Sunday, 17 February 2019

Featured beers to ‘whet the appetite’ at February festival

Beverages from all over the world will be presented at the Great British Beer Festival Winter, the last chance to catch this rolling festival in Norwich!

As the final preparations are underway and hundreds of volunteers get ready to come together for the last February festival, Norwich and Norfolk CAMRA have given us a preview of some of their featured beers. 

In the main St Andrew’s Hall there is simply every beer of every style and season!

Starting with the subtle flavours of the golden ales, like the Hambleton Raspberry Blonde Ale or Lees Golden with light toffee sweetness and fruit-hop finish or try the berry and citrus IPAs and maybe try Oakham’s Dragon In Bavaria with tangerine, citrus and hints of rose, the Little Valleys Radical Roots Ginger Pale, or Moor’s Smokey Horyzon – a smoked, spicy beer.

The dark beer selection is equally exciting – with High Weald’s Charcoal Burner or Little Valley’s Stout with orange aroma, try Firebrick’s Cushey Butterfield (tonka bean stout) or their Conquistador (black vanilla, dark berry stout).

Take time to find out what the cider bar has to offer.  Rated from very sweet to very dry you can find the perfect ciders and perries for your palette.

If you like something sweet, try the fruit beers in the World Beer Bar, in the marquee.

Take a look in Blackfriars' Hall to discover who won the 2019 Champion Winter Beer of Britain and sample winners and finalists.  Select from a wonderful range of sweet winter beers, like the Winter’s Vanilla Latte, Boudicca’s Prasto’s Porter – a special edition with dark cherries and liquorice – or try something different like FCB’s Honey and Elderflower or Humpty Dumpty’s NBB Frisher Gerstensaft, a Koln style beer with a golden and slightly fruity taste.

Remember to visit the Brewery Bars with award-winning beers from both Lacons and Norfolk Brewhouse.

Vegetarian, Vegan and Gluten Free beers are also in plentiful supply thanks to our organising committee champions and are denoted by their respective symbols – V, VG, GF.

The World Beer Bar, managed by Cheryl Cade, has grown and will host some very special beers on limited supply.  Tuesday is the battle of the Berlinerner Weisse - Mikkeller, Ich Bin Berliner Weisse Watermelon verses the Alvinne Berlinerner Weisse, which is best? You decide!

Wednesday is USA day with Ale Smith, Speedway Stout (Hawaiian) and Jackie O’s Brewery Chomolungma or Electro Lyte lager. Thursday is ‘enter into the darkside’ including Westerham, Wally Winker Death by Chocolate and the Struise, Black Damnation Mocha Bomb 2018.

Friday is Belgian day with Hedonis Ouwen Duiker or try the Hof Ten Dormaal, Frambuesa y Chocolate (raspberry & chocolate, barrel aged).

Track the beers as they change with the live online beer listing, available here.

New to the beer festival?  Pay four(£)-on-the-door and grab your glass and beer tokens and away you go! With music on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and hot food served every day 12 noon til 10.30pm, what’s not to like?

This national CAMRA festival moves location every three years and this will be the last year it will be hosted in Norwich by the Norwich & Norfolk Branch.

The annual Norwich Beer Festival will remain a favourite fixture in the October calendars of local beer-lovers and will celebrate its 42nd year in October 2019.

Monday, 4 February 2019

Great British Beer Festival Winter to support the Benjamin Foundation

The Benjamin Foundation are the chosen charity for the Great British Beer Festival Winter 2019, taking place at The Halls, Norwich, from 19th February.

The festival commences on Tuesday 19th February 2019, with a CAMRA members preview, then opens to the public and runs until Saturday 23rd February. The festival offers beers of every season, world beers, fruit beers and ciders, with music nights and hot food served throughout each day.

To support The Benjamin Foundation, visitors to the festival may donate coins in collection tins and buckets and give remaining beer tokens to the charity in the box at the glasses stand or pop them in the buckets.  You may also visit their stand in Blackfriars’ Hall where they will be happy to talk about the information and support they provide.

Michael Ryan, Norwich & Norfolk CAMRA
Branch Secretary with Rachel Hogg,
Communications Co-ordinator of
the Benjamin Foundation
The Benjamin Foundation was founded in 1994 and since then the charity has been helping people across Norfolk, and more recently in Suffolk, to deal with some of the challenges that life throws at them; from ‘everyday’ problems such as finding affordable childcare, to heart-breaking issues such as youth homelessness, bullying or abuse.

Every service The Benjamin Foundation delivers is focused on providing hope, opportunity, stability and independence and includes:
Working to prevent youth homelessness by providing a home and support to over 100 vulnerable young adults at any time. They give the young people a stable home and provide the skills they need so they can leave and forge an independent life.
Delivering a range of services to support children, young people and families facing challenges. By helping at an early stage their work aims to prevent more serious problems arising in the future.
Providing education to pre-school children in a safe, supportive environment which gives their parents peace of mind.
Providing positive activities to young people who have limited opportunities in life – perhaps they’re caring for a parent or come from a socially deprived area. A chance to escape their day-to-day pressures and be a child again is vital.
Their store, shop and handyman service generate profits to help fund the charity, while providing helpful services for the community.

The Great British Beer Festival Winter is open to the public from Wednesday, 20th February, from 12noon until 10.30pm every day until, and including, Saturday 23rd February. 

The Halls, including Blackfriars' and St Andrew’s medieval friary complex, is also home to the Norwich Beer Festival, which is also organised by the Norwich & Norfolk Branch of CAMRA.  The festival will feature a range of ales from traditional dark ales to light summer beers and hoppy ales, alongside ciders and world beers. 

Entrance is FREE to CAMRA members and £4 to non-members (£3 Wednesday) on the door – plus advance tickets are now on sale.  There is also a Fringe Festival taking place throughout February in local pubs and venues.  For more information about The Festival and The Fringe visit

For more information about The Benjamin Foundation, please visit  For beer festival information, see

Friday, 25 January 2019

Norwich Beer Festival logo competition launched

The annual competition has been launched by CAMRA (The Campaign for Real Ale) to find the logo for the 42nd Norwich Beer Festival, taking place from Monday 21st October until Saturday 26th October 2019.

The competition has commenced early again this year as the Norwich & Norfolk branch will be hosting the Great British Beer Festival Winter (Tuesday 19th February until Saturday 23rd February 2019).  This will be the last time the branch host this event, as it moves to a different part of the country next year.  Visit for more information.

The deadline for 42nd Norwich Beer Festival logo entries is 9pm Monday 18th February 2019 and Norwich & Norfolk CAMRA are looking for innovative designs depicting a dragon of some form.

Craig Harmer, Festival Organiser, said: “Last year's entries included a wide variety of designs and styles, with many high quality logos.  We had 38 entries, and we're expecting more this year”.

As always, the essential element is that a dragon must be included within the design, although abstract is acceptable.  Also, a maximum of five solid colours (four is preferable) can be used, including any black or white parts of the design.

Entrants are asked to specify "Adult" or "Under-18" and include their name, contact details and age (if under-18) within the email.  Visit for our privacy policy.

Judging will by organised by the festival organisers and the winner will receive £100 along with a selection of merchandise featuring their logo at the festival.  There will be two runner-up prizes of complementary festival tickets, and the best under-18 entrant will receive a voucher.

All entries must be in a standard image format (JPEG, TIFF, PNG, GIF, BMP, or PDF).  Vector files are welcome as long as a standard image format is included.  Hand drawn entries are acceptable, but must be scanned or photographed. Multiple entries are also acceptable.

All entries (and queries) must be emailed to and be received before 9pm Monday 18th February 2019.  All email entries will be acknowledged.

The logo of the winner will be depicted on the festival glass, programme, and other merchandise.

All entries will become the property of the Norwich & Norfolk branch of the Campaign for Real Ale and may be used for display and publicity purposes.

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Live music line-up announced for Great British Beer Festival Winter

An exciting mix of live music, featuring some of the most popular local bands, are ready to take to the stage for this year’s Great British Beer Festival Winter.

The line-up promises to get visiting music-lovers into the festival spirit!

Preparations are well under way now for the festival to open on the Tuesday 19th February, with a CAMRA members preview from 5.30pm, and will run from Tues 19th to Sat 23rd February.

The winter beer festival takes place in the medieval halls, known as St Andrew’s and Blackfriars’ Halls and is organised by the local branch of CAMRA who also organise the ever-popular Norwich Beer Festival.

There is also a Fringe Festival taking place in Norwich pubs throughout February.  For more information about the festival and the Fringe visit

A music-free session is on Wednesday and on the busy weekend nights, visitors can still enjoy a quiet conversation in the marquee, cloisters and Blackfriars’ Hall.

Artists line up:

Thursday 21st February 2019
Evening: Dove and Boweevil (blue roots and Americana and more)

Friday 22nd February 2019
Lunch: Polymer Five (blues, rock ‘n’ roll)
Evening: The Collective (funk, soul, disco)

Saturday 23rd February 2019
Lunch: Pirate Joe and the Foreign Locals (reggae, beatbox, gypsy-folk and a whole lot more) (pictured above)
Evening: Super Action Heroes (indie rock)

Norwich hosts CAMRA February Festival

CAMRA invites festival lovers to enjoy ales of every season at Norwich’s final Great British Beer Festival Winter from 19th February 2019!

Not to be confused with a festival for winter beers alone, this has beers of every style and shade, served in cask, KeyKeg and bottle - from dark to ruby brown and golden ales, plus world beers and real ciders.

2019 will be the last chance to catch the festival in Norwich.  After, the national event moves to a different CAMRA location, as the festival moves location every three years.

The festival runs from 19th-23rd February 2019 at St Andrew's and Blackfriars' stunning medieval friary halls, opening with a preview evening for CAMRA members only.

Martin Ward, organiser, commented: ‘2019 is the final chance to catch the February festival in the historic city of Norwich.’ 

Local pubs will also be getting involved in The Fringe which runs for the whole of February, with organised crawls and treasure trails, special events, competitions, featured brewers, all in the heart of Norwich. Visit for details.

Jenny Bach, Publicity Officer added: ‘The February Fringe invites visitors to also enjoy the many characteristic real ale pubs, all in easy walking distance.’

The event has been likened to CAMRA’s national summer festival in London Olympia as ‘like it, but cosier!’.

There is also hot food and snacks served all day and live music most evenings.
As always at the event, the Champion Winter Beer of Britain competition will be judged.  Local and national brewers will compete in each category and the winners and overall winner will be announced at the opening evening.  Competition ales, including winners, can be sampled by visitors in Blackfriars' Hall.

The chosen charity is the Benjamin Foundation and visitors are invited to donate cash and unspent tokens using the glasses stand box and collection pots.

Entrance is cash-only on the door but is free to CAMRA members and is open from midday all day Wednesday to Saturday.

Pre-event ticket packages, including beer tokens and souvenir glasses, can be secured.  For ticket packages or more information on the Festival and February Fringe visit