York Beer & Cider Festival 2018

York CAMRA is delighted and excited to be able to announce the dates of their 2018 Beer & Cider Festival – the largest outdoor festival in the North.

The Festival will be held from Wednesday 19th – Saturday 22nd September on York Knavesmire in the newly named Clocktower Enclosure opposite the racecourse grandstand. There is a map on the homepage of this website so you can see where the entrance is.

Got a question? Check out our FAQ below. If you're still puzzled then get in touch on Facebook/Yorkbeerfestival or twitter @beerfestyork.

Got a question?

Over the years we have managed to answer quite a few questions about the beer & cider festival. We now provide a comprehensive FAQ section to assist you before, during and after.

View our FAQ's below...

Where is the festival?

In a giant marquee on York’s famous Knavesmire. We’ve moved to better facilities opposite York Racecourse Grandstand by the winning post. Although the postcode is  YO23 1EX - entry will be at the top of Knavesmire Rd through a gate by the owners and trainers entrance and will be signposted.

What are the opening hours?

5pm -11pm on Wednesday 19th and midday -11pm on Thursday 20th to Saturday 22nd. Last admissions on all 4 evenings will be 10.30pm (although we can’t imagine you wanting to arrive that late !) and all bars will stop serving at 11pm.

What are the times of the special festival bus service?

A special festival return bus service, in association with York Pullman, will operate from 19/09/18 to 22/09/18 departing from York Rail Station

The fares to be paid by the passengers direct to the driver are £2.00 – Single. £3.00 – Return

Click the image below to view full size

Bus Timetable 2018 V2

Let’s get down to business, what is there to drink?

There will be over 480 real ales; over 100 real ciders; around 30 keykeg beers and a Foreign Beer bar selling a selection of 20+ draught foreign beers (draught and bottled beers including lagers). There will also be a selection of wines and soft drinks.

What are the admission charges?

Wednesday 19th - Public £3.50, CAMRA members £1.50;

Thursday 20th - Public £4.50, CAMRA members £2.50;

Friday 21st/Saturday 22nd - Public £5.50, CAMRA members £3.50

Why do I have to pay to get in?

The cost of putting on a festival of this scale is very significant and admission charges go towards covering just some of the outlay on things such as marquee hire, fencing, generators, toilet facilities, bar equipment & scaffolding.

Do I have to buy a glass?

You will need to buy a souvenir polycarbonate festival pint or half pint “glass” for £2.50 when you arrive (licencing conditions do not allow real glass) which can be refunded should youchoose, when you leave the festival.

Are there beer tokens or is it a cash bar?

There will be no beer tokens – you pay cash for your beverage, as you would in a pub.

How much is a pint?

Visitors in previous years will know that we keep prices as reasonable as possible. Beers will be priced individually to reflect their strength (ABV).

Do you sell drinks in thirds of a pint?

Yes, glasses are marked for third and half pint measures as well.

Will there be a programme available?

Yes, for just 50p you can buy a programme listing all the available beverages with tasting notes. If you purchase a ticket in advance you get a free programme as part of the price.

Will all the beers in the programme be available at all times?

We will endeavour to have the greatest range of beers on at all times but reserve the right to keep beers from sale due to them not being ready for drinking. The range will of course diminish as beers sell out.

Do you sell lager?

Although this is primarily a real ale festival there will be a selection of premium world lagers available at the Foreign Beer Bar. Do not expect the mass produced brands that you would see in your local

Can I bring my own beer?

No - soft drinks only in plastic bottles.

Can I bring children?

Under 18's will be admitted with a responsible adult but will be required to leave by 8pm.

Will I be able to buy food at the festival?

Yes, there will be a wide variety of 9 different hot and cold foods encompassing cuisines from around the world including numerous vegetarian options.

Are there any cashpoints onsite?

There are no cashpoints onsite so please bring plenty of cash although if you do run out of cash we have a cashback facility at a single point in the marquee. If you're coming by train there are cashpoints on York Station. The nearest cashpoints by foot are Bishopthorpe Rd Shops or Sainsbury’s Blossom Street - both around 1 mile away.

Is there a smoking area?

There is a very large beer garden with extensive seating that accommodates smokers.

Will there be parking available?

There is plenty of parking for bikes. There will be limited on-street parking for cars adjacent to the festival on Knavesmire Road, but of course we do not recommend driving to the festival unless you are a non-drinker.

What about dogs?

Dogs that are kept under control and on a lead at all times are allowed.

Is there live entertainment?

There is a varied programme of live music covering most sessions - exact details of the music acts and various sessions are still being finalised and will appear nearer to the festival.

What if it rains?

The huge marquee is large enough to accommodate everyone onsite. There is plenty of standing room in the marquee as well as plenty of seating.

Will I have to queue to get in?

Most of the day there will be no queue (apart from opening time). In 2016 the peak was 10 minutes on Friday night. If we reach our safety limit then we may have to go to "oneout one in". If you buy tickets in advance at busy times you will have your own fast-track queue.

Do you offer corporate packages?

Yes – please contact for more details.

Do you still need bar staff?

Yes we do. Over 200 volunteers selflessly work on all aspects of the festival, from setting up to taking down. We are still recruiting volunteers (CAMRA members) to work in all areas of the Festival. If you work a full session at the festival either behind the bar or in any other capacity we will give you a food and drink allowance as a thank you.

Can you recommend accommodation?

York Visitor Information Servicehas a good booking service at as well as the regular online portals such as and For holiday lets and rentals starting from just £42 per night have a look at

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Knavesmire Rd
York, YO23 1EX

See location on Google Maps click here

See location maps here




September 19th - 22nd 2018

CAMRA members only – from 3pm – 5pm

Open to public from 5pm - 11pm
Thursday - Saturday 12-11pm 



Public/CAMRA members:

Wednesday 19th £3.50/£1.50
Thursday 20th £4.50/£2.50
Friday 21st £5.50/£3.50
Saturday 22nd £5.50/£3.50

Glasses £2.50 refundable deposit for standard glasses.