WHAT’S ON: Sunderland Food & Drink festival announces its summer return

Sunderland Food & Drink Festival has announced it will take place in the city centre from June 7-9 and is set to suit all tastes, with the addition, it says, of some extra ingredients.

Setting up stall around Keel Square, High Street West and Market Square – and with further expansion to be announced – it will offer street food favourites from across the globe, with continental food stalls rubbing shoulders with local independent traders, plus workshops and live entertainment including Abba tribute duo Voulez 2 and singer Amelia Lily, a former finalist on The X Factor, adding to the atmosphere.

Among the local food attractions will be burger favourite Fat Hippo; fried chicken specialist Twisted Chick and doughnut makers Deep North while foodies also will be able to browse stalls selling everything from sauces to traybakes, cakes, cheese and chutneys. Also out to tempt the taste buds will be the likes of Indian street food; Caribbean cuisine; noodle bars; stands selling German bratwurst and stalls of Greek, Mexican, Hungarian, Thai, Turkish, Chinese and Italian food.

In keeping with the international theme, a market featuring around 50 traders will be selling items including handicrafts from as far afield as Spain, Turkey and South America. Keel Square will be the focus of entertainment, performances and activities throughout the weekend.

Other acts will include Khalysis; pop duo He Knows She Knows and performances by local dance groups. Helping to tick the box for children will be attractions including walkabout characters and workshops for decorating a pot to plant with herbs. There also will be giant games, arts and crafts.

Sharon Appleby, chief executive of Sunderland BID which organises the festival, said: “We have had so much positive feedback after last year’s event and we know that the Food and Drink Festival is something that everyone looks forward to.

“It’s a great mix of something for everyone and we can’t wait to unveil further details of the programme in the coming weeks.”