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Celebrity chef at Yarmouth festival

PUBLISHED: 10:08 07 December 2009 | UPDATED: 15:52 03 July 2010

Celebrity chef Franck Pontais will lead celebrations at Great Yarmouth's first Mardi Gras on February 16.

The Paris-born chef, now living in Halesworth, worked for Harrods and Selfridges before setting up his own catering business, Food Creations.

Celebrity chef Franck Pontais will lead celebrations at Great Yarmouth's first Mardi Gras on February 16.

The Paris-born chef, now living in Halesworth, worked for Harrods and Selfridges before setting up his own catering business, Food Creations.

His TV career began on Ready Steady Cook last year when he went head-to-head with Gino D'Acampo.

Pontais will be demonstrating how to cook pancakes, or crepes, and will be bringing a Gallic flavour to the fiesta's proceedings.

The event's organisers, SeaChange, already have strong ties with France, working in partnership with French street festivals as part of the Out There festival.

Mardi Gras, “Fat Tuesday”, is known worldwide as a carnival celebration and in England simply as Shrove Tuesday. The King Street Mardi Gras will be celebrating food, traditions and culture associated with this global celebration, partic-ularly from the town's Lithuanian and Portuguese communities.

SeaChange chief executive, Joe Mackintosh, said: “It's a great opportunity to celebrate the growing multicultural nature of Yarmouth. Mardi Gras is rich in pageantry, colour and customs and is celebrated across the globe. We'll be looking to bring a little of that magic to Yarmouth.

“In Portugal, they have a range of Mardi Gras traditions from food fights to Brazilian-style carnivals, while in Lithuania, customs include a fight between a fat man and a thin man, with the thin man winning, representing the arrival of spring. We'll be looking to replicate these traditions through some of our programming.”

Also in February, the Czech National Symphony Orchestra will visit.

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