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The founder of the country’s longest running English wine festival, and former owner of the English Wine Centre, is set to pay a flying visit to East Sussex to avoid missing the event which nearing its milestone 40th anniversary.
Christopher ‘Topper’ Ann, who pioneered the revival of the country’s wine industry, is due to arrive at next weekend’s Glynde Food & English Wine Festival in a helicopter flown by film and TV pilot Marc Wolff. Marc has flown helicopters in over 140 blockbuster movies, including nearly all the James Bond and Harry Potter films. Marc was recently involved in one of the most memorable moments of the London 2012 Olympics when he dropped the stuntman dressed as the Queen into the arena at the opening ceremony.
Christopher, who retired to Cornwall after selling the Wine Centre at Alfriston in 2007, was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year and has spent the past month in hospital in Plymouth. A familiar face at the festival over the decades, he was determined not to miss this year’s event, which takes place this Saturday and Sunday, 13th and 14th July.
Marc stepped in to offer to fly Christopher down to East Sussex in a mere 90 minutes to avoid the lengthy car journey from Cornwall.
“I was determined not to let things get in the way of visiting the English Wine Festival as it fast approaches its 40th anniversary and I am extremely grateful for Marc’s offer to fly us down,” said Christopher. “Whilst I don’t plan to make an entrance by parachuting in, I am really looking forward to spending a few hours seeing old friends and supporting this very important event in the English wine calendar, weather and health permitting.”
Set in the beautiful grounds of Glynde Place, near Lewes, the 7th Glynde Food & English Wine Festival will showcase a selection of the best regional food and drink producers alongside a programme of cookery demonstrations and free entertainment. After moving to various venues, the English Wine Festival became part of the Glynde event six years ago.
Tickets for the festival, which cost £10 for adults, £8 for students and OAPs, £5 for 13-18s and under-12s free, can be bought online and at the gate. For more information visit the festival website which also includes a link to the colourful history of the English Wine Festival and Christopher’s long association with the country’s wine industry. www.glyndefoodfestival.co.uk
Press release from the offices of www.englishwineproducers.com