Beer, staff and drinkers at Chesterfield Beer Festival 2016.

Who can you spot in these pictures of Chesterfield beer festivals from years gone by?

Fifty years ago, on March 16, 1971, four people, united in their opposition to the growing mass production of beer and the homogenisation of the British brewing industry, gathered in a bar in Kerry, Ireland – and the Campaign for Real Ale began.

Tuesday, 16th March 2021, 12:00 am

Interest in CAMRA spread rapidly, and within two years, more than 5,000 people had joined up, while by 1991, membership reached 30,000.

It is now the largest single-issue consumer group in the UK, with more than 170,000 members across more than 200 branches, including one in Chesterfield.

It works to: secure the long-term future of real ale, real cider and real perry by increasing their quality, availability and popularity; promote and protect pubs and clubs as social centres as part of the UK's cultural heritage; increase recognition of the benefits of responsible, moderate social drinking; play a leading role in the provision of information, education and training to all those with an interest in beer, cider and perry of any type; and ensure, where possible, that producers and retailers of beer, cider and perry act in the best interests of the customer..

Although the Chesterfield branch meetings are currently on hold, with pubs shut and Britain in lockdown, it is usually an active branch and has organised the Chesterfield Beer Festival down the years.

Darren Siseman, branch chairman, said: “It’s obviously been very limiting and frustrating for punters and publicans alike in the current shutdown.”

To celebrate the golden anniversary, see who you can spot in these pictures of past Chesterfield Beer Festivals…

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