It’s time to raise a glass, yell cheers and celebrate all that’s great with Teesside’s comedy and camaraderie as preparations get underway for Stockton’s Ale & Arty Festival.
The annual shindig, hosted by ARC and The Cleveland branch of the campaign for real ale (CAMRA), has become a popular fixture in the town’s events calendar over the years – and it’s easy to see why.
If you’re the type of person who enjoys a tipple or two and some light-hearted local entertainment, then Ale and Arty is the ideal place to be this month.
A perfect marriage of ales, arts and culture, the three-day festival caters for the most discerning of drinkers and will celebrate the best of locally-brewed ales, tipples, and delicacies, as well as offering a selection of draught perrys, ciders and larger from micro-breweries around the UK, sourced specially for this event as part of Stockton’s annual beer festival by CAMRA.
A spokesperson from Cleveland CAMRA said that, as part of the event, they will be: “Showcasing eight locally-brewed ciders and four perries made from 100 percent freshly sourced apples and pears that have not been artificially processed.”
They added: “We’re going to be offering and showcasing a style of real ales and tipples to suit a variety of different preferences and palates, with drink options available from local breweries including some old favourites like HoneysuckleSmash.”
Visitors to the event will also be treated to three nights of entertainment featuring a range up-and-coming talented artists and comedians.
Kicking off proceedings on the evening of Thursday 22nd February will be Nottingham-based supergroup Class Of 76’ – a collective of local lads featuring members of Eddie & The Hotrods, The Members and The Vibrators.
Music veterans Nigel Bennett, Barrie Masters, Steve Nicol and Russ Strutter – all famous for their pedigree in the punk music industry – will be looking to pull off the ultimate tribute to new wave in a show not to be missed by all you punk-rock fans.
For those up for a laugh, then Friday’s Catch 22 comedy event will be the ideal night for you. With Mc Matt Reed at the helm of all the booze and banter and a selection of top-class new comedians footing the bill, it’s sure to be a celebration of all things wonderful about comedy.
First on the bill for the evening will be comedian Lloyd Langford – a top class act best known for his work on QI, Never Mind The Buzzcocks, Mock The Week, Live at the Apollo and Russell Howard’s Good News. With a pretty impressive CV behind him, he’s sure to get the crowd warmed up ready for Ian Stone – a top ten ranked comedian in the UK for his topical, edgy wit and provocative humour.
Rounding off the festival for 2018 with great style and finesse will be the mighty Tynesiders, Big Red &The Grinners.
Having received great praise from festival organisers across the region for their pitch-perfect harmonies, solid musicianship and top-class showmanship, the five-piece band are sure to put on a show like no other as they move seamlessly through covers ranging from Technotronics to Tony Rice to Jay-Z, with a country folk-banjo style twist.
Entry to the festival during the day, from 11am to 5pm Thursday to Saturday, will cost £2.00 and will be payable on the day to CAMRA staff. Beer festival tickets will be available on Thursday and Friday from £4.50 and Saturday for £3.50.
For evening tickets, and for further information, please head to arconline.co.uk or call ARC Box Office on 01642 525199.
The festival will take place at ARC in Stockton from Thursday 22nd to Saturday 24th February.