THE superstar line-up for this year’s Bolton Food and Drink Festival has been revealed.

MasterChef judge, chef and television presenter, John Torode, will be joining firm food festival favourites Michael Caines, Gino D’Acampo and James Martin at the four-day foodie extravaganza.

And this year there will be new activities aimed specifically at children.

Celebrity Aussie chef and restaurateur John will be appearing in a dedicated marquee on Victoria Square, on Sunday, August 24.

The festival will feature a large speciality food and drink market.

Free street entertainment will take place in the town centre over the August Bank Holiday weekend, from Friday, August 22, to Monday, August 25.

And in a twist to the usual format, as well as doing a cooking demo, John will be judging a cook-off between top regional chefs.

John has become a household name thanks to MasterChef and John Torode’s Australia.

He moved to the UK in the 1990s and worked as a sous-chef for the Conran Group.

John said: “It’s fantastic to be part of Bolton Food and Drink Festival. This will be my first time at the event and I can’t wait.

“I’m passionate about good, beautifully cooked British food so I’m really looking forward to being involved.”

Britain’s favourite Italian chef Gino D’Acampo will be making a welcome return on Saturday, August 23, having appeared at the festival twice before.

He said: “I’m so excited I’m coming back to the Bolton Food and Drink Festival.

“I love Bolton, and everyone was so lovely when I came down before. I can’t wait to meet everyone again and cook up some more fantastico Italian food.”

The festival, now in its ninth year, will once again be launched by two-Michelin starred chef Michael Caines on the Friday, and fellow festival favourite James Martin will take centre stage on Bank Holiday Monday, August 25.

Bolton Council leader, Cllr Cliff Morris, said: “Bolton Food and Drink Festival is without doubt one of the best food festivals in the UK, and it just gets better and better every year.

“Last year’s festival was our biggest yet with 130,000 visitors and we’re hoping for even more this year.

“The event is a real celebration of the best of local and regional produce, with traders coming from far and wide. It’s fantastic to have John on board this year and we’re sure he will be a real success. Together with Gino and our festival regulars James Martin and Michael Caines we’ve got a spectacular line-up of chefs.

“We are also organising some exciting new children’s activities so there really will be something for everyone. The festival really will be one not to be missed.”

More detailed information about the celebrity chef demos will be released soon and tickets will go on sale in June.

To keep up to date with the latest festival news, log on to the website, visit Facebook and search for Bolton Food and Drink Festival or search for #boltonfoodfest on Twitter.

Bolton Food and Drink Festival is organised by Bolton Council and sponsored by Bluemantle, Stateside Foods and Market Place Shopping Centre.

Partners so far this year include Bolton Market, Kro Bar, Marriott, and The Octagon Theatre.