A treat for beer lovers as fourth City of Ale festival starts today

Last year’s City of Ale launch in Norwich. Left to right Phil Cutter, Sheriff Graham Creelman, Lord Mayor Keith Driver and Dawn Leeder before getting on the bus heading for the launch party. Photo: Steve Adams
David Bale david.bale2@archant.co.ukThursday, May 22, 20147:27 AM

Beer lovers are heading to Norwich for the start of the City of Ale festival, which kicks-off today with a launch party at Dragon Hall in King Street.

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The 10-day celebration of local pubs, breweries and real ales, which runs until Sunday, June 1, will include live music, sport, quizzes and barbecues.
Phil Cutter, landlord at the Murderers in Timberhill, Norwich, and co-chairman of the festival with Dawn Leeder, said: “This year we have 44 pubs which our local CAMRA colleagues have grouped into seven ale trails, totalling just over nine miles.
“We have more than 200 beers on offer from 39 local breweries. There are also around 200 events promising a fantastic festival atmosphere throughout the city.”
Warren Wordsworth, chairman of the Norwich and Norfolk branch of CAMRA, has been involved with City of Ale since the first planning meetings in December 2010.
He said: “Over the years this festival has gone from strength to strength.
“Here in Norwich we are so fortunate to live in a city that has such great real ale pubs and in an area that has so many good breweries. This event celebrates all that is best about Norwich pubs and local breweries.”
This year’s festival should be particularly appealing to women, with a FEM.ALE festival at the Plasterers in Cowgate, starting tomorrow and running until Sunday, May 25.

Other events include a beer-tasting event with writer Roger Protz at the Earlham Arms in Earlham Road, and a Meet the Brewer session with Adnams’ head brewer Fergus Fitzgerald, at the Compleat Angler, in Prince of Wales Road, both tomorrow.
Mr Protz said City of Ale was “packed with passion and commitment to the noble cause of brewing and beer drinking”.
This year’s charity City of Ale beer, Tidal Gold, was brewed by Hindringham-based Norfolk Brewhouse. The brewery is donating 20p for each pint sold in support of the EDP’s Flood Appeal to help communities affected by last December’s tidal surge.
Meanwhile, throughout the festival, the Maids Head hotel in Tombland will be supporting the restoration of Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden’s 19th century thatched boathouse.
The hotel will be donating 5p to the boathouse project, for every pint of Maids Head Ale and Woodforde’s Wherry sold at the Maids Head Bar, from May 22 to June 1.
Have you got a story about a festival taking place in the next few weeks in your area? Email david.bale2@archant.co.uk

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