ORGANISERS of the Burbage Beer Festival are gearing up to celebrate the 20th year of the popular festival with a music and beer line-up that is set to impress.

The festival, which began in 1997, started after a number of people from the area attended a similar festival in Gloucester, bringing back plans to start up Burbage’s own take on the beer celebrations.

Alan Wheeler, one of the original organisers, said: “The idea came from a visit by two or three of the guys shown on the original committee going to a similar event held at Frocester Cricket Club in Gloucestershire and believing that, with a bit of luck, careful planning and a lot of hard work we could run a similar event.”

Mr Wheeler, who has been part of the festival since its inception, has said that even though some elements have been added to the proceedings, the festival is still the same in spirit.

“I have been doing it for the last 20 years. Originally it was just a beer festival with an Oompah band but now we have rock music, a pig roast and a selection of 20 beers and 20 ciders. We usually get between 600-700 people turn up to take part in the festival. The format hasn’t changed at all since we started it, we have just added things to the schedule,” he added.

Although the music has changed since the Birmingham-based Bavarian Oompah Band, there will still something to entertain the festival regulars.

“The music is a more contemporary rock on both nights of the festival but on the Friday we do have KV Brass band performing an early evening set,” said Mr Wheeler.

As well as the brass band, Friday night will see rock band Humdinger taking to the stage. On the Saturday evening a disco will be taking place for children and another rock performance by Echo.

Tickets for the festival, which takes place this Friday and Saturday, are now on sale for £8 and available from the Cricket Club bar in East Sands, Burbage, The Mace in East Sands and Wessex Print in Pewsey High Street. The festivities start at 6.30pm both nights at the festival site in East Sands, Burbage.