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Great Train Robbery theme for this year's Redhill Beer Festival
10:54am Friday 6th September 2013 in News
East Surrey's ale lovers can drink to the return of the Redhill Beer Festival next month.
The ninth annual three-day celebration of beers, ciders and perries will be taking place at Merstham Village Hall in Station Road North, Merstham, from Thursday, October 31, through to Saturday, November 2.
And in keeping with past year's, the ninth event will be taking another local theme for its logo - the 50th anniversary of the Great Train Robbery.
The notorious mail train robbery was planned in and around Merstham and Redhill, and the beer festival programme will include a short article about it.
Organisers the East and Mid-Surrey branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) will again be laying on 70 beers, ciders and perries, and are hoping to try out a new bar lay-out.
Publicity officer Kit Packham said: “If successful, it should lead to less crowding and perhaps greater capacity - something the festival’s fans have been asking for almost every year.”
Last year, the festival recorded an increase in business, with over-all attendance up by 7% on 2011.
It drew more than 1,000 people to down its brews, with one group of ale lovers flying in from Cologne, Germany, specially for one day.
The total of 68 ales sourced countrywide from Cornwall to Orkney, which the festival began with, was cut to just ten by the time the event closed.
Outlining this year's choice of brews on offer, Mr Packham said: “The rich variety of styles and strengths will include bitters of varying strengths, as well as milds, porters, stouts and olds.”
He said: “Ales from local microbreweries and popular favourites from previous years will return, alongside new selections from all over the UK.
“A small selection of ciders and perries – which are like cider but made from pears instead of apples - will also be available, so there should be something for all tastes.”
There will also be hot and cold food available at all sessions and souvenir T-shirts and a range of CAMRA publications and products will also be on sale.
The festival is run entirely by volunteers organised by CAMRA branch members. The doors will open at noon on Thursday, October 31, and will remain open until 11pm. The same times will apply on Friday, November 1, while on Saturday, November 2, the event will run from noon until 6pm - or until the beer runs out. Admission on Saturday will be free, although a £2 deposit will be charged for a souvenir glass, which may be kept or alternatively returned for a full refund.
There will also be “early bird special” rates on the Thursday and Friday for those who can attend in the first few hours.
The organisers recommend avoiding the peak time of 5pm to 8pm on the first two days if possible, when there may be queues.
There will be a £1 discount for CAMRA members at all fee-paying sessions. The programme is included with admission.
The proposed list of available beers and other details can be viewed at the event website: www.camrasurrey.org.uk/festivals/festivals-redhill For general details call the organiser, Clive Jennings, on 01737 778711, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org