RAMSBOTTOM was “choc-a-block” with visitors for the town’s annual chocolate festival.

Chocoholics came from near and far to sample the delights the event, now in its sixth year, had to offer.

It is estimated that the festival attracted in the region of 40,000 people over the two days.

And say organisers it was the biggest and best yet — with 10,000 more visitors than last year — despite Bury Council pulling out.

New attractions included a new family fun area and stalls.

Children could make their own Easter lollipop at the mini-chocolate factory, while chocolate in all its form was being sold on the many stalls - and there was a chocolate fountain, locally made ice cream, pancakes and much more.

Local business put chocolate specials on their menus across the week.

Cllr Ian Bevan, who helped with the event, said: “The event has previously been organised by Bury Council but this year it pulled out leaving Ramsbottom Business Group three months to organise it.

“The festival was bigger and better and we had people nationwide coming to the festival, saying they had heard about it. The Ramsbottom Business Group were able to expand the festival.

“We had many independent chocolatiers and much more going on as well.”

As well as the festival other attractions included a demonstration from Lancashire Hawks and Owls and a display from the food network, Made in Lancashire.

An artisan farmers’ market was also held in Market Place and a duck race organised by Ramsbottom Rotary took place in the Bridge Street gardens.

To accommodate the festival the town centre was shut to traffic and for the first time a park and ride operated to bus visitors in to the festival.

Cllr Bevan said: “It was wonderful to see so many people in Ramsbottom and we hope they come back.

“The Ramsbottom Business Group worked very hard and over the two days we think, around 40,000 people visited.”