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All hail the ale - the Cambridge Beer Festival is back

It’s back - after a wait of four years because of the pandemic, the Cambridge Beer Festival opens today (Monday, May 22) on Jesus Green.

Enjoying the 46th Cambridge Beer Festival on Jesus Green in 2019. Picture: Keith Heppell
Enjoying the 46th Cambridge Beer Festival on Jesus Green in 2019. Picture: Keith Heppell

It is one of the largest beer festivals in the country and is the longest-running Camra (Campaign for Real Ale) festival. A staple fixture in many calendars, it usually runs for six days in the run-up to the late May bank holiday.

This year, visitors can choose from a range of 193 beers, more than 80 ciders and perries, 133 international beers, mead and British wine. There are several food options, including the renowned Cambridge Beer Festival cheese counter.

Festival organiser Anthony Mobbs said: “I’m extremely pleased to be back on Jesus Green in 2023. All our volunteers have put in months of work to get to this point, and it’s hugely gratifying that we’re able to open our doors once again.

“Although some of our pre-sale tickets have now sold out, there’s still plenty of space – we reserve 80 per cent of tickets for people to pay on the door.”

The weather forecast is promising, with dry and warm conditions until the festival closes on Saturday (May 27) – and your pint should arrive in perfect condition thanks to a cooling system that circulates chilled water over the beer casks at around 20 litres per second.

The festival opening hours are 5pm-10.30pm on Monday, noon-3pm and 5pm-10.30pm Tuesday to Friday, and noon-10.30pm on Saturday. Lunchtime sessions are free, and entry is free for all sessions for Camra members.

Each's fundraising and communications team. Picture: Each
Each's fundraising and communications team. Picture: Each

East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (Each) says it is “thrilled and honoured” to be the charity partner for the festival which usually raises more than £25,000 for a good cause.

Each community fundraiser Helena Davis said: “We’re thrilled and honoured to have been selected as charity partner. We know what a difference it has made to other worthy causes in our county and see this as an incredible opportunity, allowing us to raise a fantastic amount and also heighten awareness.”

The Each team will be at every festival session.

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