Fundraising fete and food festival bring out crowds

Plenty to sample - try and buy at this popular stall in the Food Festival.  Southsea International Food festival in full swing in Palmerston Road and Osborne Road, Southsea, with a world of flavours and cultures there, to be sampled by the thousands of visitors who came to the popular event.  PICTURE: MICHAEL SCADDAN (112198-0048)
Plenty to sample - try and buy at this popular stall in the Food Festival. Southsea International Food festival in full swing in Palmerston Road and Osborne Road, Southsea, with a world of flavours and cultures there, to be sampled by the thousands of visitors who came to the popular event. PICTURE: MICHAEL SCADDAN (112198-0048)
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CUISINE from around the world tempted the palate of people at Southsea Food Festival.

The annual event took place over the weekend and saw scores of people come along and sample different foods.

Stalls were selling culinary treats from countries including Italy, Spain, Germany, Thailand and France.

Sarah Adams, of Bonchurch Road, Milton, was at the festival.

The 37-year-old, who works in IT sales, said: ‘I came with my friend to see what was going on and we’re glad we came.

‘The festival’s great because you get to try different foods and see what’s on offer.’

The event, which is organised by Portsmouth City Council, takes over part of Palmerston Road and Osborne Road over two days.

Lexa Wokersien, 33, of Winton Road, Southsea, said: ‘This was my first time at this food festival and I thought it was good.

‘It’s relaxed, there’s lots to try and the live music was entertaining.’

And yesterday Hampshire Farmers’ Market joined in with the fun.

City council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson said: ‘There were so many people at the event, I was impressed.

‘If it’s that successful then maybe we should look at having it more than once a year.’

And scores of people also packed out a summer fete fundraiser for St John Ambulance. Portsmouth-born Emma Barton – best known for her role as Honey in EastEnders – was at the event in Hurstville Drive, Waterlooville, on Saturday.

Activities included stalls, face painting, a bouncy castle, barbecue and a bake sale.

The event’s aim was to raise £3,000 for a new building where the team can be based. The current building consists of two temporary cabins, that are damp and in a state of disrepair.

Ms Barton, who grew up in Horndean, has seen first-hand the benefits St John crews can have on the community as her father is a volunteer with the Waterlooville group.

She said: ‘It’s so important for people in the community to know that they are being looked after and St John Ambulance is a vital part of that because they are always there.’

The voluntary ambulance crews are hoping to raise enough to buy two new cabins to replace the old ones and run first aid training for the public from the new facility.

The existing huts were inherited from a school and only had an expected lifespan of five years – and that was more than 10 years ago.

Sean Crook, divisional superintendent, said: ‘We are unsure how much longer we can stay here before the building is condemned.’