THOUSANDS of people are expected to flock to Eastleigh this weekend as the popular Chilli festival is set to return.

There will be chilli sauce, chilli ice cream and chilli cocktails at the festival set to take place at Leigh Road Recreation Ground on Saturday.

Chilli producers from across the country will come to the town centre for the fifth year running to give residents the chance to taste different types of chilli.

Brave residents will also have the chance to take part in the chilli eating contest that will be run at 3pm.

Organiser Alex Mustang said: “We want to support chilli producers, it is important to do that to keep them going and we want to give residents the chance to taste different types of chilli they won’t find in super-markets.”

Mr Mustang said the event in Eastleigh has always been a huge success.

“Attendance in Eastleigh is getting bigger and bigger.

“We have always had a great response in Eastleigh, they never failed us and I’m sure they will support us this year too,”he added.

The initiative is supported by Eastleigh BID, the organisation that promotes the town centre.

Eastleigh BID manager Teresa Swann said: “People who come to shop in the town centre will have the chance to live a completely different experience on Saturday. The chilli festival is something the community looks forward to each year.”

The event runs from 10.30am to 5pm. Entry is free.