24 October 2013: Sussex Branches of CAMRA Beer
& Cider Festival XXIV, Hove Centre, 6-8 March 2014
There really has never been a better time to discover real ale,
with over twelve hundred breweries in the United Kingdom, including
nearly forty in Sussex, producing over 5,000 different beers. Unfortunately
we can’t have as many beers as that on sale at the 24th Sussex
Branches Beer & Cider Festival but there will be over 220 specially
selected real ales to choose from. Cider and perry lovers will have
more than forty ciders and perries available. There will also be
an excellent selection of British Real Ales in a Bottle and of foreign
beers from all over the world.
To help soak up those pints there will be a variety of food on
sale, including vegetarian and vegan choices. Smart
T’s will have his usual stall selling his unique brand
of T shirts. Kaz and Camilla from Ace Faces will be doing face painting
and temporary tattoos. Olives & Things will also have their
stall selling a variety of olives, antipasti, nuts and crispy snacks.
As in previous years, there will be a live band on the Saturday
night and this year it will be The Wessex Pistols.
All bars will operate a token system with each token being worth
10p. Refunds will be given only for whole £s before time is
called at the bar. Any surplus tokens, as well as any spare cash
you have, can be donated to this year’s two festival charities:
St Peter and St James Hospice, Chailey, and The Rosemary Mount Care
Please bear in mind that real ale takes at least two days to settle
before it can be served, so the earlier you can get to the festival
the greater the choice of beer available. Tickets will go on sale
from 13 January to 28 February 2014 at the following outlets: Evening
Star, Brighton; Beer Essentials, Horsham; Bell, Hove; Gardener’s
Arms, Lewes; Stanley Arms, Portslade; Buckingham Arms, Shoreham
by Sea; Selden Arms, Worthing.
Centre Box Office will also be selling tickets but please note
that there is a booking fee when buying tickets through their website
or by phone. No tickets will be on sale at the Hove Centre other
than at the door while the festival is open. A minimum of 100 tickets
will be on sale at the door before each of the five sessions. For
postal sales, please send a 9x4 SAE with your payment to SCBCF
Tickets Sales, 16 Connell Drive, Woodingdean, Brighton BN2 6RT.
Please state which session(s) you require with cheques or postal
orders made payable to Sussex CAMRA Beer Festival.
The trade session will take place on the Thursday from 3-5pm when
invited representatives of breweries, cider makers and licensed
premises will have the chance to sample up to ten different beers,
have the opportunity to speak to other landlords and for brewers
and cider producers to market their products.
See the back cover of this issue for times and ticket prices, or
keep an eye on this . The ticket price will include a free souvenir
glass and festival programme. For card-carrying CAMRA members there
will be £2 worth of beer tokens available from the CAMRA membership
stand. On Saturday night holders of a valid NUS card will receive
a 50% reduction on their ticket price, either at the door or at
the Brighton Centre Box Office. If you look under 25, please bring
a photo ID and please note that there will be no admission at any
sessions for under-18s, with the exception of babies or small children
in push chairs only, accompanied by their parents, during the early
sessions. Bags may be inspected at all times.
Finally, for all of those who enjoyed yourselves at the 2013 festival,
spare a thought for the volunteers who served you. All are unpaid
workers who do the job because of their love of real ale or cider.
All CAMRA festivals are run by CAMRA members who do a variety of
jobs, many behind the scenes setting up, taking down and selling
tokens and so the list goes on. But serving you the drinker is,
I think, the most important. Who wants to wait to be served? You
would much rather be looking at your programme thinking about your
So this is where you, the Sussex CAMRA member comes in. This year
we didn’t have enough workers for some sessions but particularly
the Saturday lunchtime session. We managed but only just! I know
next year’s festival is four months away but PLEASE think
now about volunteering to work at it.
You will be well looked after, I can assure you. There is a chance
to sample the beers or ciders, a meal, a festival T-shirt, free
transport home and other goodies.
So, to all of the workers who couldn’t make it in 2013 and
to all you new volunteers, I hope to see you all 6, 7 &
8 March 2014.
All enquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org or 07450 656148; www.sussexbeerfestival.co.uk.
Peter Mitchell and John Kirkland
Joint Festival Organisers