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Tom Kerridge on his training routine and bringing Pub in the Park to Marlow

PUBLISHED: 11:20 27 March 2018 | UPDATED: 11:20 27 March 2018

Tom Kerridge at the Hand & Flowers (Photo by Maureen McLean)

Tom Kerridge at the Hand & Flowers (Photo by Maureen McLean)

Maureen McLean

Tom Kerridge is going ‘on tour’ but his fabulous celebrations naturally begin with a not-to-be missed long weekend in Marlow

If you hadn’t witnessed Tom Kerridge’s physical transformation – sometimes close up, at other times on our TV screens – you’d wonder where he gets the energy to plate spin the only things still expanding, namely his ‘empire’ and work schedule.

At 44, Marlow’s food and drink champion not only added The Butcher’s Tap in High Street (a fascinating mix of a traditional butchers and bar with British foodie favourites) in November to the portfolio including the stunning Hand & Flowers and now also Michelin-starred The Coach, but he’s been a busy bee at the start of this year with the BBC2 series ‘Tom Kerridge’s Lose Weight For Good’, mentoring a group of local dieters.

Tom, of course, has himself ditched 12 stone - almost half his body weight – by going ‘low-carb’, reducing his calorie intake, cutting out alcohol and hitting the gym. And he’s still at it: “I aim for six hours of weight training a week with three sessions of two hours, and three swims as well.”

On top of all this there’s the release of his latest book to go alongside the TV series and his bespoke kitchenware and homeware lines. While all that’s going on, Tom is wrapped up in his latest project and, unlike him, it’s a biggie.

Last year he headed up Marlow’s first Pub in the Park festival, a grand mix of top chefs, food and drink treats and first class music. It turned out to be a magical recipe beside the Thames and all 18,000 tickets sold out in a day. There’s no doubt that this is the 2018 hottest ticket in town.

How to top that? He’s taking Pub in the Park on tour this year, visiting four English towns across the country, bringing his Michelin-starred pubs, plus a selection of other top UK pubs and restaurants to serve their most popular dishes. Every event will celebrate the very best food the country has to offer, combined with great live music, chef demonstrations, top quality shopping and other festival fun. On top of the national chef and music names, each event will celebrate the local community in the form of brilliant local artisans, pubs, local foodie heroes and musicians.

Of course Marlow remains the home fixture for this fan of the town’s football club, and the expanded festival launches in Higginson Park there, running from 17 to 20 May 2018 before heading off on the road.

Tom says: “I am delighted to be able to share the magic of Pub in the Park with the beautiful British places of Bath, Tunbridge Wells and Knutsford. Expect great food, brilliant music and an ace day out.”

Seems to us that you could follow Tom and his pals across country for a summer of food and fun, hopefully in the sun, but we’re queuing up first for Pub in the Park Marlow which will include two Michelin-starred The Hand & Flowers and The Coach (Tom Kerridge), Pony & Trap (Josh Eggleton) and Paul Ainsworth at No 6 (Paul Ainsworth), which also hold Michelin stars.

Joining them will be National Restaurant Award-winner The Hardwick (Stephen Terry), multi-Rosette winner Sindhu (Atul Kochhar) and the deluxe re-imagining of the Great British pub, The Wigmore (Chris King). The Star Inn (Andrew Pern) an award-winning gastropub that champions local, seasonal ingredients as well as Berners Tavern, the highly decorated and celebrated London gem under the direction of Michelin-starred Jason Atherton, and Heston Blumenthal’s highly acclaimed gastropub The Crown at Bray (Matt Larcombe) will all appear.

Then there’s the music, in a line up which continues to grow. Tom reveals: “Already signed up are KT Tunstall, Razorlight, Mel C, Jamie Cullum, Texas, Will Young and Stereo MCs.”

If you want to follow Pub in the Park to Tunbridge Wells from 6 to 8 July 2018 the chefs include the Tanner brothers with the award-winning Kentish Hare, and The Sportsman (Stephen Harris), which recently made the top 50 list in the 2017 Good Food Guide, and much-loved Michelin-starred and TV Chef Angela Hartnett MBE.

Before that Angela will also be bringing Café Murano to Pub in the Park Bath from 8 to 10 June 2018, alongside a host of award-winning establishments. Pub in the Park Knutsford from 7 to 9 September 2018 will also showcase The Star Inn (Andrew Pern) and Angela Hartnett’s Café Murano as well as Michelin-starred and multi award winning family-run The Pipe and Glass (James Mackenzie) and country tavern The Church Inn.

Tom, of course, will also be at Tunbridge Wells and Knutsford and you’ll also see Candice Brown, winner of the Great British Bake Off 2016. Pub in the Park supports Hospitality Action, Tom Kerridge’s chosen charity, which offers vital assistance to all who work, or have worked within hospitality in the UK and who find themselves in crisis.


Pub in the Park

• Marlow, Higginson Park - 17-20 May

• Bath, Royal Victoria Park - 8-10 June

• Tunbridge Wells, Dunorlan Park - 6-8 July

• Knutsford, The Heath - 7-9 September

Tickets start at £25 for adult afternoon, child six to 15 £15, plus family deals, with VIP packages for £75 (afternoon), £95 (evening). Adult all weekend tickets are £185.


More…

Tom Kerridge on why Marlow has become his home and everything he loves about Buckinghamshire - Celebrated chef Tom Kerridge explains why Marlow has become his home, with nervous energy in the kitchen spreading to the terraces of the town’s football club

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