Friday 15 June & Saturday 16 June 2018

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions

Question: When is this year’s Guildford Beer Festival?

Answer: The Tenth Annual Guildford Beer Festival is on Friday, 7th and Saturday, 8th June 2019.

Question: Where will it be?

Answer: Once again at Guildford Cricket Club at The Sports Ground in Woodbridge Road, Guildford GU1 4RP. The Beer Festival takes place in large marquees at the Railway End of the ground. There is plenty of seating outdoors and under cover.

Question: Is it easy to get to the venue?

Answer: Guildford Cricket Club in Woodbridge Road is very close to the town centre. It is a short walk from Guildford Railway Station (look for GBF directional signs so you take the shortest route) and from Guildford Bus Station. Most visitors come by public transport but there is also ample free parking in the ground.

If you arrive on foot or by car, enter via the Railway End gate in Woodbridge Road (close to the Woodbridge Café).  There is no access via the Pavilion End gate in Wharf Road.

Question: What’s the history of the Guildford Beer Festival?

Answer: The inaugural Guildford Beer Festival was held in August 2010. It was organised by and hosted at Guildford Cricket Club.  Each successive GBF has attracted more visitors and it is now a fixture of the Guildford summer calendar.

Question: Do you have a website?

Answer: We have an informative and well-designed website. Purchasing tickets and drinks tokens online in advance is straightforward. As the event approaches, the website is updated with details of the music programme, the beer list and other information.

Question: What are the opening hours?

Answer: There are three separate timed sessions – you buy a ticket to one or more. Session One is on Friday evening (6.00pm – 10.00pm), Session Two on Saturday afternoon (12.00pm – 4.00pm) and Session Three on Saturday evening (6.00pm – 10.00pm).

GBF Faqs

Question: How much are admission tickets?

Answer: Admission tickets are £10.00 for each of the three sessions. The price has not increased since 2014. Unlike some other beer festivals, there are no booking fees on top of the ticket price. CAMRA members pay the full price for their admission ticket but upon arrival they receive a discount in the form of tokens entitling them to a free pint (you need to show your current CAMRA membership card).

Question: Where can I buy tickets?

Answer: Tickets are available:

As stated above, CAMRA members pay the full price when purchasing their admission tickets, but will receive free tokens on arrival. Once the cricket season begins, you can also buy tickets in person from the Pavilion Bar at Guildford Cricket Club on match days.

Question: Does the event sell out?

Answer: Session One on Friday evening always sells out and there is no guarantee that tickets will be available on the day for the two Saturday sessions. You are strongly advised to purchase tickets in advance to avoid disappointment. Tickets are on sale from 1st March so there is no reason to leave it until the last minute.

Question: I bought a ticket to the GBF but now find I can’t attend.  Can I get a refund?

Answer: Sorry – no. Our policy is no refunds of tickets or tokens purchased in advance. This is because refunds involve a lot of online work and administration, just at the time when we are flat out busy. For the same reason, we don’t swap tickets bought for one session for another. However, if you have bought a ticket that you then find you can’t use, we have no objection to you transferring it to a friend. There is no need to tell us – the transferee will be admitted to the event.

Question: Can I buy a ticket to the Saturday afternoon session and then stay on in the evening?

Answer: No. It is a condition of our Licence that admission is by ticket to each timed Session. We are required to close the bars and stop serving at 4 pm at the end of the Saturday afternoon Session, with the ground to be clear half an hour later. If you would like to attend the Saturday evening Session at 6 pm, you will need to be re-admitted and have a ticket for that Session.

Question: What is the latest time for admittance?

Answer: The last admission is one hour before the Session ends.

Question: Why is there an entry charge when I then have to pay for my beer?

Answer: The admission price includes a commemorative GBF tasting glass and a souvenir programme with the full beer list and tasting notes. We also have to cover quite large overheads – hire charges for the marquees, mobile toilets, lighting, fencing and the musical entertainment. There are also cleaning, insurance, security and administrative costs. The GBF an upmarket event with high quality facilities, and we do not skimp on the set up.

Happy people at the GBF

Question: What is there to drink?

Answer: In the main Beer Tent, we will again be concentrating on cask ales sourced from independent and micro-breweries within a 30 mile radius. There will be around 100 different beers to sample from around 25 breweries. There will be a varied range of ABVs, colours and different styles of ale (IPAs, best bitters, milds, porters, stouts, blonde ales, strong ales). There is also a wide section of chilled keg craft beers. There will be a second bar at the side of the Music Tent, selling an interesting range of handmade ciders, and wines from local vineyards, gins and other spirits from local distillers, and soft drinks.

Question: How does the token payment system work?

Answer: You purchase drinks and food with plastic tokens. One token buys you ½ pint of beer or cider (all beers and ciders are priced the same and are sold by the ½ pint). Tokens are used at most beer festivals. It makes paying for beer simple and quick, speeding up service.

Question: How much do tokens cost?

Answer: You can purchase 9 tokens in advance for the discounted sum of £15 at the same time as you purchase admission tickets online. This works out at £1.67 per ½ pint or £3.33 per pint. A glass of wine costs 2 tokens and a single gin and tonic is 3 tokens. Tokens purchased at the event will be available in various multiples and the cost works out at approximately £1.83 per ½ pint or £3.66 per pint.

Question: Can I purchase tokens in advance?

Answer: Yes – we have introduced advance purchase. You can pre-order and pay for tokens online at the same time as you book tickets. On arrival, you will collect your pre-ordered tokens at the Admission Desk. This will speed up your admission to the event.

Question: Can I purchase tokens at the event?

Answer: Yes of course. If you don’t buy them in advance, you buy them at the Admission Desk. There are signs explaining how much tokens cost and how many it makes sense to buy. Don’t purchase too many – there is NO REFUND for unused tokens at the end. If you run out during the evening, you can easily buy more at the front desk (and there will be no queue after the initial rush).

Question: Can I pay for tokens by card or do I need cash?

Answer: This year we have a couple of PayPal Here Contactless Chip and PIN Card Readers at the Admission Desk. Paying by cash will probably be quicker but, as cashless payment is now so common, we are offering that facility. Note that payment for meals from the two food concessions is by cash only.

Question: Will I be able to get food at the event?

Answer: Yes – there will two high quality food concessions. The food offering will include a hog roast, gourmet burgers, paella and vegetarian options. Note that you pay for food using TOKENS this year (unlike in previous years, when you had to use cash to purchase food).

Question: Will there be live music?

Answer: Yes – The GBF is well known for its live music offering. Music will be performed in the Anderton’s Music Tent.

Question: Am I allowed to bring my dog?

Answer: Sorry – guide or assistance dogs only. The event is very busy and not suitable for dogs.

Question: Can I bring the kids or a baby in a pram?

Answer: Our Licence states that there is strictly no admission for persons under the age of 18.

Question: Is there a long queue to get in?

Answer: Every effort is made to admit people as quickly as possible. However, the GBF is very popular and the capacity is 2,000 persons per session. We work very hard and we start admitting people a few minutes before the Session start time (when the bars begin serving). We scan tickets electronically and have introduced payment for tokens in advance as well as cashless card payment. We have to do a security check on bags at the entrance but have additional security staff for that.

Question: Are there security staff at the event?

Answer: Yes. It is a condition of our Licence that we have an adequate number of stewards, including SIA licensed security staff. The GBF is traditionally a friendly and relaxed event. Whilst the Organisers reserve the right to refuse entry or require any person who is intoxicated to leave, this has happened only a couple of times in the 9 years the event has taken place.

Question: Are there security checks at the admission gate?

Answer: As is usual at large public events, our security staff will search bags at the point of admission. Depending on advice received at the time from the police, it is possible there may be additional security precautions.

Question: Can I bring my own drink or food?

Answer: Bringing in alcoholic drinks is strictly prohibited and misses the point of the event, which is to try a wide range of interesting local beers, ciders, gins, wines, etc. Our security staff will normally permit you to bring in an unopened bottle of water. At their discretion, the security staff may issue you with a new bottle of water free of charge, instead of the bottle you bring with you. There will be two clearly marked stand pipes with mains water for visitors to obtain drinking water during the event.

There will be three different catering stands offering a wide range of meals (including vegetarian options). However, if you prefer to bring your own sandwiches, etc for personal consumption, this is fine.

Question: Will I be able to watch cricket during the Saturday afternoon?

Answer: No, there is no match at The Sports Ground at Woodbridge Road on Saturday 8th June.

Question: Can I leave my car at the venue overnight?

Answer: Yes, you may do so as long as it is removed by 11 am the next morning. Cars parked at the venue overnight are left at the owner’s risk, with the Organisers accepting no liability.

Question: Do you offer corporate packages?

Answer: Yes. The event is very popular with local companies and organisations, who bring groups of their hardworking employees and/or business contacts. We offer a discount for groups of 10 or more. We also offer an all-inclusive corporate package comprising admission tickets and tokens for drinks and food. Details are on the website. You can obtain further information from Chad Murrin on 07767 224632 or at chad_murrin@msn.com.

Question: Are there opportunities for my business to be involved as a sponsor?

Answer: Yes. There are a number of sponsorship options. Details are on the website. You can obtain further information from Chad Murrin on 07767 224632 or at chad_murrin@msn.com.

Question: Do you need bar staff?

Answer: Yes. Most of our staff are volunteers, including expert assistance from Surrey & Hants Branch of CAMRA and students at Surrey University studying International Event Management.  If you are interested in joining the team, email our Operations Manager Steve Page (Event & Venue Partnerships) at info@evpartnerships.co.uk or call him on 01483 678930 or 07973 739516.

GBF Sponsors & Partners

Hog's Back Brewery
ingleby, App Developers Godalming, Surrey
Silent Pool Gin, commercial partner with the GBF
andertons music company logo
Itchen Valley Brewery, commercial partner with the GBF
Perfect Pitch Marquees - Sponsors of the Guildford Beer Festival
The Angel Hotel, Guildford, Preferred hotel partner to Guildford Cricket Club
Dee Stevens Web Studio logo