Thousands cheer for the beer

Beer Festival 2013
Beer Festival 2013

More than 4,200 people raised a glass at the town’s Beer Festival at the weekend.

The annual event, held at the Winter Garden, saw 13,616 pints drunk over the three-day bash, including beers from local breweries Harveys’s, Beachy Head and Long Man plus 44 casks of cider, 11 casks of perry and plenty of wine.

The festival started with a session on Thursday evening (October 10) with more than 700 people and both Friday and Saturday night sessions were sold out well in advance with more than 1,200 visitors attending each night.

Both nights were extremely busy and visitors were entertained by an array of bands as well as classic pub games.

Thursday night included the traditional Toad competition which was won by the Rodmell Toaders.

Saturday afternoon welcomed the third session of the festival, where more 
than 1,000 beer lovers attended.

Visitors were entertained by Pocketsize and Wakin’ Snakes along with the Long Man Morris Dancers.

Eastbourne Borough Council Cabinet Member for Tourism and Leisure, Cllr Carolyn Heaps said, “The annual beer festival is a highlight in the Eastbourne events calendar and with even more beers, ciders, perries and wines to try along side delicious food and excellent entertainment; it was very successful this year.

“We would particularly like to thank our event partners the SE Sussex Branch of CAMRA and all their volunteers, along with the volunteers from our charity partners East Sussex Foster Carers, Eastbourne Mencap, Friends of Eastbourne Hospital and the Tuesday O’ Hara fund and the event sponsors Harvey’s Brewery and H T White and Co for their contribution.”

The winners of the beer awards were also announced on Saturday evening with Hastings’ Handmade Number 5 winning Beer of the Festival; Beachy Head’s Legless Rambler won the Sussex Micro Beer of the Festival and the Rochdale brewery Pictish with their Brewers Gold won the Sussex Exemption Beer of the Festival.

The CAMRA Champion Beer of Britain heats took place and saw Bingham’s Vanilla Stout take first place on the speciality beers category with Kissingate’s Black Cherry Mild as the runner up.

Tillingbourne brewery took first place in the Golden Ales category with their Falls Gold, with second place going to Brakspear’s Oxford Gold.

The most popular purchase for cider was Vision in Pink, a strawberry cider produced in Kent by Double Vision.