AN enticing smell of success hung over Kington at the weekend as the town hosted yet another Festive Food Festival.

Hundreds braved the gloomy weather to relish the large assortment of delectable offerings ranging from homegrown Hereford beef burgers to steamed Chinese belly buns, washed down with appetising drinks from local producers while live musicians serenaded the crowds.

This was not a day for pre-Christmas diets as the waftings from traditional to rather more exotic on-site ovens and burners tempted young and old alike. There was a heady mix of savoury and sweet treats to sample from stalls in the Market Hall and Place-de-Marines, as well as those busy dispensing their wares beneath a sea of canvas, while customers queued happily for their hot food.

One man was selling bags of walnuts grown from dozens of trees he planted in the 1980s, and Presteigne café owner Elda manned a stall laden with her specially imported Colombian coffee beans. Many gathered round for a taste of mutton produced on a small family farm at Weobley Ash, near Titley, while others were drawn to Hope’s Kitchen where Hope and her husband Robert Tolhurst from Lyonshall prepared traditional ‘guabaos’ –Chinese buns with slow braised pork – in bamboo steamers. For those with a sweeter tooth, there were plenty of stalls offering scrumptious sweets, pastries, chocolates and crepes which proved irresistible.

British author Deborah Moggach, whose novel These Foolish Things was made into the film, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, gave her own thumbs up to the event. “It’s a wonderful festival, the food, the music, the atmosphere is fantastic,” she said.

Making a popular return to Kington Festive Food Festival was Herefordshire’s own success story, the Beefy Boys, who did a roaring trade with their locally-sourced burgers and sides. The award-winning outfit was positioned outside Kington Museum, where new chairman, Denise North and outgoing chairman Alan Stoyel kept up a steady supply of mulled wine and mincepies, and of course hundreds of years’ worth of local history.

Kington Town Council praised organisers and local shops and businesses for making the town look “very festive” for Saturday’s event, and thanked the Chamber of Trade for lit-up trees in the High Street and outskirts of town.

*Meanwhile, the town council is asking for views on proposals for a 20mph speed limit in Kington. As well as health benefits due to reduced pollution, research has shown that making areas better for walking and cycling can boost trade by up to 40 per cent, the council claims.

A short survey is available at or by emailing