Around the Branch in April

Here’s news of some of what’s happening in and around our branch area over the next few weeks. It’s a bit of a long email this time but there’s a lot to talk about, including awards.

Monthly meetings

Our April monthly meeting will be at the Hoops in Barton from 8pm on Tuesday 9 April. Our monthly meetings, on the second Tuesday of the month, are open to all branch members. Feel free to attend, hear what’s going on and have a chat over a beer or two. May’s meeting will be at the NCI on Holland Street, Cambridge.

Community Pubs Month events

April is CAMRA’s Community Pubs Month. Cambridge & District CAMRA started early by holding our Gala Night on Tuesday evening. The award winners are listed at the end of this email.

On Saturday 13 April we’ll have a Strolling Social when we’ll be visiting pubs along the No.13 bus route. We’ll be starting at 12.20 in the Old Red Lion, Horseheath. We’ll then move to Linton to visit the Waggon & Horses, the Dog & Duck, the Crown Inn and Wylde Sky‘s Tap Room. After these we’ll visit the Pear Tree in Hildersham, the Three Tuns in Great Abington and, time permitting, finish in the George Inn in Babraham. Join when you like and leave as you will. For more details email me.

On Saturday 27 April we have a Minibus Mystery Tour. It will leave from the Station Road / Tenison Road junction at 11am and will return there at around 7pm. We’ll be visiting some of our rural pubs to the south and west of Cambridge. We don’t charge for the tour but we do run a raffle (£5 a ticket) that contributes towards the cost of the coach. You will need to pay for food, laid on by one of the pubs we visit, as well as for your drinks. This event is restricted to CAMRA members. To book a seat email our Social Secretary, Clive.

Local beer events

These are just some of the beer and ciders events taking place in and around our branch area over the next few weeks. Our own website and local blog Pints & Pubs have events sections that list these and more.

Regal, St Andrews Street. 27 March–7 April. Wetherspoon’s Spring Real Ale & Cider Festival. The beers will include some brewed in the UK by brewers from around the world.

Alexandra Arms, Gwydir Street. 28 March–1 April. Alex Beer & Gin Festival. More than 20 real ales and ciders. More than 25 gins. Quiz night and Rock & Roll bingo on Thursday. Gin tasting session on Saturday. Food at all sessions.

Weston Colville Reading Room. 29 March from 6:30pm. Portable Pint Pop-Up Pub event. Cask ales, Wylde Sky beer, Cambridgeshire cider, wine, prosecco & soft drinks plus pub games. Locally made scotch eggs from The Kitsch Hen.

BrewBoard Brewery Tap, Harston. 29 March from 5pm. Tap Takeover by Californian brewers, Firestone Walker. Honest Burgers van. DJs and live music.

White Lion, Sawston. 29 March from 7.30pm. Meet the Brewer Night with Grain Brewery. 316, Best Bitter and Slate on handpumps. 5% craft keg beer. 9.3% Empire Slate.

Petersfield, Sturton Street. 3–7 April. American Tap Takeover. American produced and American style beers. Grand National sweep on Saturday. Watch the Boat Race on Sunday.

Blue Moon, Norfolk Street. 4 April. Meet the Brewer evening with Duration Brewery. Chihuahua Mexican street food van outside.

Maypole, Portugal Place. 4 April. Tap Takeover by Tempest Brewing from the Scottish borders. Scotland inspired food too.

13 April. Strolling Social. See above.

Red Lion, Histon Easter Beer Festival. 19–21 April. 25 real ales and ciders.

27 April. Minibus Tour. See above.

East Anglian Beer & Cider Festival. 1–4 May. Organised by West Suffolk branch of CAMRA in the Apex and Charter Square, Arc Shopping Centre, Bury St Edmunds. 150 real ales. 30 ciders. Festival food. Sound stage with full entertainment programme.

Six Bells, Fulbourn 2–6 May. 8th Annual Beer Festival. Over 20 beers and ciders. Live music and family fun all the bank holiday weekend.

Bottisham Community S&SC. 3–6 May. Beer Festival at our Club of the Year. Lots of cask ales, real ciders & perries. Race Night on Saturday, karaoke on Sunday and Family Fun Day on Monday.

White Lion, Sawston. 3–6 May. Beer Festival.

Sun Inn, Waterbeach. 3–6 May. 11th Beer & Music Festival. Lots of cask ales and real ciders. Barbecue/braai on Sunday afternoon. Live music Saturday evening (The Machines) and Sunday afternoon (Split Whiskers and Friends).

Green Man, Grantchester. 3–6 May. Beltane Brew Ballyhoo! Beer & Music Festival. Over 80 real ales and other beers, real ciders & perries and lagers. Food at all sessions. Bands & DJs all weekend.

White Horse Inn, Swavesey. 3–6 May. Mayfest 2019. 28 cask ales and 6 real ciders. Live music. Tug of War and Barrel Rolling competitions.

Little Rose, Haslingfield. 3–6 May. Gin & Beer Festival. 16 beers, 25 gins, 3 ciders. Food. Live music. Pets corner.

Flying Pig, Hills Road. 4 May. Pigfest 2019. Live music all day raising money for charity and for Strawberry Fair.

Looking ahead…

Cambridge Beer Festival. 20–25 May. Jesus Green. New and experienced volunteers welcome.

Pub news & beer scoring

We’re always keen to receive news about our pubs, breweries and cider makers. If you have some, please email us. Members’ beer scores also help to keep us informed and influence our Good Beer Guide entry selection. It’s easy to do via WhatPub, either from your phone while you are in the pub or from home afterwards. Please also use WhatPub to give us feedback on the pubs you visit, especially if you discover inaccuracies in the pub’s entry.

2019 Gala Night Awards

Every year we give awards to pubs and individuals in our area.

  • Cambridge & District CAMRA Pub of the Year: The Chestnut Tree, West Wratting.
  • Young Members’ Pub of the Year: Calverley’s Brewery Tap, Hooper Street, Cambridge.
  • Cider Pub of the Year: The Plough, Shepreth.
  • Club of the Year: Bottisham Community Sports & Social Club.
  • Dog-Friendly Pub of the Year: The Mill, Mill Lane, Cambridge.
  • LocAle Pub (Rural): The Green Man, Thriplow.
  • LocAle Pub (City): The Haymakers, Chesterton High Street, Cambridge.
  • Community Pub (Rural): The Chestnut Tree, West Wratting.
  • Community Pub (City): The Dobbler’s Inn, Sturton Street, Cambridge.
  • New or Most Improved Pub (Rural): The Black Horse, Dry Drayton.
  • New or Most Improved Pub (City): The Old Ticket Office, Station Square, Cambridge.
  • Dark Ale Pub: Live & Let Live, Mawson Road, Cambridge.
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Horace White (Six Bells, Fulbourn)
  • Real Ale Champion: Ron Buchet (Cambridge CAMRA Octoberfest organizer and Beer Festival deputy organizer).

Breweries and cider makers

We also gave out awards to some of our local producers.

Calverley’s Porter won multiple awards:

  • Gold in East Anglian porters.
  • Gold in Champion Winter Beer of Britain porters.
  • Silver in Champion Winter Beer of Britain overall.

Crafty Beers won Beer of the Festival at the 45th Cambridge Beer Festival for Sauvignon Blonde.

Milton won Silver in the East Anglian stouts category for Nero and Bronze in the East Anglian best bitter category for Pegasus.

Simon’s Cider won Cider of the Festival for COX!!! and Perry of the Festival for Gibson’s Perry at the 45th Cambridge Beer Festival.