This September, The Royal Parks will be hosting a free Harvest Festival at two of its allotment sites - Sunday 7 September at Kensington Gardens Allotment and Sunday 21 September at Regent's Park Allotment Garden.
Harvest Festival is an annual celebration that occurs around the time of the main harvest of a given region. In Britain this typically occurs in September, and traditionally the festival is held on a Sunday.
Kensington Gardens' Harvest Festival will take place on Sunday 7 September, 11am-4pm, and promises to be a great family day out. Kids can roll up their sleeves and get involved in the harvesting process by digging up potatoes in the allotment. Afterwards, at the arts and craft section they can transform their crop into 'potato people'. Other children's activities will include face painting, a story telling marquee, and a mobile petting farm provided by Miller's Ark Animals. Complimentary hot and cold drinks will be provided throughout the day, while stocks last.
On 21 September, from 11am-5pm, Regent's Park Allotment Garden will host their annual Harvest Festival. A clay oven has been built especially for the occasion, so visitors can make their own pizzas using fresh produce from the allotment. Entertainment will include live folk music, a children's treasure hunt and the popular 'guess the weight of the pumpkin' competition.
On both days' experts from The Royal Parks Guild – The Royal Parks alumni society - will be on site to answer any questions about food growing. Visitors can take away a variety of produce from both allotments for a small donation, including seasonal vegetables, potted herbs, homemade jams, and lavender bags. All donations are reinvested into the allotments.
Colin Buttery, Deputy Chief Executive for The Royal Parks said:
"Aside from being a great family day out, the Harvest Festivals at the demonstration allotments, provide the perfect opportunity to discover more about the excitement and enjoyment of growing your own food. I hope that people will be inspired to grow their own vegetables and herbs at home whether that is in a garden, on a balcony or even in a window box. Wherever people can find space to grow, there will be lots of advice on hand on how to get started"
Kensington Gardens' Allotment host regular 'Ask the Expert Days' and Regent's Park Allotment Garden offer training sessions on food growing via Capital Growth –London's food growing network.