Festival to pull in crowd

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ORGANISERS of an annual festival hope its line-up of live bands and real ale will prove a crowd pleaser.

The Midsummer Beer Festival promises four days of entertainment next week for regulars and newcomers to the award-winning West Riding pub in Dewsbury.

Manager Rosalind Arden said: “There’s been a midsummer beer festival here every year since the pub opened in 1994.

“All the locals know about it. We get real ale enthusiasts coming to try the beers and we get all the ale trail drinkers on the train too.

“It’s become a bit of an institution.”

The West Riding was named 2010 pub of the year by the Heavy Woollen branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) and prides itself on its range of ales.

It festival selection of 30 real ales includes Alpha Ale and Pigeon Bridge Porter, the first beers to be brewed by its sister pub the Sportman in Huddersfield.

Ms Arden said: “We’re looking for what you call spotters beers. People from Camra like to try new beers so we’re always on the lookout for ones they might like to try.

“Some brewers will brew some nice summery beers which we also try to focus on for this event.”

The festival, which starts on Thursday June 16, will also feature performances from five live bands on the pub’s Plaftorm 3 stage.

The line-up includes Dewsbury Music Centre Swing Band, Fat Stanley and Blackstone Edge.

Ms Arden said: “They’ve all been before and gone down well which is why we’ve invited them back.”

See The Guide for full band listings and opening times for the festival.