Thinking of drinking some brews down South?
Our pick of the Beer Festivals in England and Wales this Summer…
A while back we looked at all the great beer festivals that are taking place this year in Scotland, by now we’re sure you’ve made a few plans but it’s important not to forget about the host of exciting beer-based events that are taking place just south of the border in England and Wales. Whilst we know that many Scottish folk might turn their noses up at heading down south for a jaunt, especially when there are so many great beer festivals in our own Scotland, it would be silly to ignore the sheer variety of events that take place in England over the heady summer months.
There was a time when beer festivals were nothing more than a collection of kegs and a handful of old men getting slowly sozzled in the back room of a pub, but things have changed since then. Where once just a scattering of timber packing cases and barrels would have sufficed, a lot more is expected of organisers today. Beer festivals are now massive events that draw in more than just ale-lovers; they’re mainstream events that attract as many young hipsters and students as they do pub-goers and traditional drinkers.
With that in mind, we’ve carefully selected four events in England that best exemplify the traits of a modern beer festival:
Liverpool Craft Beer Expo
Six years in and this independently managed festival is returning bigger than ever and in a new location. Moving into the hip, cavernous surroundings of Liverpool’s Invisible Wind Factory, over 5000 people are expected to attend over the course of four days, with over 300 craft beers due to be in attendance. This is truly a modern festival and although the name might suggest a stiff upper lip convention that’s only for those in the industry, the reality is a 5-hour session filled with great beer, awesome food and a winning lineup of music acts.
When? 26th-29th July 2018 How much? £10.50-12.50 per session
Bristol Craft Beer Festival
Creativity, quality and independence are at the heart of the what this small, young beer festival tries to champion. Over 35 breweries will be bringing their beers to their new location at Bristol’s Harbourside and with the Summer sun sure to be blasting down, this will be an event well worth going to. Music in the past has been provided by big acts such as Bombay Bicycle Club, Metronomy and DJ Yoda so, although the lineup has yet to be announced, you can be sure there’ll be someone good on.
When? 14th-16th September 2018 How much? £35 per session
Great British Beer Festival
Probably one of the most prestigious festivals on this list, the Great British Beer Festival is the largest of its kind in the UK and a veritable mecca for beer lovers the world over. Held at the massive Olympia in London, there’ll be a staggering 900+ ales at this year’s event exhibiting the very best of beer from all over the world. Run by CAMRA, this is an event that has carefully sidelined the hip leanings of its competition and has remained true to its roots with plenty of pub games and entertainment to keep you busy.
When? 7th-11th August 2018 How much? £11 per session
Manchester Beer Week
What’s better than a day spent drinking beer? How about an entire week! Whilst we can’t recommend that you actually spend an entire week drinking beer, because of the obvious health implications, its worth visiting the buzzing city of Manchester at the start of July to soak up the good weather and discover more about beer. This city-wide festival is comprised of over a 100 separate events giving you the opportunity not just to drink beer but also learn about its provenance and future.
When? 29th June-8th July 2018 How much? Price varies depending on event.