Orange was the colour as South Holland celebrated the harvest on Friday 5th October with a feast of food, street entertainment, fairground attractions, live music, competitions, fireworks and fancy dress.
Among the 10,000 visitors were a BBC film crew from The One Show, including award-winning writer, presenter and food critic Jay Rayner who took out specially prepared pumpkin delicacies onto the streets for some food tasting. Their pumpkin feature will go out on national television later this month.
South Holland District Council Deputy Leader Nick Worth said: “Yet again the people of South Holland did us proud by fully entering the spirit of what is always a colourful and exciting spectacle.
“We were delighted to see the festival gain national recognition this year with the BBC coming to town. This really is a special occasion for all the family to enjoy.”
As has become tradition the festivities centred on Sheep Market, Hall Place and the Market Place with the humble pumpkin the theme to the district’s centrepiece event.
A host of stalls - inspired by the pumpkin – sold soups, cakes, cookies and pies while the Bread and Butter Theatre Company’s Gardeners’ Question Time and Plunge Boom and The Vegetable Nannies delivered a platter of horticultural humour.
Healthy cookery demonstrations, sponsored by the Health and Well-being Fund, entertained more than 340 visitors on how to make tasty pumpkin recipes including scones, pies, hot pot and soup using our famous pumpkins.
The evening programme included a fancy dress competition and live entertainment with the Peterborough Folk Dancers, morris dancers the Bourne Borderers and Sing South Holland.
The Pumpkin Parade processed through the town, complete with this year’s Flower Queen Amy Harrison whose bespoke choice of transport was the magical Pumpkin Coach.
Fireworks lit up the night sky before popular local band Zebra provided a rousing finale with their eclectic mix of musical covers of artists ranging from The Beatles to Robbie Williams.
The festival was sponsored by grower David Bowman, one of Europe’s largest pumpkin producers. From his farm he grows and sells more than a million pumpkins each year. Mr Bowman kindly provides thousands of free pumpkins to schools and to local charities for the event which celebrates the harvest of the pumpkin crop this month.
The event started in October 2000 and has been held annually since with the town mobilised into a march with a difference every autumn.
The festival was organised by South Holland District Council, supported by The Rotary Club of Welland Centenary, Spalding Lions and the Crescent Traders Association. The event was compered by community radio station Tulip Radio.