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Historic real ale rail trail

A historic real ale trail taking place on the UK’s longest heritage railway will feature beers from twenty-three different South West breweries, spread across train ‘pop-up’ beer bars on a 20 mile route.

Brewing members of the South West Region of SIBA are coming together to create the ‘Real Ale Rail Trail’, with ‘pop-up’ beer bars along the West Somerset Railway, the longest heritage railway in the UK. The unique ale trail is expected to attract over 4,000 thirsty beer lovers across the three day event, taking place from the 9th to the 11th June.

“This is the first time any heritage railway has featured an event such as this anywhere in the UK. Attendees purchase a ticket which includes two free halves and they can sample the beers on offer at whichever end they board the train. We’ll have brewers from Devon ready to pour their beers from custom ‘pop-up’ beer bars at the Minehead stop, Wiltshire & Dorset brewers at the Stogumber stop and Somerset brewers at the Bishops Lydiard stop. Whichever way you decide to do it there is an amazing selection of fantastic independent craft brewed beer along the way!” Event Organiser and SIBA South West Secretary, Carl Beeson

The ale trail is being run in conjunction with West Somerset Railway and is set to have a real festival atmosphere, with live entertainment and street food stalls placed next to platforms along the route to line the stomachs of thirsty ale-trailers.

“We’ve got loads of amazing food lined up as well as amazing craft beer from the South West. At Bishops Lydeard on both Friday and Saturday evening there will be live entertainment, plus street food from Cullens Hook n Cook BBQ and ‘Bread bar’ on Friday evening, then Buckland Burgers & Bread bar on saturday evening. On top of that, throughout the day at Bishops Lydeard The Fruit & Flower Basket will be serving up bacon baps, homemade pasties, sausage rolls and pies. At Minehead station the Oggy Oggy Pasties will be in attendance throughout the weekend, plus food and light refreshments at Stogumber Station.” Carl added.

The event coincides with the West Somerset Railway Diesel Gala, which attracts Diesel engine fans from across the whole of the UK, so tickets are set to fly out.

Get your ticket online at WSR, by phone 01643-704996 or post West Somerset Railway, The Railway Station, Minehead, Somerset, TA24 5BG.

Full list of the breweries involved in the Real Ale Rail Trail:

  • Hanlons
  • Exe Valley
  • Crossed anchor
  • Summerskills
  • South Hams
  • Salcombe
  • Isca
  • Cotleigh
  • Exmoor
  • Quantock
  • Milk Street
  • Plain ales
  • Dawkins
  • Beat ales
  • Windy Brewery
  • Brewhouse & Kitchen
  • Gyle 59
  • Flying Monk
  • Hop Kettle
  • Dark Revolution
  • Castle Combe
  • Twisted Brewing
  • Three Daggers