FEATURE: Cumberland Arms Summer Beer Fest | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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It’s summer, so that means we’re all a bit more likely to sit back, catch some sun and enjoy a refreshing beer. Or two or three. Or, in the case of The Cumberland Arms over 120. The B&B’s beer festivals have been steadily increasing in popularity and why not? With such an array of activities on offer beside the beer tasting, their weekend-long events have become a staple peoples’ calendars. This time round the event is bigger than ever, with even more musical acts getting the crowd in the party spirit, more activities for families and, of course, an even wider variety of refreshing beverages for punters to partake in.

We talked to Jo from the Cumby ahead of the event to find out more about what’s new for this year, what to do if you’re not much of a beer drinker and not being beaten by the Great British Weather.

Can you tell us a bit about what’s happening across the three days of the summer beer fest?

Friday we have Triptik Music taking over the beer terrace with live sets from Grey Tapes’ OCELOT and Sean Cotterill, and DJs sets from Ricky Bonewell, Niall Bert Verso, Timothy McVicar and Tim Shaw. Saturday we bring our night The People’s Playlist outside with the Soul Edition with DJ Ross Duffy. Sunday we have a full day of bands, including House of the Black Gardinia, Kissed, Stephen Newton, Gypsy Dave Smith and the Booka Brass Band plus story tellers Doom & Bloom. We also have food from Papa Ganoush, the Fat Hippo and Le Petit Creperie.

Apparently there’s two new bars at the summer beer fest; can you tell us a bit about them and what they’re offering? 

We are having a dedicated cider bar in the venue which will also have a couple cask and kegged beers too. We also have an extra outside bar sponsored by Fentimans, which will be offering cocktails, spirits and mixers.

There’s over 120 different beverages to try at the event; can you recommend a few to us? 

Oh goodness. I am particularly looking forward to the sours on offer from Northern Alchemy, Almasty and Out There which are all local breweries. Allendale have created a special brew for us too. We also took a trip to Manchester to pick up a great array of beers from some fantastic breweries.

“There are so many beers on offer that we hope there is something that everyone will like”

What would you recommend doing for someone who isn’t that big of a beer drinker? 

There are so many beers on offer that we hope there is something that everyone will like. We offer tasters to try and help people find something they like. For those who definitely don’t drink beer we have the Fentimans Bar outside and the cider bar upstairs.

What about people who have kids? If we bring little ones along during the day, will there be anything to keep them entertained? 

We have loads going on for the kids on Sunday. We have plenty of outside games and The Moon Booth are coming back this year. There will be face painting from Glitterati and candyfloss, plus new for this year: an ice cream van!

The Great British Summer is wonderfully unpredictable. If it rains – though hopefully it won’t – then will the festivities move indoors? 

We go on outside regardless! We have plenty of coves, umbrellas and gazebos so we just keep going.

What are you personally most looking forward to about the event? 

I can’t really pick, it is my favourite weekend of the year. There is always such a great atmosphere it’s hard not to love it all.

The Cumberland Arms Summer Beer Festival takes place between Thursday 16th and Sunday 19th July.

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