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Title: Welland Valley beer festival
Creator: Will Larter

Welland Valley beer festival is a pub crawl: the festival takes place in June in a dozen pubs in the delightful countryside between Market Harborough and Corby, on the Northants/Leics/Rutland borders. On the Saturday, transport between venues is provided by vintage bus enthusiasts, with a voluntary contribution from passengers as fares cannot be charged. The first bus pick up is from Market Harborough station, and buses complete complicated circuits of the valley, enabling pub crawlers to take in the various pubs in almost any sequence. It is also possible to walk between some pubs without losing too much valuable drinking time. Details at We took nearly eight hours and had to miss out a couple of pubs, though careful preparatory study of the timetable might enable you to do a complete cirtcuit in a shorter time.

Switch to route map:


The Royal George (1)
Cottingham is the first stop on the bus from Market Harborough, though you can start at other points on the "circuit". We got here at 12.35.
The Spread Eagle (2)
Just around the corner from the Spread Eagle.
Red Lion (3)
In the next village, but it's a short walk so no need to wait for a bus.
The Castle Inn (4)
The bus waits here for connections, so you should have time for a swift half. If your bus goes without you, make that a pint or two.
Marquess Of Exeter Hotel (5)
Normally a food-oriented pub, but they put a marquee in the garden for the beer festival. We missed the bus from here (it went before the timetable said it should) so we walked across the fields to the next pub.
The George & Dragon (6)
Most of the beers were in a lean-to behind the pub. Barrels were starting to run dry when we got here (16.35 on a sunny June day - people were thirsty).
The White Swan (7)
We missed this one out because word reached us at the George & Dragon that the Swan had been drunk dry!
The Hatton Arms (8)
Gretton is the final village before getting the bus back to Market Harborough. Both the Hatton Arms and the Talbot are in the festival: take your pick.