus runs half an hour after the gate closes on the festival - 5.30pm Friday, 6.45pm Saturday and 5.30pm on Sunday. A low-floor bus is available for people with disabilities, but if you have special needs you are invited to contact us in advance and we can make any appropriate arrangements - see here.
Please be aware that at peak times of travel there may be queues to use the buses even though there will be up to 8 buses in operation. From previous knowledge these peak times are:
Friday afternoon return to the parking site from 2pm-4pm
Saturday morning going into the festival from 10am- 11.30am
Saturday afternoon from 3pm - 5pm return to the parking site
PARK & WALK!
As an alternative to the Festival Park & Ride a couple of organisations within the town offer a park and walk facility - in return raising money for their funds by using volunteers to park people and provide a much needed facility for the festival.
The Ludlow Cricket Club will be open on the three days of the Festival.
This parking area at Ludlow Cricket Club has capacity for 400-500 vehicles with easy access, plus a very large space for overnight campers.
Ludlow Cricket Club is a non-profit organisation with all monies being ploughed back into cricket facilities, especially to benefit junior cricket in the area.
Shrewsbury Town in the Community will be running a Charity Car Park at the Ludlow Football Stadium on the three days of the Festival.
The parking area at Ludlow Football Stadium has capacity for 400-500 vehicles with easy access located just of the A49 approximately a 10minute walk from the town centre.
Shrewsbury Town in the Community is a registered charity and a non-profit organisation with all car-parking proceeds contributing to the running of Community Engagement Programmes and Projects in Shropshire.
Charity Car Parking at McConnels in Weeping Cross Lane on the Saturday and Sunday.
It's done to raise money for local charity, Joels Wish. who support Severn Hospice
Please do not try to park in the town centre during the three days of the Festival - you will find it very difficult to locate a legal parking space and your attempts will simply add to the congestion. There is the 'town service' Park and Ride located at the Eco Park, operated by the Shropshire Council, which will be running a normal service throughout the weekend. Buses run every 30 minutes and drop off just a couple of minutes walk from the centre of the town and the castle. However, please be aware that this service is not set up to deal with festival traffic and will become congested and long queues can be expected. The Festival Park and Ride is definitely the easiest way to get to the Festival if you are coming by car.
Disabled car park spaces (for disabled badge holders) can be found in the car park off Castle Square.
Access Ludlow (South Shropshire Access Group)
Please also note that because of the numbers of visitors to the town involved, King Street, High Street and Castle Street (the main streets leading to the castle) will be closed to vehicles during most of Saturday and Sunday, for safety reasons. (Pedestrians can have the whole street to themselves.) This means it will be even more sensible to use the Festival Park and Ride!
What happens to the profits?
Ludlow Marches Food and Drink Festival is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. Any surpluses can only be used for financing the next year's festival, or for otherwise furthering the aims of the festival, which are to promote and assist independent, quality food and drink producers and suppliers in Ludlow and the Marches. Surpluses cannot be paid as dividends to the members. Most of the work of the Festival is done by volunteers. We have two permanent employees (one part time and one full time) and a small number of the workers at the Festival weekend are also paid, for particular reasons.
What about the quality of the food and drink at the Festival?
This is the most important question of all! We try hard to ensure that all food and drink supplied at, and associated with the Festival, is of the highest taste quality and of the highest standard of production. Except for products and ingredients that clearly have to be brought in from elsewhere - such as coffee, for example - almost all of it is produced by small independent producers from the Welsh Marches area. As well as taste quality which is paramount (it has to taste good, and will almost always taste better than the equivalent from industrialised, globalised large-scale production, and be better for your health), we try to ensure that products are produced with respect to the environment - this doesn't have to mean organic (though organic is good) but it does mean that sustainable production with a minimum of artificial intervention is required. We select the exhibitors at the festival, and the suppliers of take-away food, very carefully, but we cannot examine or analyse every product by every supplier. But any supplier that is found to be supplying food or drink at the festival that does not meet our standards and requirements will be asked to stop doing so - and is very unlikely to be asked to return next year.
Why not leave your purchases (not your kids) at the shopping creche (located at the entrance/exit of the festival in the castle grounds) and pick them up later!
Run by the Festival's charity for 2017 - Self Help Africa
3-Day Adult £21.00
Tickets are available here or you can purchase them by contacting us.
Toilets + Disabled toilet facilities can be found at the car park off Castle Square, and in the Castle during the Food and Drink Festival.
Access in Ludlow (South Shropshire Access Group)
Travel to Ludlow
The A49 trunk road from Warrington (M6) in the north, through Shrewsbury and Hereford to Ross-on-Wye in the south gives good access to Ludlow. From Birmingham, head west on the A456 through Kidderminster, or from the M5 leave at Junction 3 and join the A456 through Kidderminster. At Clows Top, the best route is to leave the A456, forking right on to the A4117, signposted Cleobury Mortimer.
For your convenience - and that of others - please use the Festival Park & Ride when you reach Ludlow. Watch out for the FESTIVAL Park and Ride signs on the A49 and the A4117 as you approach Ludlow - don't head for the town centre.
ROADS CLOSED IN TOWN CENTRE DURING THE FESTIVAL
On the Saturday and Sunday of the Festival, King Street, High Street and Castle Street (in the centre of town) will be closed to vehicles, at the request of the police, in order to make these streets a safer and more pleasant environment for the peak time of the Festival. Castle Street car park will not be available; therefore it is even more essential to use the Festival Park & Ride.
There is a fast and frequent train service to Ludlow, which is on the Manchester-Crewe-Cardiff line. From London Paddington and SW England there are good connections at Newport (South Wales) or Hereford; at Crewe, Manchester or Shrewsbury there are connections to the north of England, North Wales, the Midlands and Scotland. There are also direct through trains to Ludlow from Chester, Holyhead, and north Wales, and from south and west Wales.
On all Arriva Train services you will also be able to purchase Rail and Festival entrance tickets in the station and on the train thus saving time once you reach the castle, please visit Arriva Trains Wales website for further information.
For telephone enquiries and bookings phone Ludlow Station Travel on 01584 877090; National Rail Enquiries on 08457 48 49 50 (or Welsh language 0845 60 40 500) or visit Traveline for information about times, routes, etc.
There are services to Ludlow from Birmingham, Shrewsbury, Kidderminster and Hereford, as well as from many smaller places in the immediate area.
The nearest airport is Birmingham, approx 90 mins by car or by trains from Birmingham International station (via Shrewsbury), which is adjacent to the airport. Manchester, Liverpool, and Cardiff airports are also convenient, with good road and rail links.
Do we cater for vegetarians?
There is a wide range of vegetable products and vegetarian food for you to sample.
For more information about access in Ludlow generally, please contact the Visitor Information Centre on 01584 875053.
The Food Festival is based on volunteers and some of our volunteers have been with us since the start, but every year we need lots of new people to help with the festival. So if you feel you have the time to get involved we would really appreciate it. Please either download a Volunteers Registration Form / Student Volunteer Registration Form or contact us, we would be pleased to welcome you to our team of volunteers.
There are two talks and demonstration stages within the festival and they are both free to attend.
Taste Workshops are led by expert producers or chefs who will guide you through a tutored tasting of selected food and drink. Booking is essential!
The Exhibitors at the festival are integral to the success of the event and are ALL based within Ludlow and the Marches
There's more to Ludlow than posh nosh. Named 'England's Finest Market Town' by Country Life Magazine some years ago...
The festival simply could not happen without its band of merry men & women; so come and be part of this fantastic team!
For 2016 we have the very popular Pork Pie Making, Sushi classes, Butchery and Thai Green Curry. Book early places are limited.
The Sausage Trail; Ale Trail and Bread Trail take place on the Saturday + the Window Dressing Competition all weekend.
Danielle's Coffee will ensure you experience great coffee and learn all about those different flavours.
Getting hands on and dirty is the best way to learn, especially when you get to eat what you've made - this is what we're planning on doing with our NEW kids sessions each day. Education and fun, don't miss them!