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16th Moreton Beer Festival Report


September 8th to 9th 2023

North Cotswold Branch of the Campaign for Real Ale


  The North Cotswold branch of CAMRA staged the 16th festival at Moreton Cricket Club on the weekend of 8th/9th September. After a wet previous week outstanding continuous sunshine enabled both set up and the actual Festival felt like we were in the southern Spain. An attendance of 1650 exceeded the 1450 last year. Keeping the beer cool was our biggest challenge requiring 170 icepacks to supplement our normal fans and wet towels.


   A range of 50 beers were available with 35 sourced from three counties of Herefordshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire with 15 local beers. Thanks to the beer selection team and the Good Beer Company. The beer styles included pale ale, bitters, porters, stouts and mild.


^ Beer set up and ready to go Friday ^

^ All Ciders & Perry still available Saturday, except the winner ^


   A broad range of 25 ciders and perry came from Hereford, Gloucestershire and Kent chosen by our Cider coordinator James Fry. In total 75 choices for drinkers to enjoy.


  Friday opened at 11am and the crowds started to build. Afternoon entertainment was provided by Eden Bay, our own James Long with his brother-in-Law Joe playing a long set on stage followed by Improvements to fencing and signage assisted the entrance arrangements and access arrangements.



 ^ Eden Bay ^

  <<  Throughout the weekend, local Butcher R & D Walker provided extensive catering from the main beer tent, including pulled pork, burgers, faggots, and chilli. This proved very popular as usual.


  Having the catering and beer sales in the same larger tent for the first time worked very well,

  The crowds built up during Friday, tasting the range of quality ale and ciders. CAMRA members from near and far turned out in force, many who had attended all previous fifteen festivals. >>>

  <<<  The Dropouts, who rocked the evening from 8pm to 11pm rounded off a very busy Friday.


  The winning cider, Prior’s Tipple Elderflower Infusion, (6.5%) a Medium Cider from Stanton Glos, ran out at 9:20 pm on Friday Evening.  >>>





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   <<<<   The first beer to run out on Friday night was RBA’s Midnight Orange (5.5%) an American Porter from RBA Brewery from Derby so winning Beer of the Festival.


   The Local Beer of the Festival was Drovers Return (5.0%) from Cotswold Lion Brewery.


      More campers and caravans arrived for the Saturday 11am opening. The B Flats from Cheltenham played the first set then Barrons and Hall a duo from Shipston followed, both appreciated by a record Saturday afternoon crowd. Regular band Good Intent played the evening session playing from 8pm to 11pm Locals turned out in numbers as usual swelling the audience with more dancers enjoying the set than seen for some years.


  <<  We kept the bar open till late on Saturday, with still plently of beer and cider to serve out by closing time.



   Thanks to all our helpers, sponsors and to Moreton Cricket Club for the venue and in particular Branch Chairman Roger Price who actively recruited 14 new CAMRA members who signed up through the weekend. Thanks to our usual stalwarts who worked tirelessly on Sunday morning packing up the empty barrels, racking for collection, and clearing the site.


^^ The entrance area  ^^


       Many thanks to all for a great festival, come back next year for the 17th Festival on 13/14th September 2024.

Report by: Martin Jones, Moreton Festival Director. Photos by Roger Price & Peter Rowe