THOUSANDS of beer and cider lovers will be enjoying a tipple or two on the Knavesmire over the next few days as a popular festival returns.

The annual York Beer and Cider Festival, being held on the Knavesmire for the 10th year, gets under way today, with more beers to choose from than ever before.

Organised by York CAMRA, the event is expected to attract not just people from around the UK, but from all over the world.

A huge marquee in the Clocktower Enclosure at York Racecourse will house more than 500 beers and 118 ciders, making it again Yorkshire’s biggest beer festival. They will be served from Europe’s longest bar, which is more than 266ft long.

This year there is a special feature as the festival will offer eight unique beers shipped exclusively from breweries in Maine, USA.

Festival organiser Melissa Reid said: “We’re really excited to be delivering a festival this year that breaks yet more boundaries.

“We’ve more beers than ever, as well as the world exclusives from our friends in the USA. What better way to celebrate our 10th anniversary.”

The festival’s communications manager Nick Love added: “The festival is drawing national recognition and attracting the attention of global travel sites such as TripAdvisor who named York Beer and Cider Festival as one of the top 10 UK attractions to visit in September.

“We’re delighted to be acknowledged as one of the best beer festivals in the UK.”

The festival marquee features plenty of standing room and seating, while there is a large beer garden outside.

A trade session will be held from 1pm today (Wednesday, September 19), and then the festival will be open to CAMRA members from 3pm and the general public from 5-11pm.

The event will open from midday to 11pm tomorrow, Friday and Saturday.

A special bus service from York Pullman will run during the festival, with an hourly return timetable, and departing from York Station.

For more information about the event, visit: