The Holker Chilli Fest attracted almost 5,000 visitors through its gates last weekend. Visitors enjoyed fiery food and entertainment across the two days with exhibitors from across the country.
Along with the high visitor numbers, highlights included the appearance of Tony Ainsworth, better known in the chilli world as Darth Naga, who oversaw the popular chilli eating competitions held each day and commented that they were two of the best chilli competitions he had ever done. The competitors went an impressive 15 rounds, working their way up to 2 million scovilles. Saturday’s winner was Peter Weir of Preston and Sunday saw joint winners, Damien Nagle of Fleetwood and Dominic Moore of Dalton.
The rain on Saturday certainly didn’t dampen the heat of this year’s show. Jillian Rouse, Head of Visitor Services commented, “Sunday was a glorious day and we were thrilled to see so many people enjoying themselves. We are delighted that in only its second year, the Holker Chilli Fest has become so popular and we look forward to developing the show over the next few years.”
Other highlights included music by La Tinto Brothers from Manchester, professional dancers The Tangled Dance Company, magician Chris Cook, and fire performer Andy Jester who all proved to be real crowd pleasers. Entertaining cookery demonstrations from Made in Cumbria’s Ambassador for Cumbrian food, Gary McClure also attracted large crowds.
The Ilex Bar & BrasserieOpen for lunches - including a very special Sunday lunch -
This weekend’s damp weather didn’t affect the fiery fun at Holker with a full house for the chilli eating competitions hosted by Darth Naga. A packed Courtyard watched on as 10 competitors (on each day) took part in the lively competition. Saturday’s competition was the most entertaining yet with Darth commenting it was best one he had ever hosted - humorous contestants were encouraged by the lively crowd - with Jordan from Barrow taking centre stage. Joint winners took the trophy on Saturday and Ed Duffy was crowned Sunday’s winner after reaching around 250,000 scovilles.