Bedford Park Festival Latest News

Calling all young bakers!

The Bedford Park Festival is looking for up to 18 ‘star bakers’ aged 8-12 years to enter its Bake-Off Challenge on Saturday June 12th.  It’s one of the highlights of the Children’s Fun Day that will open this year’s Festival in place of the annual Green Days weekend, which cannot be held because of COVID restrictions.

The Bake-Off Challenge is to produce 24 cookies or 12 fairy cakes, decorated with images of The Animal Kingdom – the Fun Day theme. The cakes will be assessed by a panel of judges, headed by cookery writer and broadcaster Jo Pratt (pictured), one of the team behind Chiswick’s Cookbook Kitchen and the monthly Chiswick Cheese Market – and a former parent at Orchard House School, which is sponsoring the event.

“It will be a fun, relaxed event and, while it’s a competition, it will primarily be about the enjoyment of cooking, so please encourage your young bakers to take part” says Christina Balmer, who is organising the Children’s Fun Day which will be held in St Michael & All Angels Parish Hall, from 12.30 to 2.30pm.

Entrants must provide their own ingredients and bring with them the utensils they need to use (mixing bowl, wooden spoon, rolling pin). Scales will be provided, but they can also bring their ingredients already measured out. The event will be held under COVID restrictions, and no more than 18 young bakers will be able to take part.

The entrants will have 20 minutes to prepare their mixtures which will then be baked in the oven (handled by the Festival’s kitchen team). After allowing time for the bakes to cool, entrants will have a further 20 minutes to decorate them ahead of the judging. The judges’ decision will be final! The cakes and cookies will then be sold on the Bake-Off Cake stall in aid of the church and its charities.

The Children’s Fun Day will begin with the annual Fancy Dress Parade – a highlight of the Bedford Park Festival for more than 50 years (see pictures). Children aged 10 and under are invited to dress up as members of The Animal Kingdom. The winners will receive book prizes from Trotters in Turnham Green Terrace and all entrants will be given ice cream vouchers from Fouberts.

There will also be fun fitness games with Reiss McGrath, the sports coach at Falcons Pre-Preparatory School, in two separate age categories. And in the Story Corner, there will be readings of Anthony Browne’s Ernest the Elephant and Gaspard’s Foxtrot, written by Radio 4 newsreader Zeb Soanes and illustrated by James Mayhew. (Illustration from Gaspard’s Foxtrot © James Mayhew). The Story Corner is supported by Chiswick & Bedford Park Preparatory School and Young Veterinary Partnership.

The Covers Are Off: Civil War at Lord’s – talk by Charles Sale on 17 June

Elsewhere, this week saw the publication of The Covers Are Off: Civil War at Lord’s by former Daily Mail sports columnist Charles Sale, prompting this headline in The Times: “Bitter feud over expansion of Lord’s stands revealed”. Charles will talk about the book on June 17th in St Michael & All Angels Church and ticket-holders can pre-order signed copies at the discount price of £12 (up till June 4th). The evening is supported by Whitman & Co, which also sponsors Chiswick Cricket Club.

Art and Photography exhibitions plus Flower Festival

There is still time for people (of all ages) to submit their artworks for the Bedford Park Summer Exhibition and the Photography Exhibition and to register entries for the Bedford Park Flower Festival on the theme ‘New Beginnings’, marking the 50th anniversary of the first Flower Festival.

The Bedford Park Festival runs from Saturday June 12th to Sunday June 27th. Full details of all Festival events, and how to enter and buy tickets, can be found at

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Bedford Park Festival Photography Competition 2021

See also: Fancy That!

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