Hundreds join in the fun at the first ever apple festival is held in village

IMPRESSED From left Isaac McDonald, Charlie Prior, Earnest Spencer, Aimee Walker and Maddie Prior with the apples they were pressing            '''''''              Picture: Allan Hutchings (142954-645)
IMPRESSED From left Isaac McDonald, Charlie Prior, Earnest Spencer, Aimee Walker and Maddie Prior with the apples they were pressing ''''''' Picture: Allan Hutchings (142954-645)

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CORE blimey! The first Denmead Apple Festival has been hailed a success after hundreds of people attended.

Bobbing for apples, cider tasting, apple pressing and cookery competitions were among a raft of attractions at the village on Saturday.

Children from Denmead Infant and Denmead Junior schools coloured and decorated paper apples in competitions, which adorned big paper trees created especially for the event.

Children could also try their hand at apple pressing and taste the juice they made, The Bakehouse at Denmead offered pork and apple sauce baps and the Co-op had apple juice from Hill Farm Orchards in Droxford on offer.

The festival hosted a competition in the style of the Great British Bake-Off, with categories including apple crumble, apple pie and apple cake.

There was a prize for the heaviest apple and children got the chance to design a ‘Mr Applehead’.

Janine Pert, who opened Discovery Wines in the village about six months ago, had a cider tasting for visitors.

The festival was part of a drive to attract more visitors to the village and showcase the shops there.

She said: ‘We set five gazebos up. We had an apple press so that the children could watch how the press works and help turn it so they could understand that the apples were being pressed and that caused the juice to freely run.

‘They all got a taste of the juice they were pressing. We had apple bobbing which the kids loved.

‘It was an old-fashioned, free day out for the family.

‘At 2pm we had the judging and chef David Barnard from Barnard’s Coffee House and Restaurant and Fiona, the assistant manager from the Co-op were our Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry. There was a prize for apple crumble, apple pie and apple cake. The children could do a Mr Applehead and there was the heaviest apple.

‘We had several hundred people throughout the day.’