Taste of success for UK tourism

David James, James Berresford and Steve Vardy at Taste Tideswell. Photo contributed.
David James, James Berresford and Steve Vardy at Taste Tideswell. Photo contributed.
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A pioneering project in the heart of the Peak District is helping to give Britain the edge in the world tourism market, the man charged by the Government with bringing more visitors to the UK has said.

Taste Tideswell, which aims to boost the local economy by developing artisan food production, is a prime example of how Britain’s unique character can be used to attract visitors vital to the economy.

With its cookery school and business advice, the project is designed to improve everyone’s expertise in growing, making, cooking, and selling good food, and aims to make the village famous, with a reputation summed up in a nationally known and trusted brand, Taste Tideswell.

And the project will be televised this summer as part of the BBC’s focus on villages vying for National Lottery funding.

Now the Chief Executive of Visit England, James Berresford has visited Tideswell School of Food to see what the Taste Tideswell project has achieved in the year since it receievd a BIG Lottery Fund grant of £400,000.

David James, Chief Executive of Visit Peak District and Derbyshire, joined James and directors of Taste Tideswell for a demonstration by Steve Vardy, Tideswell’s Head Chef.

Tideswell School of Food is soon to be featured in a new BBC One series, “Village SOS”, focusing on how its wide variety of cookery and brewing courses and corporate “awaydays” help to finance is community aims.

And Mr Berresford explained how local initiatives like Taste Tideswell could help UK plc in the global tourism market as countries had to sell themselves through their unique products.

“I’m always a huge supporter of local food because it does so much for distinctiveness,” said Mr Berresford, who was born in Chesterfield and lived in Bakewell.

“It’s still my spiriutal home,” he said.

The BBC have announced the confirmed transmission dates for Village SOS - later than had hoped but but at least the dates are now fixed.

The series starts on Wednesday, August 10 at 8pm on BBC One . You can see how the programme is being described hat http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/proginfo/tv/2011/wk32/

Tideswell’s story will be told in the fifth programme in the series- due to air on Wednesday, September 7 at 8pm BBC One.

“Although this is five months after we had hoped to be on air, and late in the series,” said a spokesman.

“We hope that the audience will have grown thoroughout the series, especially as we will be on air at the end of school holidays.”