Hundreds are expected to descend on one of the county’s biggest beer festivals – amid claims the real ale industry in the region is booming.
Large crowds gathered for the start of Shrewsbury Camra beer, cider and perry festival yesterday.
More were attending the Morris Hall in Bellstone today and tomorrow to sample some of the 80 real ales on offer across 54 hand pulls.
Norrie Porter, public affairs officer for the group, said the real ale industry is flourishing.
He said: “We have got at least one beer from each of the breweries in west Shropshire and we have got three from the Six Bells Brewery in Bishop’s Castle as they are the main sponsor of the event.
“There are normally 1,400 to 1,500 entries through the doors which usually equates to about 1,200 people as some people come back all three days.
“The real ale industry is vibrant in Shropshire.
“We have got a growing number of breweries and the pubs that sell real ale are much less likely to be threatened with closure.
“It is still hard for the whole licensed trade but if you are a pub with a good real ale offer then you are much more likely to have a solid customer base and stay open.”
Mr Porter believes the beer festival will represent the biggest real ale pub in the West Midlands thanks to the number of pumps ready to pull the pints for beer enthusiasts.
He said: “There really is something for everyone. We have also got 10 real ales and three perrys as well as a range of country wines.
“We have got 54 hand pulls which makes us the biggest real ale pub probably in the West Midlands this weekend in terms of pumps.
“There are about 60 beers on offer that have not been seen in the county before.”
Drinkers are expected to flock to the Morris Hall in Bellstone from as far afield as Southampton, Warrington and Manchester for the festival.
The event will run from 11am to 11pm today and from 11am to 9pm on Saturday.
Entry costs £2.50 with Camra members getting in free today before 6pm and on Saturday.