Suffolk village announces beer festival

ONE community is the toast of Suffolk's villages today - after landing its own beer festival.Trimley St Martin is hoping the modest beginnings will help it put a marker on the real ale map and establish an annual event.

ONE community is the toast of Suffolk's villages today - after landing its own beer festival.

Trimley St Martin is hoping the modest beginnings will help it put a marker on the real ale map and establish an annual event.

Already 36 ales and four special ciders have been lined up for the festival this summer.

It could also prove a tourism boost for the area with beer fans expected from far and wide, and many are expected to stay over in bed and breakfast in Felixstowe, or camp on the field at the venue.

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Phil Upton, chairman of Trimley Sports and Social Club, said: “Preparations have been going really well, and we have had some excellent advice and support.

“We have still got some work to do, especially putting together the racking for the barrels, and deciding how to keep the beer cool enough. It has to be between 11 and 15 degrees centigrade.

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“We are probably going to use ice jackets around the barrels because it is so important to have the right temperature at all times.

“Everyone at the club is really looking forward to it - and if we can break even or thereabouts we will be looking to make it an annual event.”

The festival, which will take place at the club in High Road on June 1, 2 and 3, was Mr Upton's idea and he sought advice from CAMRA and organisers of the Ipswich Beer Festival.

There are plans to have a range of strength of beers, from 3.5per cent to 8.5pc, with a variety of flavours.

“Most of them will be session beers with four porters and a few strong ales,” Mr Upton said.

Many of the beers will come from the Iceni Brewery near Thetford, plus other small breweries from the region.

The event will also feature live music from the Celebrated Onion band, plus another act currently being signed up.

In readiness for the event, the club, which has nearly 600 members, is undergoing extensive refurbishment. The main hall is receiving a makeover and there will be new toilets and disabled provision. Around £15,000 is also being spent on a projector and big screens for the World Cup.

Give us your views on plans for a Trimley Beer Festival - write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail


Beer speak - the guide

session beer - a pleasant, easily drunk beer that's not too strong so you can drink a lot in a session.

porter - the name porter for stronger beers originated because it was thought such a nourishing drink would be just the thing for market porters and other hard working labourers.

barrel - a container able to hold 36 gallons, 288 pints.

spile - the smallwooden peg in the top of a barrel used to control the outgoing flow of carbon dioxide.

ullage - the beer a landlord loses - primarily through drawing off old beer before serving.


Best Beers: Mine's a pint . . .

Those on sale at the festival will include:

Nethergate Old Growler . . . Described by experts as having “a nose of strong chocolate, hops and dough, with smoky malt and an elusive sour cheese hint. Palate is initially sweetish, with rich dark chocolate, but not as sweet as many porters.”

Iceni Norfolk Gold . . . Pours with a giant white head - described as having a “slightly honey and leather tone”, and “a lovely beer either way with a faint orange perfume, a twist of lemon in the taste, and a mild bitterness in the finish.”

Everard's Tiger . . . Fans claim say it s a “dry-hopped beer with the characteristic rich hoppy aroma, slightly stronger and more flavoursome” with “woody bitterness on the palate with a hint of caramel, some lighter fruit notes and a lingering bitter finish”.

Hobgoblin . . . A strong ale which is a rich, dark reddish brown colour, with a bubbly but rapidly vanishing head and “an aroma is of dark chocolate and dry, roast malt, a little like Horlicks”.


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