A NEW beer festival took place at Ovington Social Club on Friday, April 22 and Saturday, April 23.

The first Ovington Beer Festival took place in the village Social Club, with 14 beers, three ciders and local foods all on sale.

Founded in 1921, the village club has a long and established presence in the local area.

One of the organisers, Gary Bosworth, said it was a great success. 14 local businesses sponsored the beers, and 10 volunteers helped serve behind the bar or on the door.

Fiona Maidwell attended the event and said: "The whole village has been talking about it." 

The beers came from Nottinghamshire and Northumberland, providing a variety of styles and tastes including new beers from local brewers in Allendale, Twice Brewed, Hexhamshire, and from Backlash brewery in Prudhoe.

Gary said: "On Saturday afternoon, there was a real family vibe with children's activities provided by ArtVenturers, and the festival also saw the launch of a new local business, "Dirty Dogs", whose foot long German sausages went down a storm.

More than 250 people attended across the two days of the festival. Live music was performed by local performers including CoJo, the Hexham Uketeers, and the Byker Hillbillies.

There was also dancing from The Kelly Hendry School of Irish Dance, who were fundraising for an upcoming visit to the world championships in Canada. 

Gary said: "It was great to see so many local businesses and other organisations getting involved in the festival, either sponsoring our beers, selling food or providing the entertainment." 

He added: "It is great to see the potential for running events like this in our small village when so many volunteers get behind you." 

Martin Goodfellow also attended and said: "I've never seen the Club so busy, it was a great night."

As well as raising funds for essential maintenance works on the Club, the festival also raised more than £100 for the Stroke Association, which helps people to rebuild their lives after suffering a stroke. Plans are already under way for the second Ovington Beer Festival in 2023.