Held at Manvers Street Baptist Church in the city centre, a moment's walk from the train and bus stations, the event lasted from 12 til 4pm. Otherwise, the second annual free food event followed much the same pattern as the previous year - with a dazzling array of steaming soups, chillies, rice dishes and lovingly-tended vegetable delicacies filling the bowls of queues of hungry fayre-goers, alongside a mouth-watering spread of cakes, cookies, snacks and ethnic desserts. The tea and fruit juices flowed like never before, whilst the tables were filled with relaxed conversation and ingested education. As well as the over-burdened information tables (with everything from nutrition, environmental ethics, recipes, animal rights, medical science and updates for campaigns against zoos, hunters, foie gras outlets and animal-testing laboratories), free samples table, reading corner and children's area, there was also a prize raffle – the cause of some excitement. By the end of the day, many a happy visitor was heard singing the praises of the food, including the immortal words: “I had no idea vegan food could taste this good!”
Pickings were slim though, at the end of the day, for the ever-energetic and patient volunteers, all expecting to take home leftover goodies: almost nothing remained. Better luck next year, vegan vultures!
Big thanks go out to Bute Island Foods, The Booja-Booja Company, Suma Wholefoods, Beanies Health Foods, The Vegan Society, Animal Aid, Viva!, Essential Trading Co-operative, Lush, Vegetarian Shoes, Plamil Foods, The Green Stationery Company, Mail Boxes Etc., staff at the Hobgoblin, DJ Ted, The Black Rat, Madame Hatter and indeed Bristol Animal Rights Collective.