York Beer Festival

Campaign for Real Ale

Campaign for Real Ale

FAQ 2023

  • Are advance tickets available?

    Yes and you get Fast Track entry for the session you've booked!

    This is a new site so our capacity is much smaller than the racecourse. Therefore we STRONGLY ADVISE you Buy your advance tickets here to avoid disappointment if they sell out

    Keep an eye on our social media for updates.

  • CAMRA member discounts?

    There is a CAMRA member discount of £2 per session on advance bookings only. Please link to your membership number when you Buy your advance tickets here and you MUST show your membership card on entry.

  • Can I bring children?

    Families are welcome for the afternoon sessions . Under 18s with a responsible adult can use the gardens/churchyard but note that they cannot enter the Church or Hall. .

    We are unable to allow under 18’s into the church or church hall due to restricted fire regulation numbers. We do have an outdoor marquee and outdoor seating. Please note that at all times children will be the responsibility of their parents or carers.

    Unlike the Knavesmire this is an unfenced and open site with access to the main road and the footpath along the side of the church. So please ensure your children are effectively supervised and well behaved at all times.

  • Can I bring my own beer or cider?

    No - soft drinks only in plastic bottles are allowed.

  • Can I stay on between sessions?

    In short – NO. The afternoon and evening sessions are separate bookings similar to many beer festivals. There will be specific wristbands to allow entry for each session.

    If you have tickets for the whole same day why not visit and enjoy one of the many local pubs in the vicinity during the break?

  • Can I volunteer to work at the festival?

    Yes you can. We need volunteers to work selflessly on all aspects of the festival from setup to takedown as well as when we are open.

    We are recruiting volunteers (CAMRA members) to work in all areas of the festival. When you work a full session either behind the bar or in another capacity we will give you a drink and food allowance as a thank you. Where you volunteer for at least two sessions we will provide a t-shirt.

    You can find out more in our Volunteers 2023 section. To apply please fill in the online 2023 staffing form on that page.

  • Covid precautions

    The virus remains in circulation and can be asymptomatic. Although the majority of people are now vaccinated, we ask you to be vigilant.

    Should you have any flu-like symptoms at all – please think of others and stay away on this occasion.

  • Do I have to buy a glass?

    You have a choice of buying a festival souvenir half pint goblet for £3.00 (while stocks last) or using a free polycarbonate pint or half pint "glass".

    There are no glass refunds.

  • Do you offer corporate packages?

    No - As this is our first festival on this site there are no corporate deals. However you are welcome to buy as many advance tickets as you wish.

  • Do you sell drinks in less than a pint?

    Yes - our glasses are marked for thirds and half pint measures as well.

  • How do I pay for drinks?

    CARD and CONTACTLESS are our default payment methods and also for caterers. There are no beer tokens.

  • How much is a pint?

    Previous visitors will know that we have a policy of keeping prices as reasonable as possible. Beers will be priced individually according to their strength (ABV).

  • I don't drink beer - what else is served?

    If real ale isn’t your thing then there’s some great craft beers and continental lagers on offer plus wines, meads and prosecco. Water and soft drinks wil be available.

  • Is smoking allowed?

    No smoking or vaping is allowed inside the church or hall. Please respect other guests in your vicinity.

  • Is there a programme?

    Yes - it's included with your admission price and comes with full tasting notes and much more! They will be available when you collect your glass and show your session wristband.

  • Is there parking available?

    There is plenty of cycle parking on site. There is no onsite parking and limited on-street parking as we are just outside the city walls. We do not recommend driving to the festival unless you are a non-drinker. For those coming by train there are scheduled bus services between the station and the festival site.

  • What about dogs?

    Dogs are welcomed outside as long as they are kept under control and on a lead AT ALL TIMES.

  • What are the opening hours?

    With a new (and smaller) site, in common with many beer festivals, we have moved to two sessions each day. These are 12:00 – 16:30 and 18:00 – 23:00.

    On Wednesday 13 September afternoon entry is only for those with trade tickets.

    Wednesday evening and Thursday through Saturday sessions are open to the public and CAMRA members.

  • What if it rains?

    We will have an outdoor marquee and along with the church and church hall we expect to accommodate everyone in the dry.

  • Where is the festival?

    At St Lawrence church, Lawrence St, York YO10 3WP – this is south of Walmgate Bar and close to the Rook and Gaskill and Waggon and Horses pubs. what3words

    It’s about a 20 minute walk from the station on footpaths (1 mile) or 30 minute walk along the walls (1.4 miles which adds to the sense of occasion).

    The festival site is well served by buses #10 Stamford Bridge (Stop RL), #67 University (Stop RJ), #X46/47 Beverley/Hull (stop RC) and #747 Pocklington/Hull (Stop RC). York bus timetables

  • Where to stay for the festival.

    Make the most of it by staying for more than one day. There is a wide range of hotels and guest houses. You can explore and book using Visit York's website at https://www.visityork.org/business-directory/category/stay

  • Why do I have to pay to get in?

    The cost of putting on a festival of this size is very significant. Admission charges go towards covering just some of the outlay on things such as site hire, marquee hire, toliets etc, fencing, electrics, bar equipment, scaffolding etc

  • Why have you moved from the Knavesmire?

    York Racecourse added in a meeting during September which means that date was no longer available. Although we looked at other potential dates, the time required for Festival setup etc and that for the races means there was no longer a viable option to hold our beer festival on the Knavesmire.

  • Will all the beers be available at all times?

    We will endeavour to have the greatest range of beers throughout the festival and reserve the right to keep some back from sales if not ready for drinking. The range will diminish as beers sell out.

  • Will I have to queue to get in?

    We strongly advise you buy advance tickets for the sessions you wish to attend. Fast track entry is guaranteed for all advance purchase tickets and apart from just before opening we do not anticipate a queue.

    Should you turn up on the day without a ticket we cannot guarantee entry to the festival unless there are unsold advance tickets. See our social media page for updates.

  • Will you have food at the festival?

    Yes - there will be a range of quality street food including vegetarian and vegan options. Details of our traders will be in the "Food " section of this website when confirmed.