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Posted: 29th August 2018

The 29th Faversham Hop Festival takes place this Saturday, September 1 and Sunday, September 2.

Britain’s oldest brewer Shepherd Neame, based in the market town, is once again the official partner for the free two-day event, which commemorates the golden days of hop picking in Kent.

The Shepherd Neame Brewery Stage in Court Street will feature a diverse range of performances by local musicians on both days, from rock and pop showband Loose Change to folk group Green Diesel and swing band Goosebumps. Its pubs in the town will also be joining in the celebrations, with many hosting live music throughout the weekend, including The Anchor, Railway Hotel, and The Market Inn.

Shepherd Neame’s friendly team will be serving the following beers and ciders throughout the weekend at the Brewery Bar, next to the Brewery Stage:

Hop Festival Ale (4.5% ABV)
Master Brew (3.7% ABV)
Spitfire Gold (4.1% ABV)
Late Red (4.5% ABV)
Whitstable Bay Blonde Lager (4.5% ABV)
Orchard View Apple Cider (4.5% ABV)

Shepherd Neame has teamed up with Plastic Free Faversham to try and reduce single-use plastic at this year’s event. All beer sold at the Brewery Bar will be served in re-usable plastic cups. An initial surcharge will be added to cover the cost of the cups, but it can then be kept and refilled throughout the weekend. 

Shepherd Neame will be hosting special Hop Festival Brewery Tours at regular intervals throughout the weekend. During the 30 minute guided tour, visitors will be taken around the historic site to learn about the ancient art of brewing and have an opportunity to taste some of the local ingredients used in the beers. The tour will conclude in The Old Brewery Store where visitors can enjoy a free half pint from the bar. The tours are open to over 18s, with tickets priced £5. Early booking is highly recommended. Book here

Take some time out during the festival and head along to Shepherd Neame’s Old Brewery Store events venue, which is hosting a free exhibition on the history of hops and hop picking in and around Faversham from 10.30am on both days. Visitors can enjoy browsing hop picking memorabilia and watching archive films of hopping. Some of the brewery’s vintage vehicles will be on show, and the Old Brewery Store bar will be open. On Sunday, special guests Lincoln and Leeroy will be making an appearance from 11.30am to 3.30pm. The pair of Shire horses, similar in size to those which used to make beer deliveries for the brewery, will be available throughout the day for visitors to meet and take photographs.

Two of the brewery’s historic vehicles will feature in the morning parade through the town, which serves to open the event. It starts outside the railway station, leaving at 10am on Saturday, and 10.30am on Sunday, and ending at Market Place.
On Sunday, there will be a short Hop Blessing on the Brewery Stage at 10.45am, before a special service of celebration at 11am at St Mary of Charity Church. 

For more information or to book a Hop Festival Brewery Tour, call 01795 542016 or visit our website