ROBERT CANNING previews Croydon’s answer to Oktoberfest next week
Croydon’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.
- Further information about the Croydon and Sutton branch of CAMRA and the beer festival can be found at: http://croydoncamra.org.uk/.
- Further information about Croydon Homestart is available at: http://www.croydon-homestart.co.uk/
Coming to Croydon
- Minster’s musical celebration for Silver Sunday: Oct 6
- Rent at the Secombe Theatre: Oct 9-12
- Debate the future of arts in Croydon: Oct 10
- Stanley Lives – open day in South Norwood: Oct 12
- Lakes Playground group’s fundraising Zumba-ween: Oct 26
- PJ’s enterprising look at Black History Month: Oct 29
- Inside Croydon: Croydon’s only independent news source, based in the heart of the borough – 262,183 page views (Jan-Jun 2013)
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- British beer festivals: A beginner’s guide (metro.co.uk)
- Council faces massive compensation bill over housing failings (insidecroydon.com)