April looks like a busy month for beer festivals in London. It will take a dedicated ale aficionado to attend all of the events listed here — feel free to take that as a challenge. As usual, let us know in the comments if we’ve missed anything notable.
1-4 April: Wandsworth Common Beer Festival
Always a reliable fixture, the Wandsworth Common Beer Festival returns to the Grade II listed Le Gothique building from Wednesday evening until Saturday (not Sunday, as some publicity has stated). Online pre-booking is recommended — for Thursday, Friday and Saturday payment of £4 will be taken on the door, whereas entry to Wednesday’s preview night costs £25 in advance (including free cask beer all night).
2-6 April: Wild Card Brewery Spring Beer Festival
From Thursday evening until Easter Monday, the bar at Walthamstow’s Wild Card Brewery will be offering a “vast range of craft beers from London’s best breweries”, as well as live music, DJs and doubtless a number of other diversions. Check the brewery’s website for the festival’s opening times.
16-20 April: The New Rose Real Ale Festival
The New Rose pub on Essex Road promises to serve up more than 20 real ales from around the country over five days from Thursday 16 April. The CAMRA-favoured pub will be accompanying the beer with Indie Bingo, DJs, Sunday roasts, pizza and televised FA Cup matches. Solid pub stuff, right there.
17-18 April: Hook Beer Festival 2015
A suburban scout hut in Surbiton plays host to the return of the annual Hook Beer Festival, taking place in three four-hour sessions over 17 and 18 April. Unsurprisingly for a CAMRA-supported festival, the published beer list is dominated by British real ales, although a dozen ciders are also listed. Entry to each session will cost £5 — see the festival’s website for session times and other details.
22-24 April: Waltham Forest Sports Social Club Real Ale Festival
The theme for the 14th beer festival at the Waltham Forest Sports Social Club is ‘An East Anglian Odyssey’, so unsurprisingly the provisional beer list (PDF) indicates that all of the festival’s 20 real ales originate from breweries in that region. Admission on the Friday evening costs £2 (unless you are a CAMRA or club member); see the festival poster (PDF) for more details.
23-25 April: Bexley Beer Festival
Another suburban CAMRA-supported beer festival, this time in Bexley, runs for three days from Thursday 23 April. The festival’s poster (PDF) promises more than 75 beers and ciders, served in a “large marquee, not squashed into small hall like 2013”. Entry to a six-hour session (or all of Saturday, while stocks last) costs a trifling £2.50, with further discounts for CAMRA members.
24-26 April: Fullerians RFC Beer Festival
The annual springtime festival at Watford’s Fullerians Rugby Football Club runs over the final weekend in April, offering more than 20 beers, 10 ciders, tasty food (including porky fare from the semi-legendary Crusty Pie Company), and music from four live bands.
30 April-2 May: Kidbrooke Beer and Cider Festival
Finally, London’s last beer festival in an ale-soaked April kicks off on the last day of the month and runs for three days. The South East London chapter of CAMRA joins forces with Charlton Park Rugby Club to present the Kidbrooke Beer and Cider Festival, featuring more than 50 real ales and 25 ciders and perries. Entrance costs a mere £2 (or £1 for CAMRA members).