Honiton Gate to Plate whetting appetites with plans for late summer return

  Posted: 18.06.21 at 15:06 by Hannah Corfield

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Honiton Gate to Plate returns for its third year in August. This annual street market celebrates all the fantastic food and craft on our doorstep here in East Devon.

It is set to take place on the High Street on Saturday 21 August.

This year it will be delivered by eat:Festivals who are working to the latest guidelines and guidance regarding Covid-19. Their aim is to showcase Honiton's businesses alongside the best of the district's food and drink producers, as well as traditional crafts people.

The team is mindful of people’s reservations and nervousness about venturing out. They have introduced a new layout offering more space between producers; hand sanitiser stations; extra precautions for producers and a click and collect service to reduce dwell time.

Event organiser Sarah Milner Simonds told us: “Markets are part of the fabric of towns and cities across the UK. They are the starting point for many low-risk business start-ups and have a major role to play in the aftermath of Covid-19.

"We know our events generate environmental and economic benefits by supporting family producers and farmers. We need to help their micro and small business stay afloat during this transition to the new normal for the sake of the local economic wellbeing and long term visions of vibrant town centres."

Photo: eat:Festivals

Beverley Milner Simonds, co-organiser added: “The nature of the town centre location means that social distancing can be easier than within an enclosed shop.

"We are thinking of this ‘new normal’ as an alternative open-air food supermarket, well stocked with fresh produce, essential food and some treats too.

Food markets have been classed as ‘essential’ since the start of the pandemic and we have altered our operating model to focus on local produce market elements and keep the entertainment elements low key, inline with the roadmap for reopening.

We will have measures in place to minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission. We are asking visitors to keep local, plan their visit and abide by the latest government advice.”

The team offered their thanks to East Devon District Council and Honiton Town Council for their support.

Photo: eat:Festivals

Diversions on the day will be in place in the town from 7am to 7pm and the event runs from 10am - 4pm and is free to attend

eat:Festivals are led by Bev and Sarah Milner Simonds – two women on a mission to reconnect residents with the productive landscape that surrounds them.

The social enterprise started in 2012 in their hometown of Burnham-on-Sea and has grown steadily now hosting over 25 events in Somerset, Devon, South Gloucestershire and Dorset each year.

Traders who had only just started out when the pandemic restrictions hit were some of the hardest hit by the lack of events, so we are launching a new support initiative, Start Out Strong (SOS), to help them.

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