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It's ale good - largest Norwich City of Ale festival gets under way

PUBLISHED: 22:12 24 May 2018 | UPDATED: 12:11 25 May 2018

The City of Ale is underway until June 3. Picture: Simon Finlay Photography

The City of Ale is underway until June 3. Picture: Simon Finlay Photography

Simon Finlay

Norwich was once described as having a pub for every day of the year and now a festival is making its return to celebrate our Fine City's ale heritage.

The biggest beer week in the country, with more than 40 city pubs coming together, the City of Ale will see a host of events, talks and ale trails take place in pubs across Norwich until June 3.

Co-chairman Dawn Leeder said: “We have got fantastic brewers and pubs. The maltsters and farmers grow the best malting barley in the world in north Norfolk and the historic compactness of the city streets mean that the city is walkable.

Norwich City of Ale on Thursday, May 24. PHOTO: Simon Finlay Photography.Norwich City of Ale on Thursday, May 24. PHOTO: Simon Finlay Photography.

“It is a beautiful city, there is so much to discover in addition to the pubs - we are surrounded by heritage.”

This year’s festival offers revellers the chance to collect seven heritage badges after each trail that have been designed by Caz Jones depicting buildings around Norwich like The Forum, City Hall and Norwich Castle.

Norwich City of Ale on Thursday, May 24. PHOTO: Simon Finlay Photography.Norwich City of Ale on Thursday, May 24. PHOTO: Simon Finlay Photography.

Ms Leeder said: “The idea is that you collect the city as you go around. They are absolutely brilliant and beautifully designed in the style of old railway posters.

“They aren’t dated so if anyone can’t collect the full set this year they can try again the next.”

Norwich City of Ale on Thursday, May 24. PHOTO: Simon Finlay Photography.Norwich City of Ale on Thursday, May 24. PHOTO: Simon Finlay Photography.

City of Ale was the first beer week in the country and has since been replicated in other cities such as Manchester, York and Bristol but Norwich remains the largest with 48 pubs.

Ms Leeder added: “Norwich is a city of firsts. From the first public library, first postcode, first pedestrianised streets and the first City of Ale.

Co-chair Dawn Leeder. MP Clive Lewish and co-chair Philip Cutter  Picture: Simon Finlay Photography.Co-chair Dawn Leeder. MP Clive Lewish and co-chair Philip Cutter Picture: Simon Finlay Photography.

“They often say that the sincerest form of flattery is replication.”

Although many pub trails are on offer it is the first time river trails are featured, with heritage tours down the River Wensum stopping off at five pubs along 
the way.

The festival also welcomes three award winning authors Adrian Tiernet-Jones, Pete Brown and Roger Protz who will be at events throughout the week.

For full details of all the pubs taking part and events go to cityofale.org.uk



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