This month an exciting new beer event is heading to County Durham to showcase and promote local beers and breweries from the area.

Event creator Luke Hillard describes the event as ‘The Great British Bake Off but for beer’ which will involve local brewers competing for their beer to be voted the best in County Durham. 

The Northern Echo:

Set to be hosted at Lumley Castle on Saturday, February 24, this beer competition aims to help local breweries become more successful and to encourage people to buy local beer. 

Durham Beer Off aims to welcome guests from all over the North East region, where guests can choose from over 20 beers from 11 County Durham breweries.

Breweries heading to the event include Consett Ale Works, Tooth Claw Brew, Caps Off Brewery, McColl's Brewery, Durham Brewery, Hopper House Brew Farm, Steam Machine Brewing Company, Hill Island Brewery, Three Brothers Brewing Company, George Samuel Brewery and North Pier Brew Co. 

The Northern Echo:

Even those who aren’t fans of beer are welcome to come along as there will also be cider, wine and non-alcoholic drinks available.

The event will host beer talks from the brewers, a drink a yard of ale the quickest competition which is set to raise money for charity, as well as a hog roast and live music from Newcastle singer songwriter Annabel Pattinson Hurrell.

Durham Beer Off with also have an element of friendly competition as visitors will get the chance to rank their favourite beers and give feedback to the brewers.

There will also be beer judges who will give their professional expertise on the selection.

The highest ranked beer will be crowned winner of the County Durham beer off and will win a prize.

This endeavour hopes to support local beer businesses and breweries, especially those who have been hit by the cost-of-living crisis.

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To be showcased at the event it was a requirement for Luke that brewers must be independent and based in County Durham as he believes having a favourite beer in the area is important to cement a regional identity. 

Luke said: “Tickets are selling well, it's my first event and it takes time to kick things off but I really want people to enjoy it.”

The Northern Echo:

After witnessing independent pubs being bought by big chains in the area as well as moving from Cornwall to the County Durham, Luke loves the locally brewed beer in the region which has inspired the idea for the event.

He also hopes to expand his beer off event to the whole region including Northumberland celebrating North East beer region by region to finally create a North East beer off.

The event will take place at Lumley Castle on Saturday, February 24 from 2pm until 10pm. Tickets cost £15 for entry, including 2 beers in the price. Students can receive a 20% discount. 

Visit the Durham Beer Off Facebook here for enquiries, or to purchase tickets visit their Eventbrite here