Get ready to enjoy a great beer at Gosport festival

CHEERS From left, Roz and Dicky Summers, Ken Wilkins and Agota Perity at last year's event
CHEERS From left, Roz and Dicky Summers, Ken Wilkins and Agota Perity at last year's event
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IT’S nearly time to raise a glass of ale at one of the biggest winter beer bashes in the south.

Gosport’s annual winter beer festival is back for the 22nd year in a row – and more drinkers than ever are being urged to go along and have fun.

The popular occasion is once again being held at Thorngate Halls in Bury Road, Gosport, on February 21 to 22.

More than 80 real ales and a selection of cider, perries and bottled beers will be available.

And this time The News will have a seat on the judging panel which decides which beers taste the best.

The event is being run by volunteers from the Campaign for Real Ale’s Portsmouth and south-east Hampshire branch.

Camra member Nigel Firth-Penney, who runs the festival’s cider bar, said: ‘It’s one of the biggest winter ale festivals in the south. It’s really become part of the social calendar in Gosport.

‘It makes for a great atmosphere. Part of its success is down to the hard-working band of Camra volunteers and the good people of Gosport.’

Hot and cold food will be available and there will be live music at three of the four sessions. The Friday afternoon session runs from noon to 4pm.

The next one that evening runs from 6.30pm to 11pm and will feature live music from The M27s.

The first session on Saturday is from 11am to 3.30pm and Portsmouth City Band will perform.

Then on Saturday night from 6.30pm to 11pm there will be live music from Shep Woolley.

Tickets are £9 per person per session, except for the Friday afternoon session which is £5. The event is for over-18s only.

With a ticket you get a programme, festival glass, half-pint of beer and £1 beer tokens for Camra members with a membership card.

To get a ticket, post a cheque payable to Portsmouth Camra, or a postal order with your evening contact number, to Portsmouth Camra, 308B Twyford Avenue, Portsmouth, PO2 8NT.

Tickets can also be bought from Queen’s Hotel, Gosport; The Crofton, Hill Head; and The Hole In The Wall and The Leopold Tavern in Southsea.