‘Carrying on regardless’ – Rachel Allen makes first public appearance in aftermath of son’s drug arrest


Rachel Allen, at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers
Rachel Allen, at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers
Rachel Allen, at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers
Rachel Allen, at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers

It was a case of tea and sympathy when Rachel Allen turned out in Co Wexford for the annual Kennedy Summer School.

In a difficult week for the celebrity chef and mother of three,  she baked for 200 people at the popular Kennedy Afternoon tea party at the JFK Arboretum outside New Ross.

Earlier this week, Rachel and her husband Isaac issued a statement arising from the questioning of their 18-year-old son, Joshua, after a €30,000 cannabis seizure.

Earlier today, she was not answering questions from the media, and her husband, who is also her business manager, told reporters: “We have issued a statement. We have said what we said.”



Rachel Allen, at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien EagersRachel Allen, at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers

Rachel Allen, at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers

He said they did not  want to comment any further, but added they are “carrying on regardless”,

Before going on stage to talk to the audience, Rachel was seen chatting to Brendan Grace in the food preparation area and the big-hearted entertainer, who was a special guest at the event, put his arm around her.

While introducing Rachel  for the an hour-long  question and  answer session with MC Sean Connick, the former Fianna Fail TD who is chief executive  of the John F Kennedy Trust, he called a “big round of applause  in support of Rachel Allen”.

Then, while the €15 a head guests tucked into her baking delights, including vanilla buns, fruit cake, lemon cake, and scones, she chatted about her culinary career from the day she walked into Ballymaloe House to do a cookery course 28 years ago.



Rachel Allen, speaks to Wendy Radloff, from Ballyhague, wexford at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers / INMRachel Allen, speaks to Wendy Radloff, from Ballyhague, wexford at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers / INM

Rachel Allen, speaks to Wendy Radloff, from Ballyhague, wexford at the Kennedy afternoon tea party as part of the Kennedy Summer School at the JFK Memorial park and arboretum in Wexford. Photo: Damien Eagers / INM

It was there that she met her husband, son of another celebrity chef, Darina Allen, and grandson of Myrtle Allen, Michelin award winning chef who put Ballymaloe on the culinary map.

In their statement this week, the Allens said they were “devastated” that their son had been arrested on suspicion of possession of marijuana with intent to supply them to others.

They said he had admitted his guilt immediately, a   file had been sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions and, when formally charged, would be pleading guilty at the first opportunity.

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The statement added: “Our son is eighteen years old, has never been in trouble with the Gardaí, and has made a huge mistake, which will have profound consequences for him.”

“We do not in any way condone his actions, in fact, we utterly condemn them, but it is not for us to condemn him.”

“We must now try to look after our son and our family, the best way we can.”

“We would ask that the legal process would be allowed to proceed to deal with this matter, without interference, and that we would be allowed to deal with this, like any other parents, in a similar position.”

The summer school is a festival  of Irish and American history, culture and politics and the tea party is a nod to the afternoon tea served to former US president John F Kennedy at his ancestral home in nearby Dunganstown , on his visit to Ireland in 1963.

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