It's almost time to worship the pepper again as the Benington Chilli Festival returns over the August Bank Holiday weekend.

Started in 2006, the Benington Chilli Festival is a hugely popular family event attracting thousands of visitors over three days.

The foodie extravaganza, as the name suggests, is a festival devoted to chillies and all things associated with the red-hot pepper – from chutneys, sauces and pickles to seeds, cheese and chocolate.

The 15th Benington Chilli Festival takes place at Benington Lordship, near Stevenage, on Saturday, August 27, Sunday, August 28, and August Bank Holiday Monday, August 29.

Open from 10am to 5pm each day, there will be chilli plants for sale, hot food from around the world, craft beer, and, according to the festival's Facebook page "more pickles, sauces and delicious things in jars than you can shake a stick at".

Welwyn Hatfield Times: Benington Chilli Festival. Picture: Sharon Struckman.Benington Chilli Festival. Picture: Sharon Struckman. (Image: Archant)

Stalls will be set up throughout the garden and there's a wide range of refreshments on offer to help you cool down.

The entertainment will also include the famous chilli eating competition for the hardcore enthusiast.

Are you brave enough to enter?

The contest is held at 4pm each day and is limited to 12 participants, on a first come, first served basis.

Adult tickets cost £8.50, and under-12s go free.

For more details and where to park, visit