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Seafood in the Forest

English fizz & lobster mac n'cheese? Oh go on then, you've twisted our arm. Muddy checks out the fantastic Lymington Seafood Festival.

So you thought the New Forest was all about the, er, forest? Wrong.

Yes, though we love the wild ponies, ancient oaks and semi-legal food foraging — we’ve also got a thing for the oft’ overlooked coastline skirting Hampshire’s world-famous woodland.

That’s why Team Muddy Hants has block booked the weekend of 11 August, and you should too. Why hello there Lymington Seafood Festival.

Families eating in the sunshine.

We’ll be donning our floatiest tea dresses and our on point-est straw bags to waft around this celebration of all things fruit de mer, now in its second year; a cool 15,ooo people visited in 2017.

Expect Hampshire & Dorset seafood producers galore: lobster mac n’cheese, scallops, cockle popcorn, soft shell crab, shrimp burgers, oysters… all washed down with a good selection of *ahem* beverages: Hampshire fizz from Exton Park Vineyard, beer from Ringwood Brewery, local gin, plus live music and the Solent stretching to the horizon behind you. Dreamy.

Festival live music performance.

Oh and sorry did we mention the demo kitchen? It’s led by The Jetty’s Chef Patron, Alex Aitken, plus fourteen talented kitchen Maestros including Matt Tomkinson from the Montagu Arms and Chewton Glen’s Luke Matthews. Also appearing will be 2016 MasterChef winner: Jane Devonshire, something festival Event Director, Domine Nowell, is delighted about. [Read: My Favourite Places with Jane Devonshire]

Queueing for seafood.

Fish not your thing? Fear not. There will be plenty of non-seafood stalls amongst the 85 local food producers taking part as well as an arts and crafts market.

It’s all for a brilliant cause as well. This year’s festival charity is Sail 4 Cancer which provides sailing respite breaks for families affected by cancer.


The sensible stuff:

Due to the success and numbers attending, the council is providing parking at Woodside Park for around 700 vehicles that will help ease traffic congestion.

For more information and to keep updated, visit or follow its Facebook and Instagram pages @lymingtonseafoodfestival.


Words: Muddy Hants Ed, Mary Malyon

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