RESTAURANTS at the Top of The Town are gearing up for a new food festival.

Eat Street will take place in London Street on Saturday, April 12 from 11am to 3pm, and will include free food and cookery demonstrations.

There will also be live music, a children’s Easter trial, a cupcake decorating demonstration and a town crier.

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council have organised the event in a bid to boost the fortunes of the area.

Councillor Ranil Jayawardena, deputy leader of the borough council, said: “This will be a great event for local businesses and families looking for something to do on the first weekend of the Easter school holidays, making the Top of The Town a place to come to, not walk through.

“We’re taking the action needed to turn ‘old Basingstoke’ into a more interesting and vibrant destination for residents and visitors today and tomorrow.”

As reported in The Gazette, the borough council has worked with a team of specialists to revive the area, and they have drafted a masterplan about how it can be developed over the next 20 years.

Felicity Edwards, managing director of Destination Basingstoke, said: “This is the first time anything like this has happened and we hope it will encourage more co-operation between local businesses and a better understanding of what they each have to offer.”

The event is supported by businesses such as The Lime Leaf, Kitchen Kapers, The Tea Bar, Basingstoke Sugarcraft Centre, Delta Polish Food, Festival Plaice, Zizzi’s, The Mayflower and Roosters Piri Piri Chicken.