Check out our newsJohn the Gardner’s wanderings through the world of beer festivals

Reviews of beer festivals from the past years
and other interesting stories from the western front.

FestivalThe last of the summer beer before heading into winter… – John the Gardner

October 13, 20190

It’s off to the old town beer festival at Christ Church, this is a good one and getting better. A very wide range of beers and good food available and no problem with taking your own either. This year was to help with the church roof appeal and the Swindon food collective (Food Banks). Note to Tom: do you provide the coolers still?

Now I am off to Gloucester – I just love the sight up the old Blackfriars Priory – it is brilliant to go around lots of beer and lots of food including the Gloucester Cheese company. Just a short walk away from Gloucester railway station.

Closer to home now, it is the Red Lion summer beer festival it is now June and I have hit 67 so I am going to party. A very interesting range of beers including some from the Hop Kettle and very varied Cider range. It is Cricklade, so transport can be a problem with a limited bus service, but it is well worth the trip so do your best to get there next year.

Back on the bus again – this time to the Device’s festival. The problems with people bringing their own drink onto the site is being sorted. The rules are strictly enforced by the security team. It is very busy and a great fun festival with food available and you can take your own. My little team had a great time. You have to watch the bus times and any connections that you might need.

The Angel Purton. Congratulations to the new team for putting together a fine small beer festival. If you are ‘busing’ it from Swindon, the last bus is at 3pm. I look forward to seeing what they follow this up with next year. Now I am off to Cropody to Fairport Conventions festival. At the two village pubs its fringe so you don’t need to be at the main festival. Their aim is to take small breweries and Micros to big sites and they do a stormingly good job.

Now by bus and train its off to Morton in March for the last of the summer festivals. Local food and a wide range of beers. Good bands camping available, it has developed over the last 4 years that I have been going. It’s a great festival with a good feel. Trains to and from Swindon are good. But don’t go to Reading change at Didcot / Oxford or you will hit the London surcharge. That’s it for now – lots more to go to and the good news for me at least is that I have not fallen over since the Chippenham debacle in the spring. So it’s John the Wandering Garden signing out until my next exhibition.

On a final note, it has been tremendously rewarding to be approached by the great many people wanting to understand where best to have a good drink and how to put on a successful beer festival. You all know who you are – thank you and I hope it all works out.

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