Ashes-themed eighth Edgworth beer festival raises £10,000

The Bolton News: Staff and volunteers at the Edgworth Real Ale Festival Staff and volunteers at the Edgworth Real Ale Festival

THE eighth Edgworth Beer Festival was a resounding success and raised nearly £10,000 for charity, according to organisers.

Beer lovers flocked to the Barlow Institute in Edgworth on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with the festival attracting as many as 800 people over the course of the weekend.

More than 60 ales were on offer at the Ashes-themed festival, with the money raised going to the Motor Neurone Disease Association and the Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research Charity.

“It was a great weekend, with some excellent beer, lovely weather and plenty of visitors on all three days,” said the festival’s chairman Alex Docherty.

“We had a mix of regular customers and some new faces which was great to see.

“We are just unwinding now with the left-over beer after all the hard work.”

Hay Rake, a brewery from Littleborough, near Rochdale, proved the festival’s star seller, with all their beers “particularly well received”, according to Mr Docherty.

The festival has become something of an institution locally, having raised a whopping £58,000 for good causes in the seven previous years.

Each year a theme is chosen, with the Ale-lympics selected in 2012 and the War of the Roses in 2011.

This year, to mark the England cricket team’s crushing test series win against Australia, the Ashes was chosen.

Alongside the grand bar selling the numerous ales was a small fridge selling cans of Foster’s lager, which revellers were encouraged to direct jibes at.

“I’m pleased to report that while the English ales sold in great numbers, the Foster’s fridge was left full when we shut on Sunday,” said Mr Docherty.

The success of the weekend had special relevance to organisers, with the Leukaemia and Lymphoma charity chosen in tribute to Steve Simpson, a founding member of the festival’s committee, who died last year of blood cancer.

Spirits were dampened slightly, however, by conmen using fake banknotes to pay for pasties.

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