HUNDREDS of people flocked to the 21st Hatch Warren Beer Festival to enjoy a wide range of bitters, beers, ales and ciders.

The popular annual event boasted 37 real ales from around the UK, with plenty of locally-produced ales among those on offer.

A last-minute addition to the line-up was Warrener’s Gold – a one-off beer created for the festival by Basingstoke-based Longdog Brewery.

Other inventively-named beverages included Purple Moose, Wallops Wood, Flat Cap and Cat Nap.

The festival, held at the Hatch Warren Community Centre, in Longcross Lane, was officially opened last Friday night by borough Mayor Councillor Dan Putty, who has a long-standing association with the event.

Basingstoke act Gary Myles, who has performed at the festival in previous years, was a hit with the crowd in the evening and drinkers also enjoyed fast food from a van outside, providing burgers, chips and hotdogs to hungry revellers.

On Saturday evening, the event was more subdued, but it still attracted large crowds of people from across the borough.

Ron Gallagher, events organiser of the Hatch Warren Community Association, said they were pleased with the turnout.

He said: “It’s a really good community event which everyone enjoys. It’s not just the men either – there’s a pretty good mix of people.”

Sam Weller, who has been involved in the festival since it started, said: “Although everyone’s drinking, there is never any trouble – it’s a really good atmosphere. People come because there is such a great range of beers on offer and it’s a really good fundraiser.”

All money raised through the festival will go to the Hatch Warren Community Association, which uses funds to provide facilities and put on events for the local community.