The pie and peas poser

SAVE OUR BACON: Rosalind Arden of the West Riding pub can't understand why food firms don't get involved in the beer festival. (d03051140)
SAVE OUR BACON: Rosalind Arden of the West Riding pub can't understand why food firms don't get involved in the beer festival. (d03051140)

FAVOURITE fare for real ale drinkers in Dewsbury could be under threat.

Organisers of the town’s second beer festival are pleading with local food firms to get involved.

An information website for the Dewsbury and Heavy Woollen Beer and Cider Festival is flagging up a potential crisis – that the ale drinker’s staples such as pie and peas are at risk – and is asking for people to provide food. But a serious situation lies beneath the light-hearted appeal.

So far, not one business has offered to run food stalls at the three-day festival later this month. And organisers CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale) are at a loss as to why. Only the intervention of kitchen staff from the West Riding pub looks set to save the day. James Wilson and Marise Purdy have offered to provide catering as an independent operation.

Rosalind Arden, one of the organisers, said: “We had trouble getting food suppliers on board at last year’s festival, despite the fact it’s a great opportunity. You have a stand in front of 2,500 people for three days at no charge.”

The beer festival organisers are looking for people to do food such as pie and peas, bacon butties and curry.

“The only people to come forward are two of our own kitchen staff who have offered to do the catering on an independent basis,” said Ms Arden, manager of the West Riding.

The West Riding’s kitchen manager Ms Purdy said: “I heard the organisers were struggling food-wise and, me being me, I piped up that I would do it.”

The festival is at Dewsbury Town Hall from Thursday May 19 to Saturday May 21, coinciding with the town’s first chilli festival. Doors open to CAMRA members at 4pm on the Thursday, 6pm to the public. Entry is £3 to £5, with CAMRA members free.

l Potential caterers should contact Sarah Barnes on 01924 450404.