A village beer festival in County Durham which has earned regional acclaim returns this week hoping to build on last year’s success.

Organisers of the Coxhoe Village Hall Beer Festival have compiled a wide selection of ales, perries and ciders from as far afield as the south west of England, and Fife and Argyll, in Scotland.

The majority of the 35 hand pulls on the menu for the Coxhoe Village Hall Beer Festival are, however, produced by North East breweries, with more than a dozen served in traditional fashion, “from the wood”.

That helped earn the event The Society for the Preservation of Beer from the Wood’s North East Festival of the Year title, for 2023.

This year’s festival runs from Thursday to Saturday, March 21 to 23, with the first pint to be pulled at 12-noon on the opening day, but from 11am on the following two days.

Drinking up deadline after last orders will be at 10.30pm on all three days.

The Northern Echo: Ready to flow, the hand pulls lined up for the start of the Coxhoe Village Hall Beer Festival. on

The festival is run by trustees of the 90-year-old hall, on Front Street East, in Coxhoe.

Stuart Dunn, who chairs the trustees, said it is only with the help and expertise of Nick Young, from the Durham branch of the Campaign for Real Ale, The Beer Gadgies bar hire, one of many local sponsors, and the team of local volunteers, that the event is made possible, with such, “amazing success”.

“It doesn’t seem like a year since our first ‘award winning’ 2023 beer festival,” said Mr Dunn.

“When our trustees were asked if we’d like to try hosting a beer festival we thought, why not?

“We were concerned, however, at hosting it over four days and we were amazed at how many people came and that we had to scramble around to get extra beer in.

“That won’t happen this year,” he pledged.

The Northern Echo: POster proclaiming the forthcoming Coxhoe Village Hall Beer Festival

He said following the success of the 2023 festival he hopes it proves as popular and runs as well.

Mr Dunn thanked all those who will be attending for supporting the event, enabling the trustees to keep the 1930s-built venue running and helping it to stay on top of the necessary repairs and maintenance to make it sustainable for the future.

He also thanked the long list of local sponsors for enabling the event it to again take place.

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There is a £3 entry charge, which includes a commemorative festival glass for visitors to keep.

Beer tokens, costing £1.75 per half-pint, are available at the entry point.

Apart from the standard bar, soft drinks and hot food will also be available.