BBC Haymarket has highlighted a better visitor experience at its 21st BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham despite an expected drop in attendance.
The BBC Good Food Show Winter was held from 23 to 27 November at The NEC and attracted 80,000 attendees (pending audit) along with 400 exhibitors.
According to ABC figures, last year’s winter edition reported a total attendance of 76,601 including 72,180 visitors. However, BBC Haymarket told EN this figure failed to take into account a faulty entry scanner, which affected the overall result. She confirmed this year’s actual ticket sales were 67,238, down from last year’s 75,343.
Despite the drop, BBC Haymarket MD Laura Biggs highlighted an improved visitor experiences and its best year in terms of support from exhibitors, sponsors and editorial content with 63 culinary stars across eight stages.
The organiser took an extra hall at The NEC to create more space and introduced additional seating areas. Divisional director Rachel Poletti-Gadd said the changes were a direct response to feedback forms.
Celebrities included Rick Stein, James Martin, John Torode, Gregg Wallace, Chris Evans, Jimmi Mistry and Cherie Lunghi. Other features included a MasterChef Experience, a larger British food showcase and guest appearances by the stars and winners of the Great British Bake Off TV programme.
“We are overwhelmed at the positive response we have had from visitors and exhibitors this year,” Poletti-Gadd continued. “Times have been difficult and it’s testament to our team that we produced one of our best ever shows.”
BBC Haymarket will run its first Good Food Show at the new Glow events venue at Bluewater from 12 to 15 April 2012.
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