It’s been 20 years since Hugh first appeared on our TV Screens

It’s been 20 years since Hugh first appeared on our TV Screens

Twenty years of River Cottage

River Cottage has been a household name in Britain since 1999, when Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall first brought his hands-on, ethical food ethos to our TV screens.  Since then, the River Cottage books, TV series and Hugh’s hard-hitting campaigns have changed the eating habits of the nation, as well as improving the welfare of our farm animals and the sustainability of our fish.

River Cottage HQ, situated on the Devon-Dorset border, is a thriving organic smallholding. It’s also home to a cookery school and chefs' school, and the base for unique dining experiences and events including weddings and private parties. The award-winning River Cottage Kitchens in Axminster, Bristol and Winchester manifest the River Cottage philosophy using the best seasonal ingredients from the surrounding area. Alongside organic fruit, vegetables and wild foods, the Kitchen menus use sustainable fish and shellfish from the West Country day boats and organic meat and dairy products from local farms.

In March 2019, River Cottage will celebrate its 20th anniversary and Hugh and the team want to hear stories from people who have been influenced by River Cottage. Over the years, so many people have been inspired by Hugh and the River Cottage ethos to make changes in their lives. That might be to eat organic meat and milk or to learn how to grow their own vegetables or keep chickens or even manage a small holding themselves. Or it maybe they were so inspired they decided to change career and start their own business in cheesemaking or curing or preserving or as a cook or restaurateur.

People sharing their story of how River Cottage has influenced them may be included as part of the twenty-year celebrations. If selected they will win a dinner for two at River Cottage HQ and be invited to join a panel discussion at the River Cottage Food Fair over the late May bank holiday, which will be hosted by Hugh.

Share your River Cottage story to


For further press information, interviews or images, please contact:

Hannah Blake at The Dining Room on 07730 039361 or

Notes to Editors

The River Cottage twenty-year celebrations will run throughout 2019

The first episode of Escape to River Cottage was shown in March 1999. Positioned as a docu-drama, it followed the story of Hugh, a city-dweller, trying to simplify his life by moving to a smallholding with an acre of land. It showed how Hugh learnt to garden, grow and forage for his own food and raise animals to provide meat and milk for the table

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall will be available for interview about the celebrations and his own twenty years at River Cottage

River Cottage HQ, Trinity Hill Road, Axminster, Devon, EX13 8TB

Twitter: @rivercottage Instagram: @rivercottagehq