Roll out the barrels for a festival of LocAles: Oct 10-12

ROBERT CANNING previews Croydon’s answer to Oktoberfest next week

real ale beerCroydon’s beer drinkers will soon be raising their glasses at the 20th annual local Real Ale Festival, being staged at Wallington Hall, Stafford Road, from next Thursday.

Around 60 real ales will be available, all of which are “LocAle” as they are brewed within 30 miles of the Croydon and Sutton Real Ale Festival. Featured tipples include those from Croydon’s own Clarence & Fredericks and Cronx breweries.

Festival goers can also look forward to more than 15 UK-produced ciders and perries and an exciting range of bottled beers, mostly from Europe. Festival glasses and hot and cold food will also be available.

The doors open at noon next Thursday, October 10, with time called at 6pm on the Saturday, October 12. Admission is free until 4pm on Thursday and Friday, with free admission all day Saturday.

Each year the festival also supports a local charity. This year’s charity is Homestart, which provides support, friendship and practical help to families with at least one child under five.

As usual, the festival is run entirely by volunteer members of the Campaign for Real Ale which, in addition to organising beer festivals, campaigns on a range of issues that affect drinkers such as consumer rights and protecting community pubs.

This is more important than ever, with 28 pubs across the country closing every week. Croydon has already seen many popular pubs closed and boarded up or converted into flats, offices or supermarkets.

Lost gems include the Swan and Sugarloaf in South End, the Cricketers Arms in Southbridge Place and the Ship of Fools in West Croydon. The Red Deer on Brighton Road is the latest pub to be under threat from conversion into yet another local supermarket.

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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email
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