When and where the 2021 East Anglian Beer & Cider Festival is happening

The East Anglian Beer and Cider Festival getting underway on Sarturday, May 4 Picture: MARIAM GHAEMI

A previous East Anglian Beer and Cider Festival getting underway at the Apex in Bury St Edmunds - Credit: Mariam Ghaemi

A popular beer and cider festival is returning to Bury St Edmunds - but this year it will be held in the cathedral.

The West Suffolk and Borders branch of CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale) has unveiled ambitious plans for a ‘comeback’ festival at St Edmundsbury Cathedral from Wednesday, August 25, until Monday, August 30.

The 29th East Anglian Beer & Cider Festival will coincide with the town’s annual Food & Drink Festival and late summer Bank Holiday weekend.

Visitors enjoy the East Anglian Beer and Cider festival at The Apex in Bury St Edmunds.Pic - Richa

The East Anglian Beer & Cider Festival will be taking place this August after being cancelled last year - Credit: Richard Marsham

Over the six days, there will be more than 200 real ales, 40 ciders, food stalls, a sound stage and full entertainment programme.

Last year's beer and cider festival was one of countless events to bite the dust during the coronavirus pandemic.

Martin Bate, beer festival organiser, said: “We’re so excited that St Edmundsbury Cathedral will be the home for our festival this year.

"It’s a fabulous venue and, we believe, holding a beer festival in a cathedral will be a first!”

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The Reverend Canon Philip Banks, Precentor at the cathedral, said: “The cathedral is a versatile space at the heart of the community, serving the people of Bury St Edmunds and the county of Suffolk.

"We are delighted to work in partnership with CAMRA to welcome visitors from near and far to the beautiful setting of the cathedral for this unique new venture”.

Proceeds from the Beer & Cider Festival have, in the past, benefited many charities with over £100,000 donated.

This year, alongside the cathedral, other beneficiaries will include St Nicholas Hospice Care. Smaller local charities and worthwhile causes are also invited to apply for support.

Mr Bate added: “The festival will continue the format so popular in 2019, using the cathedral’s indoor and outdoor spaces.

"We plan to offer real ale and craft beers, cider and a wide range of other drinks, festival food and entertainment, including a tribute band night, and a family-focussed session.

"We expect to showcase the best of British brewing, with regional bars in the cathedral Nave, and an East Anglian focus outside.”

Mike Kirkham, of the Our Bury St Edmunds Business Improvement District (BID), said: “We’re delighted that the CAMRA festival coincides with our Food & Drink Festival.

"With both festivals being held in our historic and beautiful town centre they will cement Bury St Edmunds’ position as one of the country’s leading food and drink destinations.”

More details will be released on the beer festival website.

For more information about the food and drink festival visit the BID website.

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