SKIPTON, Haworth and the SpringFest beer festivals have been postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Skipton event organised by Keighley and Craven branch of Camra was due to take place from May 28-30.

The Haworth Beer Festival, organised by Bronte Bars and Events was due to take place on March 26-27 at The Friendly pub in Stanbury while Salt Beer Factory's SpringFest at their site in Shipley on April 24-25 has also fallen foul of the situation.

The Campaign for Real Ale, which runs over 180 local beer festivals across the country, has cancelled all events – including local beer festivals – planned between now and the end of June following recent government advice on mass gathering.

A notice on the Skipton event's website says: "We are sorry to announce Skipton Beer Festival has been postponed in line with government recommendations.

"We will be looking into options for the autumn. For now we hope all keep well and keep safe."

A post on the Facebook site of Bronte Bars and Events, organisers of the Haworth event, said: "As much as we want the Haworth Beer Festival to proceed, we feel that this is not the time to 'Quaffer’ fine ales and mingle.

"We have worked with the venue to secure a new date of Friday 10th July 2020 in the hope that we can all get together again, continue with business as usual, as we will all be ready for a pint by then.

"A challenging time yes for us all, but take comfort in knowing that gathering together for live experiences is core to our human experience. When this outbreak recedes, we all will return stronger than ever and drink beer!

"In the meantime use ya nogging when out and about! Support the local pub, keep our breweries going & more importantly the grafters."

Salt Beer Company said on its website: "Following recent developments with regards to the increasing number of Coronavirus cases in the UK, we have made the decision to cancel Springfest on 24th – 25th April 2020.

"This decision was not taken lightly, however as a company we believe this is in the best interest of attendees, visiting breweries and the general public as a whole.

"Given current advice from the government, we feel it would be irresponsible to promote an event where large numbers of people would be required to congregate; in particular in a space such as a brewery, where hygiene, health and safety are paramount.

"We would like to make it clear that, although this particular event is cancelled, we do intend to hold our Oktoberfest Beer Festival in September, details of which will follow in due course.

"We apologise for any disappointment this may cause and full refunds will be issued to those who have bought a ticket. We will issue refunds for those who bought tickets through Eventbrite. If you bought a ticket at the venue please bring it in and we will be happy to refund it.⁣

"With regards to other upcoming events at the taproom, these will be assessed on an event-by-event basis."

Camra has also cancelled all physical events, festivals and meetings, from branch to national levels, for an initial three-month period, with further cancellations to be considered regularly as the situation evolves.

Nik Antona, Camra National Chairman said: “While we understand the important social benefits of Camra and the huge pleasure in pub going, we feel it would be highly irresponsible to continue to promote gatherings of people in pubs – both of which have been advised against by the Government.

"We will, of course, be looking into what campaigning measure we can take to help support the British beer and pub industry during this unsettling time – and would repeat our calls for the Government to put together a support package to support the pub and brewery trade during this period.”

He added: “It is with a heavy heart that we have made the decision to cancel a total of 45 beer festivals between now and the end of June. Every beer festival is run by a team of dedicated volunteers, and we deeply appreciate their hard work and support during this difficult time.

“While current Government advice is that all social gatherings should be avoided in the short term, we’d like to encourage all beer-lover and pub-goers to investigate ways to continue supporting the industry, whether that be ordering their brews online from independent retailers or supporting pub crowdfunding campaigns to keep afloat."

In regard to the coronavirus situation he said: “If the Government believes people should not go to pubs, it needs to show leadership by clearly telling pubs to close their doors – and not unfairly leave it up to licensees to make an impossible decision.

"It needs to makes it clear for how long a period the enforced closure should last, and quickly deliver a package of support to see pubs and breweries through until they can again deliver the host of benefits pubs bring to the communities they serve.

“This should include, but not be limited to: extending business rate relief to all pubs, regardless of rateable value; deferring or forgiving VAT payments; covering staff salaries; allowing pubs to stay open if they provide other vital community services such as post office facilities; and helping pubs recover at the end of the crisis by introducing a differential rate of duty on draught beer served in pubs.

“We’d also call on pub companies to support their tenants by giving them a rent holiday during the crisis and particularly during any forced closure. Other suppliers such as sports TV providers could also demonstrate their support of the pub industry by giving a payment holiday.”