BEER lovers will be raising a glass to St Nicholas at this month’s Harwich and Dovercourt Bay Winter Ale Festival.

The event will get underway in Kingsway Hall, in Dovercourt, on Wednesday, November 16, at 5pm.

It will then run from Thursday to Saturday, November 17 to 19, from 11am to 11pm.

There will be a wide range of real ales, ciders, perries and international bottled beers.

Each year, the festival has a theme and the organising committee has announced this year’s will be the bicentenary of St Nicholas Church.

Colin Cheesman, chairman of the organising committee, said: “Harwich’s St Nicholas Church is an iconic building both from the land and from the sea and it was consecrated in 1822.

“The committee were unanimous in agreeing that the bicentenary is the perfect choice of theme for this year’s Harwich beer festival.”

Any money raised from the festival will be given to the Saint Nicholas church stonework appeal.

“The building is 200 years old and the stonework is in need of repair in places,” added Colin.

“If we can do a little bit to assist that work while enjoying good beer and good company at the festival then that will be really good news.”