The developers behind Rochdale Riverside, the borough's major new retail and leisure destination, have teamed up with Rochdale Food & Drink Festival.
Genr8's flagship Rochdale town centre scheme, adjacent to the Metrolink and transport interchange, opens next month and comprises retail units, restaurants, a 6-screen cinema, indoor mini golf and outdoor public spaces. Genr8 Developments will be an official partner of the festival when it is staged at the town hall on Saturday, 4 April 2020.
With the scheme due to launch the following week with an event scheduled for Friday, 10 April 2020, the festival is the perfect partnership said Mike Smith, partner at Genr8 Developments:
"The countdown is well underway to our launch next month, but with Rochdale Food & Drink Festival happening the weekend before, we thought it was a perfect event to get involved with. We are proud to sponsor such a popular festival which brings the town centre alive and families together. This partnership also gives us a chance to tell people a little more about Rochdale Riverside and remind everyone about our opening on Good Friday when you are all invited to explore the site and enjoy the fun."
Full details of the opening day at Rochdale Riverside are still to be revealed, but already confirmed is lots of FREE family entertainment and a stage show hosted by television and radio star Gemma Atkinson and Wes Butters from Hits Radio UK.
Brands such as Marks & Spencer, Next, H&M, River Island, Boots, JD Sports, Heavenly Desserts, Superdrug and Nandos will all open stores within the new retail and leisure scheme. The development will also boast a 6-screen REEL cinema as well as Puttstars, a new concept by Hollywood Bowl featuring 3 9-hole mini golf courses. The scheme also includes a 520-space car park.
Councillor Janet Emsley, cabinet member for neighbourhoods, community and culture at Rochdale Borough Council visited the site this week to see progress and said:
"Rochdale town centre has been completely transformed in recent years and this latest development represents another huge step forward. I was very impressed to see how well everything is coming together, the quality of the work and I'm sure I speak for many when I say I'm excited that it will soon be open. Without the sponsorship and support of businesses, we wouldn't be able to host the festival so a big thank you to Genr8.
"And of course, with Rochdale Food & Drink Festival and Dippy the Dinosaur in town, April is shaping up nicely. At the festival we'll have something for everyone – amazing cuisine from all over the world, a feast of live music, lots of family fun, top local chefs plus national names Chris Bavin and Stefan Gates. We're also welcoming some new traders this year."
Television presenter Chris Bavin will be hosting the festival, introducing local favourite Andrew Nutter, Tom McNeeney from The Oxford, Adolfus Lewis from The Hare on the Hill in Littleborough and Noo Meenan from Rochdale's Thai food experts Issan Friends. The Festival Kitchen will be located inside Rochdale town hall along with stalls and activities. There'll be an outside food and drink village, an indoor seating area to watch chef demonstrations on screen plus a live music stage and other activities.
On the Family Stage, TV presenter and Gastronaut Stefan Gates will be performing his shows – promising hilarious, mind-blowing edible adventures with food and science stunts including food rockets, edible chemical reactions, magical colour-changing cocktails and more.
There'll also be lots on offer at nearby local pubs, bars and restaurants, including children's pizza making workshops at The Mannerist, gin tasting, cookie decorating and a sausage eating competition at the Medicine Tap, plus a wine, cheese and cider workshop at The Baum.
Rochdale Food & Drink Festival is on Saturday 4 April 2020, open from 11am to 6pm. Entry is FREE.