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Kent-grown fruits for golf fans at The Open Championship
June 20, 2011

The succulent strawberries lapped up by tennis fans at Wimbledon each year will also be enjoyed by golf enthusiasts at this summer’s Open Championship – and they are grown in Kent.

Hugh Lowe Farms, situated in Mereworth, has been selected as one of the official food and beverage suppliers to the Open, to be hosted by Royal St George’s Golf Club in Sandwich, on Kent’s picturesque south-east coastline, from July 14-17.

The award-winning soft-fruit farm, one of the UK’s most renowned, will be showcasing the Garden of England’s much vaunted fruit heritage – with raspberries in addition to strawberries – for the corporate hospitality menu to visitors from all over the world during the tournament.

Marion Regan, owner of Hugh Lowe Farms, shows off some of the succulent Kent-grown strawberries that will be enjoyed by corporate hospitality guests at the Open Golf Championship in Sandwich
Marion Regan, owner of Hugh Lowe Farms, shows off some of the succulent Kent-grown strawberries that will be enjoyed by corporate hospitality guests at the Open Golf Championship in Sandwich

The berries will provide golf fans with a true taste of authentic Kentish produce – both during and after the event when they visit the Garden of England for a relaxing golfing break, available via www.visitkent.co.uk/golf (Visit Kent), the county’s official tourism website, that offers a choice of more than 100 outstanding courses.

Being appointed to supply both the Open and Wimbledon championships by the official caterers of these two high-profile tournaments – among the crown jewels of Britain’s annual sporting calendar – is a real feather in the cap for Kent and its fruit produce growers.

Marion Regan, owner of Hugh Lowe Farms, said: “Having the Open here in Kent is an honour in itself, and supplying the event with our locally grown strawberries and raspberries means we can ensure all visitors enjoy a genuine ‘taste of Kent’.

“I think the freshness and flavour of our berries are the key reasons why we have been selected as official suppliers to both events, as they are eaten within just a day or two of picking. Our south-facing sunny slopes here in the Garden of England help us grow the finest tasting berries.”

Hugh Lowe Farms – started by Marion’s great-grandfather 118 years ago – employs 41 full-time and some 450 seasonal harvesting staff to help keep not only top sporting events such as the Open and Wimbledon supplied with produce but also leading supermarkets, such as Waitrose, restaurants, hotels and farm shops.

The Garden of England has long been acclaimed for the exceptional quality of its wide variety of soft fruits which, aside from strawberries and raspberries, also include blackberries, loganberries, tayberries, blueberries, gooseberries, blackcurrants and redcurrants along with apples, pears and stone fruit, such as cherries and plums.

Kent, with its warm, temperate climate offering ideal growing conditions, also boasts superior vineyards generating award-winning wine (some of which was enjoyed at the recent Royal Wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton), fabulous apple and pear juices, and a long-established hop-growing heritage that is now springing back to life in glorious fashion.

Added to this are the succulent delights of tender Romney lamb and the county’s award-winning cheese-making industry.

Kent’s delicious produce is promoted by Produced in Kent, which works closely in partnership with Visit Kent, and its leading producers are recognised for their quality at the organisation’s annual awards.

“We are proud of our heritage and our reputation for producing all manner of produce certainly proves that visitors to Kent do not need to cross the English Channel for items such as excellent cheese and wine these days!” said Julie Monkman, Manager of Produced in Kent.

Royal St George's Golf Club, venue of the 2011 Open Championship
Royal St George's Golf Club, venue of the 2011 Open Championship
The Clubhouse and 1st tee

Among the magnificent collection of golf courses Kent has to offer are the celebrated ‘Regal Golf Coast’ links golf courses of Royal St George’s, Prince’s (home of the 1932 Open), Royal Cinque Ports (venue of the 1909 and 1920 Opens), Littlestone (an England Top 100 Course) and North Foreland – all located along Kent’s picturesque south-east coastline – along with fantastic downland, parkland, castle and championship courses, such as London Golf Club (a European Tour Destination) and Chart Hills (a UK Top 100 Course, designed by Sir Nick Faldo).

Sandra Matthews-Marsh, Chief Executive of Visit Kent, said: “We are proud that Kent has so much to offer – not only as one of the UK’s premier golfing destinations for long and short breaks but as a producer of delicious, award-winning produce and wines that will give visitors a true taste of Kent while they stay with us.”

For more information on events in Kent, visit www.visitkent.co.uk/golf.
For details on Produced in Kent visit www.producedinkent.co.uk.

 








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