So the History Festival is now over, and what a great week it was. The sun shone and Gloucester’s streets thronged with costume-clad people in parades and history enthusiasts. Once again many of Gloucester’s most interesting and historic venues threw open their doors to the public for a free look as part of the Heritage Open Days. It made me proud of my city and I hope it had the same effect on other right-thinking residents.
Last weekend also saw the first Gloucester Heritage Pubs Beer Festival, which I coordinated. This set out to showcase some of Gloucester’s most historic pubs, and a good number of those drawn to Gloucester for the History Festival and Heritage Open Days seemed to take the opportunity to sample some of the wide range of beers and ciders on offer across the 16 pubs participating, plus the Gloucester Brewery who, as a late addition to the festival, took over Coots Cafe Bar for the weekend.
The beautiful warm, sunny weather helped to build a thirst and Saturday afternoon was particularly busy. The pubs were also enlivened by the Assize of Ale that did the rounds during the afternoon and evening to check that the beer was all up to standard. I suspect that not everyone managed to visit all 16 pubs during the weekend, but a fair few staunch drinkers gave it a go to compete in the quiz that ran alongside the beer festival; this required you to answer a question about each pub to be in with a chance of winning copious amounts of beer generously donated by Gloucester Brewery and Wye Valley Brewery. The lucky winner will be announced by the end of September.
I don’t know whether I will be coordinating another beer festival next year or not. I am seeking views of those who attended and the landlords involved, as well as reflecting on the experience from my perspective. I would welcome any constructive comments if you were there to help me in my decision.
But enough about the beer festival: here are some photos of other things that were going on during the week.