What better way to welcome spring properly than in the beautiful coastal town of Dungarvan at the West Waterford Festival of Food? The delightful festival for foodies returns for the seventh year from Thursday the 10th to Sunday the 13th of April, with a feast of events to tickle everyone's fancy.

As always, some of Ireland's most respected names in food - chefs, producers, writers and more - will be welcomed, and this year, the Festival will pay particular attention to pioneering women in Irish Food.

Tributes to the iconic and influential Myrtle Allen will be paid in a Town Hall demonstrations on Saturday, April 11th, while on the Sunday Darina Allen will introduce visitors to the new generation of women in Irish food, including Maria Raferty from Zuni, Gráinne O’Keefe from Pichet, Kate Lawlor from Fenn’s Quay, Caitlin Ruth from Deasy’s in Clonakilty, Aoife Noonan from Guilbauds and Jessica Murphy from Kai in Galway.

Of course, the programme is jam-packed will all sorts of other fascinating events, like Aniar Comes to the Tannery on Friday, April 11th when JP McMahon from Michelin-starred restaurant Aniar in Galway comes to The Tannery to cook with Paul Flynn, A Middle Eastern Feast with Eunice Power on the Saturday of the festival, Healthy Cooking That’s Not Boring with Sunday Independent food writer Susan Jane White and heaps more.

Other prestigious names participating in the weekend are the Sunday Times’ Ernie Whalley and the Sunday Business Post’s Managing Editor Gillian Nelis, and chefs Domini and Peaches Kemp, Rachel Firth, Eileen Dunne and Esther Barron and so many more bright sparks of the culinary world.

The West Waterford Festival of Food Farmer’s Market will be up and running, as will Restaurant Trails and the fun Busanna Bia. The Festival is totally family friendly - there'll be children’s and teens’ baking, pizza and cooking classes - so everyone can come along and enjoy all the charms of the festival.

See the West Waterford Festival of Food website for more details and don't forget to save your appetite!