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'Wacky entertainment' at 2023 Ilkley Food & Festival

Flashmob at The Ilkley Food & Drink Festival (Photo: Stephen Midgely)

Organisers of the Ilkley Food & Drink Festival have announced its return in June to East Holmes Field and promise brand-new “interactive tasting experiences” and a weekend full of live entertainment.

After attracting tens of thousands over the past three years, organisers promise an ‘expanded festival experience’, including interactive Cheese, Wine, Whisky & Chocolate tasting sessions with local experts.

Michael Johnston, Festival Director said: “Last year we saw the successful introduction of wacky entertainment that went down a treat. We saw chefs on stilts, riding bicycles...Picture that if you can!

“We already have incredible food and drink producers, street food, bars & chefs in the cookery theatre. This year we’re upping our game and focusing on increasing the interactive experiences at the festival. We’ll be hosting Cheese, Wine, Whiskey & Chocolate tasting sessions with experts, as well as hands on experiences such as Cocktail Making Sessions.”

Nikki Orrell is part of the festival team: “Ilkley is a stunning place and we’re so lucky to host this event in such a beautiful location next to the river, with the Cow & Calf rocks looking down on us. Every year we have attendees travelling from all over the country to visit us.”

Michael added: “The food is very important to us, but so it’s the feel of the event. The mix of cultures & ages brings a unique, warm, buzzing atmosphere.”

The festival on June 10th and 11th will include a Live Music stage, a Cookery Theatre, a Live Entertainers Stage, Kids Activities, Roaming Comedy, Cocktail Making & Interactive Tasting Sessions.

The festival will once again run additional activities throughout the festival to raise funds and awareness for Bradford-based charity Bradford Mind, with the group’s festivals having raised over £68,000 over the past years for mental health charities.

Tickets and Info are available at


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