November's events kick off with a branch social in Newport Pagnell on Wed 4th, touring some of the many fine beer and cider purveyors in the town centre. A full itinerary and public transport information will be published closer to the date.
The 21st Watford CAMRA Beer Festival runs from Thu 5th to Sat 7th of November at the West Herts Sports Club (WD18 7HP). Doors open at 4pm on the Thursday and 11am on Friday and Saturday, closing at 11pm each day. There will be over 80 beers, ciders and perries from breweries in Hertfordshire, London and all over the country, including beers from their local breweries, Paradigm and Pope's Yard. It's FREE entry to CAMRA members or £2.50 otherwise. For more information, check the festival's web page, or follow them on Facebook or Twitter. The venue is about 20 minutes on foot from Watford Junction rail station (map with directions) which has a good rail service to/from Milton Keynes.
Between Mon 9th and Sun 15th of November, there's an interesting beer festival up the rail line from MK at the Merchants Inn, Rugby (CV21 3AW). They are setting up a battle between old (pre-1987) and new (1987 onwards) real ale breweries that'll feature around 80 beers, plus a range of entertainment across the week. Further information and a beer list are available on the pub's website. With both Virgin and London Midland operating services to/from Rugby, there is a bewildering array of tickets to choose from, including cheap pre-booked and off-peak options. Get times and prices from the National Rail website and allow for a 20 minute walk up the hill then right towards the town centre.
Tom Smith Ales, currently brewing in Corby, just outside of our branch's LocAle area, will be holding their 2nd Nomadic Beer Festival at the Radhuni, Queen Street, Kettering from Fri 13th to Sun 15th of November. Around 20 ales will be available, including festival specials and beers from new breweries, plus quality Indian food. FREE entry too. It's a bit of a trek from MK, but the Stagecoach X4 bus offers a direct service via Northampton and Wellingborough, both of which offer good pub options for stops. Tom Smith Ales are planning to return to brewing in Kettering, so may become a LocAle brewery again soon.
Attention all new members! Our traditional welcome social one month after the Concrete Pint festival takes place at Wetherspoons, CMK (known as Old 'spoons to many) on Tue 17th of November. Hopefully you'll all have your membership packs, including the Wetherspoons discount vouchers, but we should have some spare if you don't. If you are an existing CAMRA member, you are most welcome to join us too! Further details later in the month.
MK Food Revolution are hosting their first Beer Club night at Bucks Star Brewery, Stonebridge, on Fri 20th of November, running from 7pm to 10pm. The evening will feature beers from Bucks Star, Concrete Cow, Hornes and Leighton Buzzard breweries, accompanied by nibbles and a chance to chat to some of the brewers. Tickets, available online, cost £12 (plus booking fee) and there are only 15 places available, so be quick if you want one. Further Beer Clubs are planned for the future.
We hear that the Rising Sun, Berkhampstead, is to hold another beer festival between Thu 26th and Sun 29th of November. Keep an eye on their Facebook page and Twitter feed for confirmation and further info.
Don't drop a clanger, go and eat one instead! The Little Buzzard Bakery will be providing Bedfordshire Clangers to help celebrate Bedfordshire Day at Leighton Buzzard Brewing Co on Sat 28th of November. The brewery will hold an open day between 10am and 6pm and will be launching two new beers; Bedfordshire Best and Xmash (a Christmas beer). Take Arriva bus 150 to Leighton Buzzard Hight Street or hop on the regular rail service. The brewery is around 15 minutes walk out of town.
What is nihamanchi? According to Wikipedia, nihamanchi is a beer brewed by indigenous peoples of South America. You probably don't want to know more than that!
Have we missed something? Tell us about your real ale or cider/perry event via email to
or Tweet us @mkcamra and we'll do our best to pass on the details.