Two clubs who banded together three years ago to stage the Whittingham Beer and Sausage Festival have declared the third such event as having been a monstrous success.
Whittingham Sports and Social Club and the Rotary Club of Longridge and Preston North joined forces in 2012 and since then the bank holiday weekend event has grown and grown in size and popularity, attracting around 4,000 people from all over the north west.
Rotary spokerperson Jack Giddins said: “We have created a monster I think. It has just taken off and was a tremendous success. We sold more than 100 barrels of beer....the bands went down a storm....and we sold out of sausages and bread rolls and had people running around to get more.
“We have done far better than last year with everything, in every aspect.”
Sponsors, who each sponsor a barrel of beer for £80 - receiving publicity and 10 tickets - contribute significantly to the event’s success, but the festival is attracting huge crowds for lots of reasons.
Jack said people were impressed with the beers. All were served through a proper beer engine, producing, he said, “a perfect pint every time.” And he said the “CAMRA boys” who were there, were believed to have been “highly impressed and taking notes”. He said the five bands bands had each been brilliant, some of them attracting their own following and these included The Bogtrotters, On the Edge, The Heat, Queenesque and to close the festival, the Cavern Club’s resident band, The Rockits.
More than 100 caravans parked up next to the club and Jack said: “I think every member of Rotary and Whittingham Club will probably sleep for a month, but it was a very enjoyable weekend.”
“Everyone enjoys it and there wasn’t one grumble. It was smashing...and we have done very well out of it.”
Once expenses are taken out, he said the club will be looking to spend the proceeds on a variety of good causes both locally and further afield, one of these being to purchase more “Shelter Boxes”.
Funds raised at last year’s festival have helped to provide for the construction of a bridge at St Catherine’s Hospice - in conjunction with South Ribble Rotary Club - to allow visitors safer access from the car park. This week the bridge is due to return to Preston after being galvanised in Worksop and will be lowered into place at the end of the month.