South Devon Crab Festival Launches

Mitch Tonks South Devon Crab Festival

South Devon goes “crab crazy” with the launch of the first South Devon crab festival!

South Devon is all set to go “crab crazy” with a feast of fun family events with the launch of the first ever South Devon crab festival at the Church House Inn at Harberton on Sunday July 31 (1-30pm onwards). Check out: to see some video action showing a taster of what’s to come.

The Festival Advocate celebrity seafood chef Mitch Tonks will open the festival (August 1-7) which will herald a week- long programme of crab related events at locations all across South Devon. Tourism businesses, crab fishermen and chefs have all come together in a festival to celebrate one of the UK’s finest and delicious seafood.

Families at the festival launch will be able to limber up for the “sideways” races, dress up for the fancy dress parade, try their hand at picking crab at the crab demos with local crab fisherman Rob Simmonds or simply relax and enjoy eating crab with some great live music!
South Devon crab fans will be able to enjoy an early taste of the festival fun by clicking onto: where Visit South Devon tourism partnership is launching a new two minute film featuring Mitch Tonks as well as the local sea shanty band, the Nauti Buoys and of course the joys of eating South Devon crab.

The South Devon crab festival follows on from the launch of the highly successful “Lets have a cracking time” sustainable food campaign last year which promoted the joys of eating of South Devon crab.

Highlights of the festival will include crab tastings, workshops, cook-ins, crab treasure hunt. There will also be a wide range of competitions and beach events as well as South Devon’s famous “Crab Celebrity” making an appearance at the four main events in the area. South Devon Crab will also take centre stage at the famous Shaldon Water Carnival (August 6) and the finale of the festival with the crab street party in Dartmouth. (August 7).

Shaldon Water Carnival (August 6)
For the past fifty years Shaldon water carnival has been celebrating its unique community spirit and maritime heritage with a magnificent parade of decorated boats at the harbour side in Shaldon.

Beach events begin at 10.30am with a sand sculpture competition as well as prizes for the ‘best dressed crab’ in the fancy dress competition. Celeb TV Gardener Toby Buckland will be joining in the fun, with crab cookery demos on the beach. The decorated boats parade begins at 4.30pm, followed by sumptuous Devon cream teas on the village green in Shaldon with live music and entertainment continuing long in to the evening.

South Devon Crab Street Party (12.30 August 7)
Mitch Tonks will be master of ceremonies for what promises to be the best crab street party ever on the South Embankment by the River Dart in Dartmouth. Expect a carnival atmosphere, celeb chefs, live music, bunting and trestle tables heaving with delicious South Devon crab to feed a crowd of around 400 people who are expected to attend the event (ticketed event, reservations in advance). Crabbing boats will be moored alongside the embankment and crews of local crab fishermen will be testing their crabbing skills in the not to be missed “McCrab competition.”

“Must Do “ South Devon crab events in festival week:
For the more adventurous ‘crab hunters”, canoeing and crabbing trips will be on offer all week, depending on the weather and the tide at Tuckenhay. Refreshments and crabbing at the quayside at the beautiful quintessential Devon village of Stoke Gabriel.

Step aboard the Dartmouth Steam Railway & River Boat Company with a camera for the crab train and river cruise and you could win a Hornby train set for the best crab photo.
Pop in to the station café on route for a delicious crab sandwich!

Landlubbers who step aboard Drake’s famous Golden Hind at Brixham will be tested by the fiendish crab treasure hunt which is being hosted there all week.

Children will enjoy the special crab quiz which will be running all festival week at Pennywell Farm.

A “foodies” guide to where to eat and enjoy crab in South Devon crab festival week:

Crab is definitely on the menu at the award winning Cary Arms at Babbacombe which is hosting a week of crabbing competitions culminating in a very special awards evening on Thursday 4 August at the luxury boutique hotel.

Mitch Tonk’s renowned Seahorse and Rock Fish Restaurants in Dartmouth will be serving up South Devon crab all week.

Friday 5 August the Millbrook Inn at South Pool will be hosting a crab party with a crab cracking master class from the Blue Sea Co in Brixham. Whole crab will be on the menu along with sea shanties and jugglers!

Down at one of the UK’s very best beaches at Blackpool Sands is the Venus Café which will be dedicating its evening menu to tasty crab dishes from spider crab and cracked brown crab to crab chilli tagliatelle

And the Sea Trout Inn at Staverton promises to be very creative with crab, serving up Asian inspired crab dishes, crab sushi and spring rolls, crab as you have never tasted before!

The Avon Mill Café in Kingsbridge will also be the place to be for crab amongst the beautiful flowers of the garden centre. Crab tastings will be on offer with crab on the menu there all week.

For further details of crab events, venues and timings please visit:

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