Stowmarket pub's beer festival returns after two-year break due to Covid

Staff at the Gladstone Arms looking forward to the beer festival

Staff at The Gladstone Arms looking forward to the beer festival - Credit: Carl Pearson

A beer festival featuring drinks from dozens of breweries is returning in Stowmarket next month.

The Gladstone Arms will be hosting its seventh annual beer celebration over the Easter weekend.

The pub has not been able to host the event for the last two years due to the Covid pandemic, with manager Carl Pearson saying he was excited to put on the festival once again.

He said: "I'm looking at up to 44 different breweries at the moment — I try to get as many new breweries involved as we can, from all over the country. 

"Some local breweries likely to send beer include Ampersand, from Diss, Shortts, from Thornton, and Three Blind Mice from Ely.

"I'm particularly looking forward to a beer by Three Blind Mice, which is aged for 24 months in a whisky barrel.

"We're going to have beers from 2.5 to 17% ABV, including stouts, milds, pale beers — everything you can think of. We will also have 14 different varieties of real cider on at once.

The bar at the beer festival in 2019

The bar at the beer festival in 2019 - Credit: Gladstone Arms

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"While it's mostly a local affair, at previous events I've spoken to people from all over East Anglia who have come along to try the rare beers."

The event will be taking place from Thursday, April 14 to Sunday, April 18 at the Gladstone Arms, in Poplar Hill in Stowmarket.

Entry will be free for drinkers. 

Mr Pearson also said the pub had arranged for a number of Suffolk musicians to play over the weekend to add to the atmosphere.

He said: "We'll have live music on Friday and Saturday night.

"On Friday, we have Ben Smith, who will be playing acoustic guitar, while on Sunday rock band The Landed will be performing."

Musicians playing at a previous year's event

Musicians playing at a previous year's event - Credit: Gladstone Arms

Mr Pearson added: "Year on year, the festival has grown more and more popular. We tend to have a few hundred people in on a peak day, such as Easter Sunday. 

"We're just hoping people remember we hold an Easter beer festival from before the pandemic."

More information on the beer festival can be found on The Gladstone Arms' Facebook page.