This year’s Taste of Birmingham defied the economic downturn and unpredictable weather to attract a record number of food fans to Cannon Hill Park.

Around 14,000 people flocked to the food festival – 16 per cent more visitors than last year.

The festival’s organisers Marketing Birmingham said they had seen a fantastic turn-out on all four days of the event with Friday, July 10, and Saturday, July 11, nearing capacity.Foodies were able to enjoy meals from 17 local restaurants including Edmunds, Lasan and Fusion brasserie and samples from over 50 exhibitors.

There was also entertainment and live music on the BRMB stage from the Jam House, Britain’s Got Talent football freestyler Jeremy Lynch and bands including classical pop quartet Escala and rock band Ben’s Brother.

Marketing Birmingham commercial director Ian Taylor said: “We’re delighted so many people visited Taste of Birmingham this year.

“It’s the first time that Marketing Birmingham has managed the festival and the team has worked hard with our partners to create an event that people will enjoy.

“The success of Taste of Birmingham highlights what the city does best – holding great events. It is testament to the team approach of everyone involved – from the chefs, the exhibitors, to the staff behind the scenes.”

Roger Allonby, head of tourism and culture at Advantage West Midlands, one of the sponsors of the event, added: “Taste of Birmingham this year was a real reflection of the quality of the Heart of England region – the best of the West Midlands offering was packed into four days, from restaurants, local producers, even the music.”