Slow Food UK, the UK arm of the international Slow Food movement, has announced that its new national headquarters will be based in Ludlow, Shropshire. The office, which is due to open in November, will be run by Fiona Richmond, the Slow Food UK Co-ordinator, who is currently based at Slow Food’s international headquarters in Bra, Italy.
Ludlow was one of four areas which submitted bids to host the office. The other three were Edinburgh, Cumbria and Highlands & Islands, of which Edinburgh was the other shortlisted candidate.
“A huge amount of effort went into the bids and we were presented with a very difficult choice,” said Sue Miller, Chair of Slow Food UK’s board of directors. “Ultimately Ludlow’s offer was considered by the Board to be the strongest. As well as its fine reputation for quality food and drink and its strong environmental credentials, we felt that there was a tremendous commitment from the town and local agencies to ensure the success of the office. In short, we felt that Ludlow was the spiritual home of Slow Food and would provide the ideal base from which to work for a high quality, responsible food culture in the UK. ”
“We’re immensely pleased and proud, and look forward to welcoming Slow Food UK to our fine town,” said Graeme Kidd, Mayor of Ludlow who co-ordinated the town’s bid. “Ludlow is already the UK headquarters of Cittàslow, the ‘slow town’ organisation, and now we can really claim to be the UK’s “Capital of Slow”. I’m sure we will be working in very positive ways with Slow Food over the coming years, to mutual benefit.”
The national office will give the movement a stronger presence and focus in the UK, enabling the development of its projects, including protecting biodiversity through the Ark of Taste and Presidia; promoting taste-education; building a network of producers, cooks, the public and educators through Terra Madre; and offering greater supporter to the local convivia (groups of members) and their activities.