We would like to welcome all our festival goers whether old or new to our first ever virtual Beer and Cider Festival. We originally were going to hold our festival at the traditional time at the end of May but at the request of Stockport County we moved it to 7th to 9th May. Along came the virus and the actual festival was cancelled.
The last festival went tremendously well, cementing our position as one of the leading community-based beer and cider festivals in the North. As part of that community spirit we have been encouraging local home brewers through a competition, with the prize of brewing their beer in collaboration with a local commercial brewer and this year they have really come up trumps. Unfortunately, you will not be able to taste the winners on Bar Nouveau until 2021, along with the 2021 winners until the 2021 festival. We also had planned with a special focus on North East beers for the first time but again that will have to wait. On our Real Ale in the Bottle Bar we had ordered some more remarkable beers from across the Greater Manchester, UK, Europe and beyond.
We also had in mind a marvellous and wide choice of cider and perry for you to try as is customary, from sweet through to dry and our experts on the Cider and Perry Bar were all ready to assist you to find that drink to suite your palate.
To go with the unsurpassed fare on offer on the bars, downstairs we had some outstanding entertainment but I’m sure that will wait until next year.
We have a very deserving festival charity, Supportability (ex-Stockport Cerebral Palsy), which provides a wide range of activities and support for local adults with physical and/or learning disabilities and autistic spectrum conditions. They are really suffering with the loss of income and I would urge you to support them as much as possible. One option is to buy some beer from that great local brewery Shindigger, who will make a donation for every bottle/can you buy. Even better donate some of the money you are saving by not going down the pub or attending the festival by making a direct donation to them.
Finally, please join me in thanking my friends and colleagues on the organising committee only to have the festival cruelly taken away from them.
As somebody who has already suffered having caught Covid 19 I would urge you all to please take care and socially distance; it is a very unpleasant and cruel virus. In the fullness of time we will be able to again taste the delights of cask beer and traditional cider which is something to really look forward to.