Festival offers a taste of fine Surrey and Sussex beers

The Richard Onslow in Cranleigh is dedicating a whole weekend to sharing its love of local beers.

Brewers from across the county and a little further afield in West Sussex will bring some of their finest brews to the pub when the festival kicks off at 4pm on Friday, April 11.

Pub deputy manager Stewart Cumming, who is passionate about beer, has lined up a selection of more than a dozen beers, from small and award-winning local independent brewers, to try at the festival.

“It’s our first beer festival here at the pub and it’s all about great local beer,” said Stewart.

“I know, from my own research in watering holes across the county, that there are some amazing beers out there and that it’s very easy to get your hands on them – you just have to know where to look. Great local brewers are dotted all over Surrey and Sussex and we have some cracking beers, ales and also ciders, made right on our doorstep.

“So I’ve made it my mission to get them into the pub, either as regular guest ales or by having special events like this one, where we want to see as many people as possible sipping and supping new beers they might not have tried before and ringing the changes from their usual pint.”

Plenty of great local beers will be on tap over the weekend and there will also be the chance to meet some of the brewers.

Stewart is setting up a stillage in the pub’s side room to serve beers from at least six local brewers including The Surrey Hills Brewery just down the road, Rudgwick’s Firebird Brewing Company and The Little Beer Corporation, a community-owned nano-brewery in Guildford, which brews and sells premium craft bottled beer.

Ales from the Dorking Brewery and Horsham’s Hepworth and King’s Brewhouse will also be served.

Visitors can try as many beers as they like on the day or go one better and pre-order their ‘beer money’ – special tokens they can spend on a round or two of drinks – by going to www.therichardonslow.co.uk.

There will also be tasty bar snacks, including home-made pork scratchings, as well as the pub’s all-day menu of good seasonal food to enjoy.

“It’s going to be a weekend of discovery with some brilliant beers for everyone to try – whether they’re ale aficionados or not,” said Stewart.

“There’s never been a better time to get into beer; it’s a great, British product and we’re lucky enough to have a strong brewing heritage locally that really needs celebrating, and supporting.

“I, for one, will be doing just that and I hope as many people as possible will be raising a glass with me.”

The Richard Onslow beer festival takes place from 4pm on Friday, April 11, and runs all weekend, or until the beer runs out.

The pub is at 113-117 High Street.

For more information call 01483 274922 or visit www.therichardonslow.co.uk.