Herefordshire CAMRA

18,000 REASONS FOR DECLARING BEER ON THE WYE A HIT!

The Beer on the Wye marquee returned for the tenth successive occasion to its Hereford riverside venue back in July. Following last year’s record attendance, this year numbers were slightly down, probably because the weather didn’t quite match-up to the glorious sunshine we enjoyed during the 2013 festival.

However, it is being hailed as another stunning success. Overall, 128 volunteer staff valiantly served around 18,000 pints of beer, cider and perry – not bad going, when one considers how many drinks were served in half and third-pint measures. That’s a lot of individual transactions for a festival that only ran from 2pm on a Friday to 5pm on Sunday night. And it was all accomplished without ridiculous queues at the bars, although the Cider Bar did take a bit of a hammering on the Saturday night!

Opened by Bill Wiggin MP on the Friday afternoon, this year’s Beer on the Wye X featured 121 different cask beers and the same number of perries and ciders (a hundred of which were from Herefordshire producers alone) as well as 39 different bottled foreign beers from countries as diverse as Sri Lanka, Russia, the USA and Sweden. The Beer of the Festival Gold Rosette went to Sussex-based Dark Star Brewery, for their 4.7% strength American Pale Ale – a brew with plenty of hops. Closer to home, Herefordshire Beer of the Festival was named as Jean Paul Citra from Jones the Brewer, another very hoppy beer. Finally, from Bulls Hill, just outside of Ross-on-Wye, Springherne Perry was judged to be West Midlands Perry of the Year.

CAMRA WEST MIDLANDS PERRY WINNERS
1 Springherne Cider (Bulls Hill, Ross-on-Wye) Blended Medium Perry 5.8%
2 Newton Court Cider (Newton, Leominster) Winnals Longdon Perry 5.3%
3 Barkers Real Cider & Perry (Hallow, Worcester) Upsi-daisy Perry 6.5%
The next three places were taken by Oliver's (Ocle Pychard), Gwatkin (Abbey Dore) and Snails Bank (Fownhope)

Simon Crowther, for the organising committee said: “The festival was without doubt another resounding success. It was a pleasure to see such a diverse range of people enjoying the excellent beer, cider and perry, and it was great to see how well the bands were received – the tent was really rocking on the Friday and Saturday nights. The much-improved hot food offering seemed to get a big thumbs-up too. I need to thank our many sponsors, supporters and especially the volunteer staff, for what they have helped achieve. Without their help there wouldn’t be a Beer on the Wye.”

Beer on the Wye XI will be returning to the riverside from the 10th to 12th July next year. See you there!