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'Up and away' for Northampton's Balloon Festival

Last year's festival Credit: ITV News Anglia

Hot air balloons from all over the country will gather today for Northampton's annual Balloon Festival.

The popular event at Billing Aquadrome is celebrating its 27th anniversary.

Thousands of people are expected to attend over the weekend.

Northampton Balloon Festival 2015 Credit: ITV News Anglia

"The balloonists are excited about the annual event giving both local and others from further afield the chance to flying above the Northamptonshire countryside. This continues with the support provided by Billing Aquadrome for the last seven years, since the event moved from the Racecourse in 2009."

– Spokesperson for the balloon festival

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  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Heavy Metal Festival

Bloodstock 2016: Thurs 11th - Sun 14th Aug (Catton Park, Derbyshire)

More than 15,000 people are expected across the four day event Credit: Bloodstock Festival

Bloodstock Open Air is the UK’s biggest independent METAL festival and it’s taking place at the picturesque location of Walton on Trent in Derbyshire this weekend.

The event features more than a hundred international rock and metal acts across four stages, as well as other attractions including a huge international metal market, late night entertainment and fairground rides.

There’ll also be a signing tent where you can meet your favourite bands.

For times, prices and more information visit: http://www.bloodstock.uk.com/

  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Arts Festival

Sandwell Arts Festival: Sat 13th - Sun 14th Aug (Various locations, Sandwell & West Bromwich)

1,000 ceramic flowers will be on display Credit: Creative Black Country

West Bromwich town centre will come alive this weekend with performances, cinema, photography and giant Bumble bees.

Creative Black Country, in partnership with Sandwell Council and West Bromwich BID, have put together a programme of events for the Sandwell Arts Festival to transform the town.

As part of the project, more than 500 people from community groups across the region have helped the artistic team to make a stunning ceramic garden of over 1,000 flowers.

Birmingham’s Flatpack heads to the Black Country with a day of films at the Odeon and Town Hall.

Sandwell Arts Festival is the perfect opportunity to present the amazing work of our partners across the Black Country.

From the giant bees that buzz with our friends from Fab Lab; to storytelling and performance with Black Country Touring; film screenings with Flatpack; and photography with Multistory we’re bringing an international wealth of talent to West Bromwich.”

– Creative Black Country Artistic Director Parminder Dosanjh

For times, listings and more information visit: www.creativeblackcountry.co.uk

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  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Pie Festival

Pie Fest: Sat 13th - Sun 14th Aug (Melton Mowbray Cattle Market, Leicestershire)

Visitors will be able to sample, buy, eat and even learn how to make their own pies Credit: Leicester Shire Promotions Limited

A pie festival will take place in Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire this weekend.

Organisers are claiming it’s the first event of it’s kind and will feature around 40 exhibitors, evenly split between award-winning pie makers and local produce.

At this unique celebration of pies, visitors will be able to sample, buy, eat and even learn how to make their own pies. Gluten free pies will also be available.

PieFest will also include talks, tastings, demonstrations, workshops and a Pie Clinic where visitors can put their pie and pastry woes and queries to an expert panel of cooks and pie makers.

From being the home of the classic Melton Mowbray Pork Pie to hosting the annual British Pie Awards, Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire is regarded as the UK ‘Capital of Pies’ which makes it the ideal location for the first-ever UK PieFest in 2016.”

– Matthew O’Callaghan, Melton Mowbray Food Partnership

For times and more information visit: www.ukpiefest.co.uk

  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Countryside Show & Food Festival

Countryside Show & Food Festival: Sat 13th - Sun 14th Aug (Far Forest Society Pavilion, Worcestershire)

Highlights from the stunt display team include: Quad Stunts, Ramp Jumping, Fire Stunts Explosions and Trick Riding Credit: Far Forest Society

After a successful event in 2015, attracting around 10,000 visitors, the organisers of Far Forest Countryside Show and Food Festival are holding another event this weekend.

The countryside show and food festival will include a food festival marquee for live demonstrations, a homecraft & hobbies marquee and an art exhibition.

As well as the stages and tents, there will be live entertainment throughout the day in the Main Arena.

For times, prices and more information visit: http://www.farforestcountrysideshow.btck.co.uk/

  1. Maya Patel

Weekend Picks: Food & Drink Festival

Food & Drink Festival: Sat 13th - Sun 14th Aug (Wollaton Park, Nottingham)

There'll be entertainment for all the family Credit: Living Heritage Country Shows

Nottingham food and drink festival is back again for a second year this weekend.

The event will take place at Wollaton Park and organisers say it's going to be bigger and better than it's debut year.

Visitors will get the chance to browse, sample and buy a variety of food and drink produce, both from the local region and from the international community, as well as enjoying live music all weekend.

There’ll also be a Real Ale Marquee, crafts corner, chainsaw carving and plenty of children's entertainment.

The event has been a huge success for the past two years. With a fabulous weather forecast and an excellent line up of chefs which includes Marco Pierre White, Brian Turner, Valentine Warner, we expect this year to build on that success.”

– Mark Hulme, Organiser

For times and more information visit: http://livingheritagefoodfestivals.co.uk/nottingham/

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