There was a disappointingly mean-spirited and short-sighted response from Harpenden licensees to the news that the local CAMRA beer festival was going to be showing England’s first World Cup match live on TV.
“It’s not the beer festival we object to. As far as we are concerned CAMRA has nothing to do with football.”Umm, do pubs have anything to do with football either? The festival organiser had it spot on when he replied:
“CAMRA exists to promote real ale and pubs, which is why we hold a beer festival in St Albans and Harpenden.And, from the point of view of the beer festival, showing the footie is probably necessary to maintain their existing trade, much of which would otherwise head off to the pubs.
“At our first Harpenden Beer Festival last year, nearly 3,000 people went. It was well supported and brought a lot of new people to the town. That benefited local pubs; when I go to a beer festival I usually go to pub and have a pint first, or afterwards.”
On the argument that beer festivals should show football, he replied: “Does that mean we don’t have food? Does that mean we don’t have a band?”