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East Anglian Beer and Cider Festival sets up for St Edmundsbury Cathedral event




The barrels rolled in and the beer glasses were delivered to St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds, yesterday in preparation for the opening of the 29th East Anglian Beer and Cider Festival tonight.

Organised by the West Suffolk and Borders Branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra), the festival will be letting visitors through the doors, over six days, to sample more than 200 real ales and 40 ciders.

To accompany that, the festival's sound stage will see acts such as Morris dancers, a Beatles tribute band and a Last Night at the Proms.

On what he hopes the return of the festival will bring, Martin Bate, festival organiser, said: "The cathedral are very keen for more people to see this wonderful space here and to experience the venue, from a beer and cider point of view, I think it is a good opportunity for people to learn more about beer and cider.

"We get a lot of people who have not tried real ale before and they find out there is quite a range and hopefully that gets them to go away after and try it in their local pubs."

At 6pm tonight, the festival will be officially opened by the Very Reverend Joe Hawes, Dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral, and paying tribute to our armed forces and emergency services, members of those will be given free admission on the showing of forces I.D. or blue light cards.

Paul Cooper, West Suffolk and Borders branch secretary, said: "We have done it once before, in 2019, we just thought it was so important to recognise those that have selflessly helped others during the pandemic. It gives a little bit back and it just felt like the right thing to do.

"We are privileged to have the Honington Military Wives Choir coming to sing for us following the opening of the festival as well and that is nice, it will bring the whole thing together, the big thank you for the help those special people have given us."

Since its inception, the event has donated more than £100,000 to charities and good causes from its proceeds.

The like of St. Edmundsbury Cathedral and St Nicholas Hospice as well as other charities and good causes will benefit this year.

For full details on the beer and cider festival, go to burystedmundsbeerfestival.com

Dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral Joe Hawes and Martin Bate. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral Joe Hawes and Martin Bate. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Preparations for the Bury Beer Festival at the cathedral. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Preparations for the Bury Beer Festival at the cathedral. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Volunteer Dick Holland tapping the first beer. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Volunteer Dick Holland tapping the first beer. Picture by Mecha Morton.
The sound stage at the beer and cider festival. Picture by Robert Robertson.
The sound stage at the beer and cider festival. Picture by Robert Robertson.
Martin Bate and Paul Cooper in the outside marquee of the festival. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Martin Bate and Paul Cooper in the outside marquee of the festival. Picture by Mecha Morton.
The festival's outside marquee overlooked by St Edmundsbury Cathedral. Picture by Robert Robertson.
The festival's outside marquee overlooked by St Edmundsbury Cathedral. Picture by Robert Robertson.
Preparations for the Bury Beer Festival at the cathedral. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Preparations for the Bury Beer Festival at the cathedral. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Arthur and Sandra Frampton from Avalon Wholesale and Brewing. Based in Ashcott, Somerset, delivering beer to the festival. Picture by Robert Robertson.
Arthur and Sandra Frampton from Avalon Wholesale and Brewing. Based in Ashcott, Somerset, delivering beer to the festival. Picture by Robert Robertson.

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