Ooh la la - return of the French Market 21-23 May 2004

Winchester will once again witness the sights, sounds and smells of France this weekend as the city welcomes the return of the French Market.

Co-ordinated by Winchester City Council’s Tourism Service and the Winchester City Centre Partnership, the market will see over 20 genuine French traders selling their continental wares for three days from Friday 21 to Sunday 23 May. The market will be located on the Outer Cathedral Close for the first two days and move to Middle Brook Street on Sunday.

Bringing the best of France to the heart of Winchester, the market presents an ideal opportunity to stock up on all those Gallic essentials – from cheese, bread and garlic to charcuterie, olives and foie gras – without the need for a ferry crossing.

There will be the chance to spend some of those remaining holiday coins too, as the traders will accept Euros as an alternative to Sterling – just ask for the equivalent price. Don’t forget to request a handy phrase book to help you converse. These have been specially created by Bruno Girardeau, the market manager, and are available from every stall.

Three lucky readers will walk away with a hamper brimming with traditional French produce kindly donated by the market traders in the free daily prize draw. Entry coupons can be found in the Hampshire Chronicle on Friday 21 May.

Winchester Tourism’s Special Events Officer Elaine Robbins said the French markets are proving so popular with residents and visitors that they are now a regular feature in Winchester’s events calendar.

"Follow your nose to the bread stall, as it is freshly baked on site. The Cathedral Close is a very special setting for the market, and we are grateful to the Dean and his colleagues for their support in planning the event," she added.