Reprieve for Hitchin Beer Festival

Peter Tasko (Hitchin RFC chairman), Simon Goodlad (Hitchin RFC), Jonathan Kirby (CAMRA 2013 beer fes

Peter Tasko (Hitchin RFC chairman), Simon Goodlad (Hitchin RFC), Jonathan Kirby (CAMRA 2013 beer festival organiser ), Chris Burn (Hitchin Round Table chairman) and Brian Mason (CAMRA North Herts chairman), at the rugby club where the new festival will be held - Credit: Archant

A FESTIVAL which organisers feared would have to be scrapped when it lost its venue has been saved.

The festival when it was held in Hitchin Town Hall

The festival when it was held in Hitchin Town Hall - Credit: Archant

CAMRA North Herts members thought they would have to stop running Hitchin Beer Festival because the town hall, where it was based, has closed for redevelopment.

But, along with Hitchin Round Table, it has now joined forces with Hitchin Rugby Club to run the event in June, after one of the club’s members spotted an article in the Comet.

It is hoped much of the later new-look festival, which will be spread across a marquee and rugby club facilities in Old Hale Way, will be held outside.

CAMRA North Herts chairman, Brian Mason, said: “It will be a little later in the year [than usual], so people will be able to sit outside.

“It will boast a selection around 80 Real Ales from near and far and we will ensure that quite a few of the ales fall into LocAle category; that is they are from within 30 miles of the venue, therefore reducing our carbon footprint.

“Along with the real ales, there will be many examples of cider, perry and foreign beers, to ensure that this festival is as successful as all the previous ones.”

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The idea for the festival was hatched after Simon Goodlad, from the rugby club, spotted an article in the Comet while stopping off for a Chinese takeaway.

Knowing the club was keen to run a beer festival, he spoke to bar chairman John Humphries, who then contacted Mr Mason, as the article suggested.

The festival will be held on Thursday, June 6 - Saturday, June 8, between 5pm and 11pm on the first day, and midday and 11pm on the other two days.

CAMRA members who wish to volunteer can contact chairman@camranorthherts.org.uk

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