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The Great British Cucumber Festival - Sat 12th May 2012

Author: Kate Towerzey Published: 14th April 2012 12:13

Hattie Hayridge We are excited to announce that the actress and comic Hattie Hayridge, famous for her role as "Holly" in the cult British sci fi comedy show "Red Dwarf", will be opening Cue Fest 2012 as her father and both grandfathers worked in the cucumber industry.

National Cucumber Day will be celebrated at The Great British Cucumber Festival in Abbey Gardens, Waltham Abbey, Essex, EN9 1XQ on Saturday 12th May 2012 from 10am-4pm.

The festival will be the highlight of Waltham Abbey Town Partnership's "Waltham Abbey Loves Food" initiative 2012 programme of events and activities.

A food festival event was initially the idea of the Waltham Abbey Town Partnership, but it has been wholeheartedly and enthusiastically supported by Lea Valley Growers. Lea Valley are well-known growers of salad, but did you know they produce 75% of all our UK cucumbers - with 1.2 million leaving distribution centres each week and contribute substantially to the pepper and tomato supplies too.

Mini Cucumber at 2011 Cue FestInitially it might seem like a strange idea for a great British festival for the humble cucumber (although other salads are welcome), but point out that in the year of London 2012 Olympics on our doorstep it makes a lot of sense to support the notion of our aim to become a healthier nation! 

The festival's aim is threefold - raise awareness of the significance of the Lea Valley salad industry and the highlight the importance to buy local, to raise funds for local charities and to offer a great day out for all.  A food festival and family fun day with a difference with free entry to all.

You can enjoy live music on the Cool as a Cucumber Stage and the arena area will host demonstrations from dance groups and the return of the now infamous cucumber relay race.  As it is Olympic year there will be other sports featured on the day to fit in with this year's health and fitness theme.

Although the day isn't confined to just cucumbers, there will be tomatoes and peppers to taste and buy and a variety of different refreshments on sale including hog roast, Chinese, Jamaican and specialist sausages plus cooking demonstrations. 

In addition to the food, there will be craft stalls, health, fitness and beauty stalls, local businesses, voluntary organisations, clubs and local tourist attractions stands on offer too.

The day is very much for children with lots of hands on activities and cucumber-related arts and crafts free of charge plus competitions to enter including "The Longest Cucumber Competition", bouncy castles, Zorbing, face painters, puppet shows, but there will be plenty for adults to enjoy too. 

Not forgetting the Waltham Abbey's Town Crier Peter Frost, Mr Cucumber and Mini Cucumber mascots to look out for and keep checking the website for yet to be announced special guests....

The Great British Cucumber Festival logoBritish cucumbers are sweeter and have thinner skins, remember to buy British, you can taste the difference!

If you'd like to get involved, take a stand, volunteer to help on the day or sponsor the event, please get in touch via our website http://www.cuefest.co.uk/ or contact the organisers via Facebook "The Great British Cucumber Festival" or Twitter "@cuefest".

For further information or to arrange interviews with Hattie Hayridge or a member of the Lea Valley Growers Association, please contact Kate Towerzey, Publicity, Great British Cucumber organising committee on 01992 651066 or 07950 027959.


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