Cheers! Ale-lovers set to enjoy a sup at Houghton Beer Festival

Organisers of this years Houghton Beer Festival get ready for action.
Organisers of this years Houghton Beer Festival get ready for action.
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Drinkers have the chance to sample dozens of different ales as an annual festival returns next month.

The fifth Houghton Beer Festival will take place on Friday, May 6, and Saturday, May 7, in the town’s Miners’ Welfare Hall, in Station Road.

Rumours had circulated there would be no festival due to falling membership of Houghton and District Round Table, which has founded and run the popular event since its inception.

However, to secure the future of the festival, Houghton 41 Club, the group for retired Round Table members, will run the event from this year onwards.

Charities set to benefit this year are the Great North Air Ambulance and St Benedict’s Hospice and Centre for Specialist Palliative Care, in Ryhope.

Ian Topliff, from the Houghton 41 Club, said: “We’re hoping that there’ll be in excess of 500 people coming over the weekend.”

Music acts Blue Diamond, John Rowe and Tubesnake will also be playing.

“We’ve got a great range of ciders on this year, about 10 different ones as we couldn’t keep up with demand last time,” added Ian. “There’ll be 25 beers on as well from plenty of local brewers.

“We’ve got to say thanks to Maxim Brewery and Camra (Campaign for Real Ale), as they’ve helped us out a lot with the preparations and helping us store the drinks.”

Festival tickets are priced at £10 for Friday’s session, starting at 6pm, £5 for Saturday afternoon, noon until 5pm, and £10 for Saturday evening, starting at 6pm. Those attending will receive a commemorative glass.

Tickets are available from Hays Travel in Mautland Street or by going to www.houghton-beer-festival.co.uk.