Keswick Beer Festival (KBF) also known as “The Party On The Pitch” is an annual charitable event held at Keswick Rugby Club. It was first held in 1997 and will be celebrating its 25th year in 2023. Over the years it has grown into a popular event , attracting in the region of six thousand people.
Volunteers & Charity
KBF is organised by the Keswick Beer Festival Committee with support from Keswick Rugby Club and Keswick Lions. The event is run by around 250 volunteers and has previously raised in the region of £60,000. The money raised is distributed amongst local charities and local community groups.
Keswick Beer Festival 2023
The Keswick Beer Festival is held over two days in early June, with tickets going on sale in the previous December. In 2023 the event is on the 2nd and 3rd of June (Friday & Saturday) and will be its 25th year.
In previous years the event has been held on:
- 2022 3rd & 4th June
- 2021 Cancelled due to Covid
- 2020 Cancelled due to Covid
- 2019 7th & 8th June
- 2018 1st & 2nd June
Entry to the beer festival is by ticketed wrist band only. There are no sales on the door. In 2022 the daily ticket price was £22 (either Friday or Saturday) and weekend ticket for both days was £40.
The ticket price includes a Festival Programme and Commemorative Half-pint Glass. Entertainment is also included in the ticket price in the form of three live acts on the Friday and Saturday nights.
In previous years under 18’s are only allowed at the event until 6.00 pm and must be accompanied by an adult. No dogs are allowed at the event. No drinks can be taken to the event.
The beer festival is open from 11.00am until 11.00 pm on both Friday and Saturday. Last orders are called at 10.50pm, with no sales after 11.00pm. The event must be vacated by 11.20pm.
Beer Token Price
Beer (and food) is bought at the bar with Tokens purchased at the entrance. A single token enables you to buy half a pint of beer and has previously cost £1.50. Tokens can be bought with either cash or card.
What Drinks Are Available At The Festival?
The Keswick Beer Festival has in the region of 200 – 250 real ales. The organisers try to ensure that two thirds of the beers are sourced locally within Cumbria, with the remaining third from the rest of the country.
Non-beer drinkers are also catered for with around thirty ciders and perrys. Bottled beers and lagers are also available along with a selection of wines and soft drinks.
Popular with local businesses and also individuals is the idea of sponsoring a barrel of beer. Sponsorship costs in the region of £115. Sponsors receive two tickets for both Friday and Saturday, two commemorative glass tankards, two karabiners (for securing your beer glass) and entry to the Thursday night preview (7.30 – 8.30pm) where beers can be sampled. The sponsorship package also includes links on the beer festival website, advertisements at the festival and an entry in the festival programme booklet.
Over the years visitors to the beer festival has chosen a theme to dress up in. Now this has been more formally recognised with a competition for the best individual and group fancy dress costumes. In 2022 the winner of the individual fancy dress competition received £25 and the best group entry received £75.
The party really kicks off on the Friday and Saturday nights with live music. There are usually three (different) live acts on the Friday and Saturday. In 2022 the entertainment line-up included The Moobs, the Understudies, The Kasios, Erin Collins, The Herdeez and J Lewis.
Hot and cold food is available at the festival throughout the two days. Food on offer has previously included Chilli con Carne, Gluten Free Vegetable Curry and Cumberand Sausage in a roll. Individual servings typically cost three beer tokens.
The Keswick Beer Festival is held on Keswick rugby pitch, hence the aka name “Party On The Pitch”. The festival site doesn’t have any parking. The address is:
Keswick Rugby Club, Davidson Park, Crow Park Road, Keswick CA12 5EG