Pendle Beer Festival ‘biggest and best’

Pendle Beer Festival at Colne Muni.'Photo Ben Parsons
Pendle Beer Festival at Colne Muni.'Photo Ben Parsons

The 11th Pendle Beer Festival is now just over a week away and organisers are hoping for a record-breaking celebration of all things ale.

The 2015 festival starts next Thursday afternoon (February 5th) and will take over The Muni, Colne, all day on Friday and Saturday, too.

This year’s theme centres around the number 40 as the East Lancashire branch of CAMRA celebrated its 40th anniversary this month.

To reflect that, members of the festival’s organising committee have been hard at work bringing together a mix of breweries that existed 40 years ago, as well as ales crafted within a distance of Pendle’s boundary to mark the borough’s four-decade anniversary in 2014.

New breweries at the festival within a yard of ale’s distance of Pendle include Brewsmith in Ramsbottom and Wigan based breweries Hophurst and Martland Mill and, if that isn’t enough to entice the ale connoisseurs, 24 British Beer Festival winning brews will be available to try.

Those who have completed dry January and all who have suffered with 12-months of festival withdrawal symptoms will have a total line-up of 130 different ales to look forward to across the three-day extravaganza.

In addition, a choice of 20 ciders and perries and a dozen continental bottled lagers to suit all tastes will be offered up.

Festival bar manager Terry Hartley said: “The Pendle Beer Festival is a great event, one of the best and the biggest in the North West now.

“I can’t think of another one in the region that matches it outside of the big cities of Manchester and Liverpool.

“We get people coming from all over the place. I was speaking to a man last year who had come up especially from the south on the train for it.

“It’s quite funny really, because you always know on the hour when the next train has arrived in to Colne from the west of the county because a queue forms at the door.

“I would urge anybody not sure about a beer festival to give it a go. There is such a range available at a festival and if you’re not sure, ask somebody you can point you in the direction of what to try.”

As usual, money raised will go to Pendleside Hospice and the charity benefited from £7,500 from 2014’s event. You can still sponsor a barrel of beer by contacting Pendleside Hospice on 440100.

There is no music on the opening Thursday night, but there will be on Friday evening and throughout Saturday.

On the Thursday, the festival will be open from 4-30pm until 11pm and entry will be £3 all day.

On the Friday, opening hours are between 11-30am and 11pm. Entry is £3 before 6pm and £5 after 6pm while Saturday’s opening times will also be from 11-30am until 11pm with entry at £3 all day.

CAMRA members will get free entry on production of a valid membership card.

Keep an eye out on www.pendlebeerfestival.co.uk for up to date information on bands, beers and everything else.