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Christmas at Holkham

Enter the festive spirit at Holkham this Christmas with candlelight tours of the magnificently decorated state rooms, seasonal opera, a series of craft workshops and a special visit from Father Christmas.

Friday 1st – Friday 22nd December 2017.

Holkham Hall will open its doors this Christmas for a variety of spectacular seasonal celebrations including Candlelight Tours of the hall, magnificent music, craft workshops, a two-day Food Fair, Christmas shopping and a special visit from Father and Mother Christmas and their cheeky elves.

The celebrations begin with a sparkling evening of song with a performance of ‘Tis The Season by Diva Opera, Britain’s foremost chamber opera company. Guaranteed to put everyone in the festive spirit with a feast of arias, songs and carols, audiences will also delight at the fabulous cast dressed in finest period costume.

New for this year Holkham will be hosting a selection of Christmas themed workshops. There is a workshop to suit every member of the family, including ‘A Natural Christmas’ workshop, which will inspire children to get creative making decorations with a special Christmas sparkle using foliage and greenery from Holkham Park. Nothing quite says Christmas like putting a hand-made wreath on your front door and budding florists can try their hand at creating their own wreaths and floral arrangements at the ‘Wreath Making’ and ‘Festive Flowers’ workshops. Whilst those with a sweet tooth will love creating edible gingerbread wreaths at the ‘Gingerbread Creation’ workshop.

Holkham’s spectacular Candlelight Tours offer a magical opportunity to see the state rooms adorned with opulent decorations and beautiful flickering candlelight. The guided tours are a chance to hear how the decorations are made and about Holkham’s history from the hall’s knowledgeable guides. Visitors this year will be treated to stunning visual displays in the Landscape Room and the South Drawing Room by two talented local designers. The Landscape Room, with its collection of Old Master paintings, will form the backdrop for a show-stopping peacock themed display by local artist Kate Bagnall-Oakeley of Mock Orange Flowers. A spectacular mannequin will be decorated using fir garlands, ferns, hydrangeas and tiny lights to form a flower and garland skirt, bodice, wig and head-dress for the display. The South Drawing Room will showcase the ultimate dining experience, with the dining table ornately set for an exotic banquet. The centrepiece of the table will be a Russian wedding cake created by brilliant cake maker, Claire Owen. The cake will be hand decorated in a magical palette of colours, inspired by Holkham Hall. Claire’s background in sculpture lends her creations a distinct sculptural style, meticulously executed with detailed piping, stylised forms and bold colours.

The Lady Elizabeth Wing will host a two-day Festive Food Fair with a delicious collection of Christmas food and drink from local and regional producers offering Christmas treats for food lovers, as well as an entertaining cookery theatre with demonstrations from local chefs to provide plenty of inspiration for visitor’s own Christmas feasts.

Throughout the festive period Holkham’s Courtyard Gift Shop – the perfect place to seek out Christmas gifts - will be open daily offering an array of exquisite tree and room decorations as used to decorate the hall, in addition to the shop’s usual selection of exclusive gifts from local producers and artisans. There will be a special Christmas shopping evening in November with a 10% discount on all purchases for all customers and a gift wrapping service along with a glass of mulled wine and a mince pie to enjoy whilst they browse the Christmas selection.

Finally families will delight at the arrival at Holkham Hall of Father and Mother Christmas and their band of elves as they stop off during his busy schedule for a very special Audience With Father Christmas. Father Christmas will be in the Saloon regaling children with tales of wonder and magic, along with music and surprises from his elves. There will be a present for every child as well as a small biscuit and soft drink, or a glass of Prosecco for adults.

Diva Opera performances on Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd December, tickets cost £40.
Candlelight Tours on select dates between Sunday 3rd and Wednesday 20th December, tickets cost £18 for adults and £12 for children, suitable for 10 years and over.
The Festive Food Fair is on Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th December, free entry, £3 car parking charge in Holkham Park applies (redeemable in the gift shop or café on purchases of £12 or more).
Christmas Themed Workshops on selected dates between Sunday 3rd and Wednesday 20th December, tickets cost £5 for the children’s workshop and £40 for the adult workshops.
An Audience With Father Christmas on selected dates between Saturday 16th and Friday 22nd December, tickets cost £17 for adults and children (0-12 years) to include a small gift.

For further details and to book online: https://www.holkham.co.uk/events/christmas-at-holkham/introduction

Marston’s brewery goes back to its ‘grain’ roots with winter barley from the Holkham Estate

Marston’s Brewery have partnered with the Holkham Estate in north Norfolk to provide the grain for Marston’s beer. This agreement ensures that the grain will cover a large proportion of Burton’s malt and will be used as the backbone supply for Marston’s beers.

When Marston’s Brewery first announced that they were focussing on ‘From Burton with Love’, their plan was to stick to it. For them it was more than a marketing campaign, it was about stripping everything back to the DNA of what makes Marston’s Brewery, Marston’s Brewery. Focussing on its beers, the brand have been looking into the four main components of what makes their beers extra special and have taken steps to working with suppliers whose ideals and practices echo Marston’s Brewery’s continual strive for quality, above all else.

A perfect marriage between Marston’s Brewery and Holkham’s farms was confirmed when the Marston’s brewing team visited the Holkham Estate with its long tradition of growing both winter and spring barley for the brewing industry. Marston’s got the opportunity to go back to the roots of the source and to see first-hand the crop that helps to shape their beer range. The contract has been driven by local maltsters, Crisp Malting Group at Great Ryburgh, Norfolk, who helped secure the exclusive contract between Holkham and Marston’s and who will malt the barley from the Holkham Estate before it is used to brew Marston’s beer.

As the backbone of a great beer, and giving it much of its flavour and appearance, the grain is a pivotal ingredient that, when brewed, ferments into alcohol. For Marston’s Brewery it was key that they had the best supply and with that, they took to north Norfolk in East Anglia, for its perfect maritime, micro-climate to select their grain from the Holkham Estate, bringing it over 140 miles back to the spiritual home of brewing in Burton.

Patrick McGinty, Head Brewer at Marston’s Brewery said: “It was fantastic to meet such a great team and people who are so passionate about their product as much as we are. Our whole focus is built around ‘From Burton with Love’ and what better way to celebrate this than taking the grain from the heart of crop agriculture to the heart of Burton brewing.”

James Beamish, Holkham’s Farm Manager added: “The Holkham Estate is considered to be the birthplace of modern agriculture, with Thomas William Coke, the 1st Earl of Leicester, better known as Coke of Norfolk, renowned for championing innovation in agriculture in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Today farming at Holkham adopts many of Coke’s principles and we are encouraged that through the partnership to supply Marston’s with malting barley, we will be able to work with Holkham’s tenant farmers to secure their long-term sustainability for the estate in the barley industry. The soil and climate here are ideal for growing superlative malting barley and we are confident that our product fits well with Marston’s values for provenance and quality.”

The agreement ensures that the grain will cover a large proportion of Burton’s malt and will be used as the backbone supply for Marston’s beers. The agreement, set to extend past the 2019 harvest, and will use classics such as Pedigree and 61 Deep, to newer innovative beers coming out of the micro-brewery, DE14.

Sustainable practice, with a real strive for quality in all areas, is a big part of Marston’s brewing process, with heritage and innovation playing major parts. Looking towards helping to complete a lifecycle of the grain, Marston’s Brewery’s efficiency initiative includes utilising the by-product of the grain after the brewery process which is collected and sent to local farmers to be used as highly nutritious cattle feed.

2017 North Norfolk Food and Drink Festival – this weekend!

The 2017 North Norfolk Food and Drink Festival, one of the region’s premier local produce events, will take place in the splendid Walled Garden of the Holkham Estate this weekend on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd September by kind permission of the Earl and Countess of Leicester.

Attracting around 10,000 visitors in 2016, this year’s festival will welcome 55 stall holders to the two-day celebration. The range of produce on sale will include local real ales, fresh meat, vegetables, honey, fruit, ice cream, cheese, juices, cakes, puddings, tarts and much more, all grown, reared, caught, produced or sold in North Norfolk. Entry to the festival is free but a car parking charge applies. Just outside the Walled Garden a food court area will provide everyone attending the event with outstanding local food and drink for consumption on-site. Nine concessions will take part including Arthur Howell offering his famous hog roast, Duck Truck with fragrant pancakes, Fruit Pig Co. with sausages in buns and the Malt Coast Brewery with fine artisan beer, to name but a few.

It is all about the producers - the festival showcases its stallholders and celebrates their success and is delighted to showcase Winbirri’s ‘Bacchus 2015’ wine which won the Platinum Best in Show medal at Decanter for best value white wine made from a single grape variety. Also, local coffee roaster Grey Seal based at Cley along the coast, has won eight Great Taste Awards in 2017. Enjoy their coffee in the concession area. New entrant ‘Malt Coast’ Brewery uses locally grown, award-winning, malting barley to create craft beer which is unfiltered and unpasteurised for a fuller taste. Visitors will have the chance to try IPA in bottles and Pale Ale in cans. Butcher to top London chefs, The Fruit Pig Co, has launched a rosemary and garlic salami and are just about to launch a 3rd beef jerky. Their other two flavoured jerkys both have two great taste award stars. Essence Foods, also known for their mustards under the ’Montys’ brand has launched ‘Beetella’- a healthy and delicious chocolate beetroot spread -no palm oil, nuts, lecithin and reduced sugar when compared to other products which might end in ’tella’! This innovative product contains cocoa butter, coconut oil and a high cocoa percentage dark chocolate.

The ever popular Cookery Theatre in its trade-mark octagonal tent will see demonstrations from an exceptional line-up of chefs which includes Richard Bainbridge of Benedicts, Norwich, Richard Hughes of the Assembly House, Chris Coubrough of the Flying Kiwi Inns in partnership with Arthur Howell of Howell’s Butchers and Fran Hartshorn of The White Horse at Brancaster to name but a few. The Cookery Theatre is organised and hosted by Mary Kemp. A full list of who will be participating can be found on the festival website. Demos start at 11am each day.

As well as being headline sponsor Kettle Foods will once again be offering a business mentoring prize of £1000 to one of the attending stall holders. Emily Norton of Nortons Dairy, last year’s winner says:

“The business mentoring prize from Kettle Foods has been great for Nortons Dairy in our 10th anniversary year. Seeing how an established champion of Norfolk food operates and innovates has been inspiring for us as we look to grow our own business. Kettle Foods have been truly generous in offering this support and I hope our businesses will remain friends for a long time to come.”

Ashley Hicks, Kettle Foods MD says “I highly recommend a visit to the festival; it’s a great opportunity to try some of the best food and drink that our region has to offer. Whilst you’re there, make sure you come to the ‘Create & Donate’ area on the Kettle stall and have a go at making your own limited edition potato chips in aid of our local charity partner, The Feed.”

The Feed is a social enterprise based in Norwich that supports homeless people and vulnerable adults to find their confidence again and get back into employment. It uses food as a catalyst to inspire and motivate people to achieve and live a more fulfilling life.

A new initiative this year is the Kinnerton Cake Competition running across both days. The public are invited to make a cake and bring it to the Chairman’s tent. The only requirement is that it contains chocolate in it or on it. Entries must be in by 12 noon on both days. Saturday’s entrants must be 14 years or over and Sunday is for under 14’s. Winners receive a fancy mixer!

The North Norfolk Food and Drink Festival is organised by a festival committee.

Festival gates open at 10am and close at 4pm. Holkham park, the Field to Fork Experience, the Courtyard Café and Gift Shop and children’s woodland adventure play area are open both days from 10am to 5pm. Holkham Hall is open on Sunday 3rd September from 12 noon until 4pm (last entry).

21st August 2017 - Radio Riddler to support Reggae Legends UB40 at Holkham Hall on Sunday 27 August

LHG Live and Live Promotions are thrilled to announce Reggae band Radio Riddler as support act for UB40 on Sunday 27th August at Holkham Hall in north Norfolk; one of England’s grandest stately homes. This is UB40, featuring original members Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue with their fantastic eight-piece reggae backing band.

Radio Riddler is a six-piece Reggae band formed by Brian Fast Leiser and Frank Benbini from Fun Lovin’ Criminals, lovers of Reggae/Dub music. Having spent many years remixing diverse artists with their own unique Reggae/Dub style, their first EP release Marvin Reggae featured five of Marvin Gaye’s most beloved songs, which they produced with acapella’s of Marvin’s voice. This was followed up with the release of a compilation of their favourite remixes Dubplates Volume 1 and Radio Riddler’s debut full length album Purple Reggae in 2014 to great acclaim – released to coincide with the 30th anniversary of Prince’s Purple Rain. Guest vocalists included Suggs, Ali Campbell, Sinead O’Connor and Beverly Knight, amongst many others. Their performance at Holkham Hall will see them bringing their back catalogue and favourite tracks to the stage.

Brian Fast Leiser of Radio Riddler said “We are a Reggae mix outfit and we love Reggae. It’s in our blood and remixing and dubbing are great creative outlets for us…to play around with tracks and come up with something special and unique to our style. We are thrilled to be able to share our music with the audience at Holkham Hall.” His fellow band founder Frank Benbini said “We have worked with Ali Campbell previously and UB40 are true legends so we are looking forward to a cracking night at a great location, and to bringing our Purple Reggae Prince vibe to Norfolk.”

Ali Campbell of UB40 said, “Radio Riddler are great friends of ours and they always do an incredible job of warming up the crowd for us, you’re in for a treat. Holkham Hall is a stunning venue and we cannot wait to see everyone there for the concert. Big love.”

Since reuniting three years ago, Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue have developed into a formidable touring outfit. 2016 saw them return to the States, play Australia and visit the vineyards of New Zealand for a Red Red Winery Tour. They also made an emotional return to UK in April 2016, when they performed songs from the first two Labour Of Love albums on an arena tour that included sell-out shows at London’s O2 Arena, the Brighton Centre and the Barclaycard Arena in their native Birmingham. 2017 has seen them continue to delight fans all over UK as they delivered their GRANDSLAM summer tour, covering 13 venues this summer and bringing their inimitable pop and reggae hits to the stage. Their performance at Holkham Hall in north Norfolk on Sunday 27 August will see them bring their most popular songs to the stage as their summer touring comes to a close.

Colin Ward MD of Live Promotions, Promoter said, “We have worked with Holkham Hall for several years on a number of very successful concerts and are delighted to be bringing one of the world’s greatest bands, UB40 featuring Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue to Norfolk with LHG Live, in August. This will be a fantastic show and appeals to all ages. We are very excited to now announce Radio Riddler as support act who we are certain will prove very popular.”

The Earl and Countess of Leicester commented, “Our second concert in 2017 welcoming UB40 featuring Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue over the August bank holiday returns to the south park, which has always been a popular setting for our audience. The announcement that Radio Riddler will open the evening is a perfect choice.”

Liz Doogan-Hobbs MBE, CEO of LHG Live, promoters for the Grandslam UB40 UK Tour said, “We are thrilled to be working with Holkham again and have no doubt that this UB40 concert – featuring Ali Campbell, Astro and Mickey Virtue will prove very popular; they are one of the best bands around to see live, and what a beautiful setting to perform in! The beautiful outdoor spaces at Holkham Hall are perfectly placed to offer an incredible backdrop for this summer concert, and the announcement of Radio Riddler completes the line-up. It’s going to be a brilliant Reggae evening, perfect for the summer.”

Artist Links: Radio Riddler
Twitter - @RadioRiddler
Facebook - www.facebook.com/RadioRiddler
UB40
Twitter – @WeAreUB40
Facebook - www.facebook.com/UB40
Website -www.UB40.org

10th August 2017 - North Norfolk Food and Drink Festival at Holkham

The 2017 North Norfolk Food and Drink Festival, one of the region’s premier local produce events, will take place in the grounds of Holkham Hall on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd September. We are delighted that stallholders, food concessions and sponsors will gather in and around the historic Walled Garden to celebrate local food and drink. Now in its eighth year the committee continues to work closely with the team at Holkham to deliver an outstanding event in a stunning rural setting.

Last year the North Norfolk Food and Drink Festival attracted around 10,000 visitors. This year it will welcome 50 stall holders to this two day celebration and aims to attract a similar number of visitors as in 2016.

The range of produce on sale will include real ales, fresh meat and poultry, local seafood, vegetables, local honey, fruit, ice cream, cheese, fresh juices, cakes, puddings and tarts and much more. To exhibit and sell all products must be grown, reared, caught, produced or sold in North Norfolk. Just outside the Walled Garden a food court area will provide everyone attending the event with outstanding local food and drink for consumption on site. Around eight concessions will take part including Arthur Howell offering his famous hog roast, the Fruit Pig Co. with award winning sausages and Morston Mud Inns with seafood. Entry for the general public is free but a car parking charge applies.

The ever popular Cookery Theatre in its trade-mark octagonal tent will see demonstrations from this year’s wonderful line-up of chefs. The Cookery Theatre is organised and hosted by Mary Kemp, famous for promoting Norfolk food and chefs. A full list of who will be participating will be published in August.

For the seventh year running the organisers are delighted to announce Kettle Foods, producer of KETTLE® Chips, as headline sponsor. Ashley Hicks, Kettle Foods MD says “We really enjoy being part of this celebration of local produce and offering support to the attending stall holders via our business mentoring prize. As well as trying and buying some fantastic food and drink products, we encourage visitors to come to the ‘Create & Donate’ area on the Kettle stall and have a go at making their own limited edition potato chips in aid of our local community partner, The Feed.”

The Feed is a social enterprise based in Norwich that supports homeless people and vulnerable adults to find their confidence again and get back into employment. It uses food as a catalyst to inspire and motivate people to achieve and live a more fulfilling life.

In addition to its sponsorship, Kettle Foods is once again offering a business mentoring prize of £1000 to one of the attending stallholders to help them develop their products. In 2016 this prize was won by local cheese, yoghurt and milk producer, Nortons’ Dairy. Winners from previous years include Candi’s Chutney, Essence Foods and Bread Source.

Chris Coubrough of The Flying Kiwi Inns says “Kettle Foods has underpinned the success of our festival and we are delighted to be working in partnership again with this nationally recognised and respected local company”.

A new initiative this year is the Kinnerton Cake Competition running across both days. The public are invited to make a cake and bring it to the Chairman’s tent. The only requirement is that it contains chocolate in it or on it. Entries must be in by 12 noon on both days. Saturday’s entrants must be 14 years or over and Sunday is for under 14’s. Winners receive a fancy mixer!

The North Norfolk Food and Drink Festival is organised by a Festival Committee. Festivals such as this are supported by a county wide organisation: Norfolk Food and Drink Ltd.

Festival gates open at 10am and close at 4pm. Holkham Hall is open on the Sunday from 12 noon until 4pm (last entry). Holkham Park is open both days from 10am to 5pm.

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