Thames Festival – Feast on the Bridge

Last Saturday, Mrs. LF and I had a wonderful brunch at The Table Cafe in Southwark en route to Borough Market, where we were picking up some long awaited pork. As we were strolling over to the market, we kept noticing people walking past us with lots of appetizing treats in their hands. At first, I thought they must all be coming from Borough Market, but then as we looked down the street leading from Southwark Street to Southwark Bridge, there appeared to be something much larger going on. We moved in closer to investigate.

It turned out the entire bridge had been closed, and in place of the cars, there were hordes of people basking in the sun, enjoying a range of food and drink from an interesting mix of suppliers and huge long tables stretching nearly the entire length of the bridge. Yes, it was ‘Feast on the Bridge‘, part of the Mayor’s Thames Festival. I had seen it advertised somewhere a few weeks earlier but had totally forgotten about it. And now we were smack bang in the middle of it. The only bad thing was that we had just gorged ourselves at brunch, so didn’t have much room left in our stomachs. Next year, I will make sure to plan ahead and come running on empty.

But it was a feast for the eyes just as much as for the belly, and below are a few photos we took as we walked up and down the bridge. There are also a few photos of Borough Market and the surrounding areas towards the end. If you want to see the full resolution images, just click on any of the pictures.

Let the feast begin - a list of half the purveyors at the big event on Southwark Bridge

Let the feast begin - a list of half the purveyors at the big event on Southwark Bridge

This was the longest table I've ever seen! Amazing atmosphere on a sunny Saturday in London. What was really nice is that nothing looked cheap; even the chairs had an interesting design, and the whole thing was a much more polished affair than I've seen at other UK street fairs/markets. Well done to the organizers.

This was the longest table I've ever seen! Amazing atmosphere on a sunny Saturday in London

Another view of the extremely long table - looking back from the other end of the bridge...so cool!

Another view of the extremely long table - looking back from the other end of the bridge...so cool! The very cool & interesting tablecloths, which represented food stories collected from Londoners, were designed by Sophie Herxheimer (http://www.sophieherxheimer.com)

We had a spectacular view of St. Paul's from the bridge...

We had a spectacular view of St. Paul's from the bridge...

Detail of Table

What was really nice is that nothing looked cheap; even the chairs had an interesting design, and the whole thing was a much more polished affair than I've seen at other UK street fairs/markets. Well done to the organizers

I just loved the way these crates full of red organic apples looked

I just loved the way these crates full of red organic apples looked

Before: a lovely looking roast pig on a spit

Before: a lovely looking roast pig on a spit

After: it looked so appetizing, it was all gone pretty quickly :)

After: it looked so appetizing, it was all gone pretty quickly🙂

This beautiful shiny metal ice cream van was turning out some good looking treats (fyi it was from http://www.westonbirticecream.co.uk)

This beautiful shiny metal ice cream van was turning out some good looking treats (fyi it was from http://www.westonbirticecream.co.uk)

Ginormous Pan 1: a whole lotta curry goin' on

Ginormous Pan 1: a whole lotta curry goin' on

Ginormous Pan 2: can anyone say meatballs?

Ginormous Pan 2: can anyone say meatballs?

Ginormous Pan 3: some good 'ol British bangers

Ginormous Pan 3: some good 'ol British bangers

Detail of the sausages on offer

Detail of the sausages on offer

There were also some beautiful vegetables on display

There were also some beautiful vegetables on display

And fruit too...

And fruits too...

...with some British strawberries basking in the sun

...with some British strawberries basking in the sun

There was also some very colorful & tasty looking vegetarian organic food from some folks at a place called Rainforest Creations (http://www.rainforestcreations.co.uk)

There was also some very colorful & tasty looking vegetarian organic food from some folks at a place called Rainforest Creations (http://www.rainforestcreations.co.uk)

And for dessert, there were some very attractivley presented Middle Eastern delights

And for dessert, there were some very attractively presented Middle Eastern delights

But a much more interesting option for dessert was presented by Konditor & Cook's stand (http://www.konditorandcook.com). Here, children - or adults - could decorate their own cupcakes and stick them into gooey chocolate icing skin of a long, slitherly beast. Quite inventive and brilliant for the children

But a much more interesting option for dessert was presented by Konditor & Cook's stand (http://www.konditorandcook.com). Here, children - or adults - could decorate their own cupcakes and stick them into gooey chocolate icing skin of a long, slithery beast. Quite inventive and brilliant for the children

There were some other, even more slightly cooky stalls as well. One, which was giving people edible potted gardens to wear on their heads, accompanied by little signs saying 'eat me', was particularly amusing - especially the people who were running the stand...just look at their outfits

There were some other, even more slightly cooky stalls as well. One, which was giving people edible potted gardens to wear on their heads, accompanied by little signs saying 'eat me', was particularly amusing - especially the people who were running the stand...just look at their outfits

Another enthusiastic bestower of edible garden hats

Another enthusiastic bestower of edible garden hats

And another...

And another...

She was particularly energetic

She was particularly energetic

An heretofore innocent bystander gives in and walks down the bridge with some food on his head

A heretofore innocent bystander gives in and walks down the bridge with some food on his head

A professional artist apparently created this swinging plant boat for the festival...it was certainly colorful & interesting

A professional artist apparently created this swinging plant boat for the festival...it was certainly colorful & interesting

There was a wine tasting stand, and I tried a Chapel Down English white wine, whcih was a bit too tart and crisp for me - but is was well chilled & hot outside, so not the end of the world

There was a wine tasting stand, and I tried a Chapel Down English white wine, which was a bit too tart and crisp for me - but is was well chilled & hot outside, so not the end of the world

I just had to take a picture of this dog - I mean, c'mon, look at him

I just had to take a picture of this dog - I mean, c'mon, look at him

After the festival, we headed to Borough Market...this was along one of the narrow alleys on the way there

After the festival, we headed to Borough Market...this was along one of the narrow alleys on the way there

We bought some very good comte from a cheese stall in the market, which had been very recently driven back from Switzerland - yum!

We bought some very good comte from a cheese stall in the market, which had been very recently driven back from Switzerland - yum!

The angry looking bull atop the Black & Blue steakhouse at Borough Market was telling us that it was time to head home, and that it was time to end this post! Hope you enjoyed the snaps :)

The angry looking bull atop the Black & Blue steakhouse at Borough Market was telling us that it was time to head home, and that it was time to end this post! Hope you enjoyed the snaps🙂

5 thoughts on “Thames Festival – Feast on the Bridge

  1. Your photos really convey the lovely atmosphere of the feast on the bridge! I designed and handprinted the tablecloths, covered in food stories collected from Londoners. Youre welcome to add a credit under the pictures of the cloth! I also painted the hoardings… the feast is curated and organised by Clare Patey, she is an environmental artist……I’m so glad you had such fun, come and tell me a food story on my stall next year!

    • Thanks for your comment Sophie. It was really a cool event, and the design elements were fun, quirky and classy. Well done on the tablecloths – I have now added a credit for you under one of the photos along with your website. Hopefully see you next year, if not before!🙂

      Best regards,

      LF

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