GLASSES will be more than half empty when real ale lovers descend on Stratford Beer and Cider Festival next weekend.
The tenth annual festival takes place at Stratford Racecourse on Friday and Saturday (June 10 and 11) – serving until 11pm.
Organised by Shakespeare branch of the Campaign for Real Ale, this year’s event will be the biggest yet featuring 70 real ales as well as a selection of ciders and perries.
The event will be officially opened on Friday evening by Stratford Mayor Juliet Short after which a judging panel will select the champion bitter of the West Midlands.
The theme for this year’s event is ‘Wales, The West and the Best’ with around half of the ales coming from Wales and the West Country.
And as well as offering visitors ales from regional and national breweries, the festival will also give visitors the chance to try locally brewed beers from Shipston, Alcester and the north Cotwolds.
More than £8,000 has been raised for the nearby Shakespeare Hospice since 2007 and as festival organisers are hoping to add to that total.
Live music, food and a CAMRA membership stand will be available along with camping facilities for those who wish to stay overnight.
There will also be a minibus shuttle running from the railway station to Rother Street and then onto the racecourse.
Organiser Julian Stobinski said: “This is a wonderful event held in great surroundings with a great choice of beers, ciders and perries you would not normally see in the Stratford area so we look forward to welcoming people there.”
Visit www.stratfordbeerfestival.org.uk or search @SoABeerFestival on Twitter for more information.