North East Vegan Festival (Nevfest) returns to Sunderland's Stadium of Light

North East Vegan Festival
North East Vegan Festival

Intriguing faux cheeses, a plant-based patisserie and a puppet show highlighting the plight of animals are among the offerings as the North East Vegan Festival (Nevfest) returns to Sunderland.

Thousands of vegans, vegetarians and curious meat-eaters are set to descend on the Stadium of Light at the weekend for the popular festival, which has proved a runaway success and sparked dozens of similar events around the country since it began in November 2012.

Nevfest was founded to raise money for the Farplace animal sanctuary in County Durham, as well as bring vegans together and give non-vegans the chance to learn more about living a life free from animal products.

Events manager Kerri Turner said: "It's great to be heading back to Sunderland. Farplace now runs festivals around the country, but this is where it all began and there's always an amazing turnout and buzz.

"It's a charity event, but it's also a great way of bringing vegan businesses and vegan customers together so people can stock up on goodies, try new products and be inspired.

"But, as I always say, these are events for everyone - and it's always brilliant to see non-vegans coming along, trying vegan food, and perhaps being inspired to reduce or cut-out meat and dairy from their diets."

The festival, which takes place on Sunday November 12 as part of World Vegan Month celebrations, will feature some 70 stalls selling hot and cold food, drinks, clothing, accessories, cosmetics, toiletries, household goods and other products.

A programme of film screenings and talks will run throughout the day giving an insight into the vegan lifestyle, nutrition, and ethical issues.

These include a puppet show called the Lucky Little Fox and the Reluctant Hound, a presentation on the plight of the urban squirrel, and a talk on "how to make a man vegan in 45 minutes" by academic, writer and vegan marathon runner Dr Alex Lockwood.

Charities and organisations will also be holding stalls to promote their causes and recruit new members.

Ocean conservation charity Sea Shepherd and athletics club Vegan Runners are among the organisations who will be talking to festival-goers about their activities.

The North East Vegan Festival runs from 10.30am to 5pm on Sunday November 16 at the Stadium of Light.

Entry costs £3 on the door, with advance and VIP tickets for sale online. Under-16s get in free, and there is a kids zone for children.