Best brews at Norwich beer festival announced

One of the brews judged joint best by the public at the 35th Norwich beer festival was originally produced to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Friends of Norwich in Bloom.

Beeston Brewery's Bloomers Ale, brewed in west Norfolk, and Mauldons Blackberry Porter, brewed in Sudbury, Suffolk, were judged joint overall winners at the event.

Beer festival organiser Martin Ward said it was too early to compare it to previous events, but added: 'We had lots of positive feedback from customers about the range of beers on offer and how friendly we all were.

'It's too early to say the exact figures but my gut feeling is that the number of people who attended was a little under last year's total of about 19,000. People are tightening their belts.'

The festival, which ran from last Monday until Saturday was organised by the Norwich and Norfolk branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra), and held at St Andrew's and Blackfriars' Halls.

More than 200 cask-conditioned real ales from Britain's independent brewers were on sale, along with draught and bottled beers from continental Europe, traditional ciders and perries from East Anglia, the West Country and elsewhere.

The festival supported the Norwich-based Norfolk Lowland Search and Rescue (NORLSAR), volunteers trained in search and rescue techniques who help the police look for missing people, but the amount raised has not been announced.

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