Peterhead Blue Toon Bree

The Town is the Menu


In 2022 Simon created The Town is the Menu menus for 11 towns across Scotland as part of the Dandelion Unexpected Gardens programme. The menus were served to local communities at large scale events to celebrate Harvest in 2022.

Simon also created a school’s resource for Dandelion called The School is the Menu that has been shared with over 400 high schools across Scotland.


The Town is the Menu has been a key and beloved annual event since 2016 where it exists as large scale community meal, served to 100 visitors on a single table – twice, each day of the festival. Working with local chefs and sources of surplus food, Simon has created and served menus inspired by Redcar, Saltburn, Guisborough, Skelton, Marske and Brotton at the Festival.



In 2014 Simon created and presented a 5-part series for BBC Radio 4 called  ‘The Town is the Menu’.

With BBC Senior Producer Pennie Latin, Simon visited 5 UK towns (Peterhead, Barnard Castle, Cambridge, Merthyr Tydfil & Cambridge) and invited a local chef to create a signature dish inspired by stories of their town.

Originally broadcast on Radio 4 in June 2014 The Town is the Menu was repeated in September 2015 and a second series was commissioned.

Read more about the idea behind the series and hear all the episodes.

To launch the radio series Simon wrote an article published in The Guardian newspaper.


The Town is the Menu originated as a 2012 Deveron Arts commission funded by Creative Scotland under their Creative Places Award Scheme. See earlier post for more details.