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Hove - it's all happening!

The 28th Festival will be held on Thurs 22nd - Sat 24th March 2018 at Brighton Racecourse.


[Official Press Release Number 2]

The 8th, 9th and 10th March sees the return, for the 17th year, of the Sussex CAMRA Branches Beer & Cider Festival, once again at The Hove Centre, Norton Road, Hove. With a new organiser, Mike Lockyer (who will be familiar to most regulars at the festival as the bearded, balding Chief Steward - bets are being taken on how much balder he's going to be by the end of the festival), and nearly 300 beers (as many as we can fit in!) plus a good selection of ciders and perries, this hugely popular festival opens to the public at 5.00 p.m. on the Thursday. Tickets for the Friday evening are already selling out at the time of writing, and sales for other sessions are also going well. Who knows? We may even exceed last year's record number of visitors . . .

If you haven't visited this festival previously, the majority of beers are served from the Main Bar on the first floor, where there is live music on the Friday and Saturday evenings - Forever Young on Friday and Zen House on Saturday. The balcony area food bar will be run by The Splendid Meat Company, serving a range of light bites and more substantial fare; all their meat is from traditional breeds, raised in the traditional way, and they also provide vegetarian options. For those who prefer to sup their ale in peace, the Quiet Bar on the ground floor is a music-free zone, and hosts the Sussex Bar, featuring local ales.

One beer to watch out for - this year is the 10th anniversary of the festival's charity, The Martlets Hospice, and a special brew, Quality of Life, produced by Custom Beers, will be on sale to mark the occasion, with all proceeds going to The Martlets.

We will also be open until 11.00 p.m. on the Saturday evening; although the general idea is that there shouldn't be much if any beer left by then, our most excellent Beer Organiser does have a contingency plan if we start running out earlier than anticipated, and it does mean that visitors will not have to sup up and depart when there are still a few beers to be sampled.

As ever, no Beer Festival can happen without people to serve the beer, and the secret to any beer festival's success is a committed team of volunteers working to ensure that all festival-goers enjoy themselves. That's not to say that it's just hard work, by any means . . . Our Staffing Officer for 2007, Alison Clark (contact her on 01903 535541 or at ali-beerfeststaff@hotmail.com), is writing to everyone on the Sussex CAMRA mailing list asking for volunteers to staff the bars. If you are a CAMRA member in Sussex and haven't had your letter, you can download the letter and staffing form from our Help Out page.

Two other points of interest: firstly, this year's festival will be the subject of a film documentary - if you ever wanted to know what goes on behind the scenes at a beer festival, Gareth and his crew will be finding out; secondly, our resident artist would welcome suggestions for the design of next year's logo - whoever comes up with the best suggestion will win a pair of tickets to the 2008 festival - full details of this competition will appear on the website and in the programme.

Times and ticket prices are as follows:

Thursday evening 5 pm - 11 pm £3.50
Friday lunch time 11 am - 3 pm £3
Friday evening 5 pm - 11 pm £6
Saturday lunch time 11 am - 3 pm £3
Saturday evening 5 pm - 10 pm £5 (£3 concessions)

Tickets are available at the usual outlets (Brighton & Hove: the Hove & Brighton Centres, The Evening Star, The Sir Charles Napier, The Bell (Belfast Street, Hove); Shoreham: The Buckingham Arms; Lewes: The Gardener's Arms; Worthing: The Selden Arms), or by post from SCBCF Ticket Sales, 14 Clover Lane, Ferring, Worthing, BN12 5LZ (Tel: 01903 504409). For postal applications, please state the session(s) for which you require tickets, and enclose an SAE with your payment, which should be by cheque or Postal Order made payable to “CAMRA Sussex Beer Festival”. To avoid disappointment on the day it is advisable to buy tickets in advance particularly for the very popular Friday and Saturday evening sessions (please note - the Brighton & Hove Centres ticket offices have already sold out of tickets for Friday evening). The ticket price includes a souvenir programme and, for CAMRA members, beer tokens worth £2 on presentation of their membership card. For the Saturday evening, a £2 concession will be available to students buying tickets at the Hove Centre on production of a Students’ Union card.

If you need to get hold of Mike, he can be contacted on 01273 386659, or at mikethepipe@ntlworld.com, or go to www.sussexbeerfestival.co.uk for further information.

Mike Lockyer
Festival Organiser

 

 

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