Showcase: Feast of Albion - Celebrating a green and pleasant land

The Feast of Albion at London's Guildhall allowed the Soil Association to demonstrate all that is good about British organic produce.

What was the event? A banquet created to raise money for the Soil Association's Farm School Initiative. Guests including Mick Jagger, Annie Lennox, Colin Firth, Jemima Khan and Richard E Grant were among the 400 diners who attended the event, which was titled The Feast of Albion, at the Guildhall.

How was the event structured? Designed to celebrate the best of British, the event took on a sustainable and organic theme. This was evident as soon as guests arrived and walked down the artificial grass that was used instead of a more traditional red carpet. Once inside, invitees were ushered into a reception area where the focal point was a bar designed by sponsor Perrier Jouet. For those not drinking alcohol, waiting staff provided organic apple juice and water in recycled jam jars, while a range of canapes, which included raw root and artichoke fritters and Highgrove mutton and turnip pies, were served on recycled food crates and wooden trays made from a narrow section of tree trunk.

After the reception, guests moved into the main room for dinner, where the tables were decorated in an earthy yet opulent style. Guests' nametags had been inserted into buds that were potted in a recycled jar, and which each guest was encouraged to take home and plant.

Four mini stages were created for the acts to ensure everyone could see each entertainer. In between the five-course dinner, which included bay-pickled Thames herrings, nettle soup and Windsor Park venison, the acts took to the stage, w hile afterwards an auction that boasted lots such as a five-star experience in the Himalayas and Bhutan, or a trip on the world's fastest monohull racing yacht, took place. This was supplemented by a silent auction. In total, more than £400,000 was raised. Host for the evening was Jonathan Dimbleby.

Who was behind the event? It was created and produced by agency Quintessentially Events, which utilised the skills of lighting expert Renegade and the culinary talents of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Mark Hix and The Admirable Crichton. Entertainment was provided by Annie Lennox, Ronnie Scott's All Stars, David Jordan and Natasha Marsh, while the lead sponsors were Perrier Jouet and Bedat & Co.

What were the highlights? Everyone was transfixed by Annie Lennox' s superb performance. Another highlight was, of course, the food, in particular the nettle soup that was sourced from Hyde Park, and the fact that all the ingredients came from within 50 miles of Tower Bridge.

SUPPLIER FILE

Quintessentially Events
www.quintessentiallyevents.com
(020) 7758 3377

Renegade
www.renegadedesign.co.uk
07795 095427

The Guildhall
www.gsmd.ac.uk
(020) 7382 7192


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