Hitchin Beer Festival Runs Out Of Beer Again!!!!

St. Paddy's from the Buntingford Brewery, named best beer of the Festival, was first to run out, then by 9pm on the Saturday night, all the beers had run out, in spite of an extra 54 gallons ordered in after a busy Friday.
Such was the demand for ale, that a queue developed outside the venue, the Old Town Hall, and a 'one out, one in' system was implemented. Frustrated boozers had to brave the local yobberyand venture into nearby pubs.
Reply to
Jupiter
Whoa whoa whoa...
Oh good. Another rant copied straight from a local press article by Mr Anonymous. For Gods sake, what is your problem with the festival and the organisers (North Herts CAMRA & the Round Table)?
For the benefit of the rest of the universe, some important facts missing from the above:
1. The licence for the event restricted numbers in the hall. Hence on occasions there was a queue to get in. A not uncommon scenario, and the reason why many festivals are ticket only.
2. Saturday night was the last night. And if the organisers could have got more beer in on the Saturday they would have done. But sadly not everyone has access to Jupiters hindsight. To run out 90 minutes or so from closing time on the last night is not a complete disaster. And it is certainly not uncommon either.
3. We ventured out to a local pub after a few hours at the festival on the Friday night, and didn't come across any of the yobbery mentioned. But maybe there wasn't any in the first place?
4. Reports of the beer of the festival may also be a bit premature, given that this info has not been officially announced to my knowledge (and I am sure I would have been told officially if it had...).
So Jupiter, were you there? I doubt it from the above. But then it is so much easier to criticise from a distance, anonymously, and with the amazing benefit of hindsight.
Just what is it you hold against the Hitchin Beer Festival, or perhaps it is against one of the volunteer groups that (successfully it would seem) work so hard to make the festival so damn popular in the first place (North Herts CAMRA & Hitchin Round Table)?
Come on, speak up that man. And stop hiding, it's not clever. And I'm sure your help as volunteer staff would be willingly accepted next year.
Steve Banfield
Reply to
Steve Banfield

I'd say that was quite good.
I went to a small beer festival here recently and was very disappointed. Doors opened at 14:00 for the general public (ticket event) and 13:00 for Beer Club members. Last orders was supposed to be at 18:30 and closing at 19:00. The first beer (a chocolate stout) ran out at 15:00 and by 16:30 everything had gone. People who turned up after 15:00 hoping to try some of the beers were probably very unhappy. I don't know as I got fed up and left before 16:30 and went to a pub for a couple of pints and a roast pork dinner!
Wayne
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Reply to
Wayne

Yep, bad organisation but BETTER than the previous year's event! The beer wasn't that impressive anyway, most Japanese micro-brewers still have a lot to learn. For me, of the beers I tried only two were worth drinking and one of those I've had many times before. The entrance ticket allowed each person 6 glasses of beer and there was a table selling extra coupons for those that had had their six. They couldn't turn away punters with tickets but they weren't selling any more beer to people already in the hall. One thing that irked me was that Beer Club members were getting almost full glasses and the 'plebs' who paid more to get in were getting theirs only half filled.
Wayne
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Registered Linux user #375994
http://www.geocities.jp/rondonko/
Reply to
Wayne
I thought the Hitchin festival was very good, although I went during the day on Saturday and didn't have the problems of having to queue to get in or being faced with rows of empty casks. There was an excellent range of ale, cider and perry for a local festival.
The queuing and running out of drink are proof of how successful it was. Thanks to everyone concerned with the organisation of the event for doing a good job, much appreciated by ordinary punters like myself.
As for the "local yobbery" aspect, Hitchin is probably no different from any other town in that the town centre is plagued by antisocial scum in the evenings especially at weekends, and the festival organisers can hardly be held responsible for the behaviour. Most of the lowlife in question frequent certain bars where they can get "well mashed" on shots 'n' alcopops, and locals know which bars to avoid. I'm sure if anyone not local had asked a member of the festival staff which pubs to go to, or which to avoid, they would have been given good advice.
SD
Reply to
Secret Drinker
Having just spoken with the local branch, it is exactly as I suspected. St Paddy did NOT win Beer Of The Festival. The winner has not yet been chosen by the branch, and it is NOT one of those shortlisted (The winner is chosen by opinion by a few of the organisers in the branch, not public opinion).
The press had run away with the idea based on it being far and away the fastest selling beer, and not any official pronouncements.
Just another reason why posters should not quote verbatim from the press - or at least not without quoting their source in the first place!
Awards do not always go to the first to sell, or to the best sellers. It depends on how they are judged, and the presence of voting forms does not always mean that the public have full say in what wins. Many are now chosen by a panel, and this is often the fairest way, as there is less potential for vote rigging, or beers being chosen on the say so of just one or two individuals
Steve Banfield
Reply to
Steve Banfield
The last Coventry beer festival I worked on (I've been idle and stayed away for a while[1]) ran out 15 minutes before the end of the Saturday session. It took nerve to keep the staff calm about the amount left at lunchtime, but I sounded confident that the beer would last and it did.
Interestingly approximately 40% of the beers were still available 90 minutes from the end - just not in large quantity.
[1] This years opens in about 45 minutes. I'm toying with the idea of visiting. It would be the first time I've been as a customer.
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Steve Pampling
Reply to
Steven Pampling

OK, the offending organ was the 'Stevenage Comet', aka 'Stevenage Vomit' - Archant Newspaper Group. As former Bar Manager for several Clubs, running out of beer is not an unknown event in that milieu, either. You could normally borrow from another establishment - anything that would take a Sankey fitting and looked the right colour would do. More often than not the punters didn't know the difference and if there were any experts you could stick a bit of paper over the font. And as for livening up the light mild with 1/2 gallon of lager, that's another story.
Reply to
Jupiter
I didn't read his post as a rant against the festival!!! It read like praise for a highly successful festival!!!!
I thought saying the beer ran out in the last hour on Sat night despite an extra 54 gallons being got in at the last minute was also saying how overwhelmingly successful it was.
I wish our beer festival was like this ...
:o((
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Chris de Cordova (West Cumbria & Western Lakes) www.westcumbriacamra.org.uk
Whitehaven Beer Festival: Oct 6th & 7th 2006 (provisional)
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Reply to
Chris de Cordova

Indeed. Mr Banfield does seem to be extremely sensitive about press reporting of the North Herts Festival. It might even be that the advance publicity with the horrible glass of fob encouraged more attendees, and there's plenty of alternatives in Hitchin Town Centre when the beer runs out.
There's no problem with left over cask conditioned beer in a permanent venue. It'll sell another day. Unsold beer at a temporary venue IS a problem. It's a problem to move it around and try to settle it again (there are ways around this but purists might object, e.g. reprime and fine, which the excise might also be interested in). Top pressure stuff is another matter.
>I wish our beer festival was like this ... > >:o((
Reply to
Jupiter

and we went. New venue, increased popularity, additional beer at the start and more brought in. Air-conditioned room and notes to people that it might be cool but that the temperature helped the beer.
We left after the lunch session and my prediction was that they were not going to make it through the evening. Must phone Paul and find out how accurate I was on the time.
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Steve Pampling
Reply to
Steven Pampling

There is an argument that giving free entry discriminates against those who have paid for entry. ie more drinkers resulting in less choice.
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Brett
Reply to
Brett...

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