Announcing Friends & Family & Beer 2020

We’re absolutely thrilled to announce details of Friends & Family & Beer 2020!

Last week, we finalised arrangements to host the second edition of our festival on February 21st and February 22nd at Manchester Central, which is not only a world-class events space but also a beautiful and iconic building steeped in Manchester’s industrial history.

Manchester Central is a venue that will allow us to take the visitor experience up a notch, and one that’s aligned with our ambition to make Friends & Family & Beer one of the best festivals of its kind in Europe.

This year’s festival was an absolutely unbelievable experience. We went from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows, before being catapulted back to the peak once more, but we couldn’t have done any of that without the support - both emotional and physical - provided by the attending brewers, volunteers, ticket-holders, sponsors, sympathetic folks working within the council and local authorities, and all the wonderful people that rallied for us online.

The actions of these incredible people vindicated the festival’s name and ethos. We’re immensely proud to be part of a community that embodies the spirit of togetherness and collaboration in this way, and we’re also proud to be situated in a city that is always willing to extend a hand to those in need.

This is why we also decided to make Friends & Family & Beer a not-for-profit event and we’re absolutely delighted that we were able to raise £20,000 for three organisations working to alleviate the effects of poverty and homelessness in our city - Coffee4Craig, Mustard Tree and the Greater Manchester Mayor’s Charity. Over the coming months, we will share with you stories of the work done by these organisations and show how your support has made a difference to them.

The charities benefitting from next year’s festival will be revealed in due course but, once again, all profits from ticket sales will be donated to good causes.


Session one: Friday February 21st, 6pm-10.30pm

Session two: Saturday February 22nd, 11am-3.30pm

Session three: Saturday February 22nd, 5pm-9.30pm

All-inclusive, single-session tickets cost £60 and will cover entry, your festival glass, pours of beer from all of the breweries in attendance, and access to special talks, tastings and discussions. At our first festival this year, 64 of the world’s best breweries brought 327 different beers to Friends & Family & Beer and there will be even more at next year’s festival, making the beer selection one of the widest and most varied of any craft beer festival in Europe.

But the overall festival experience is something we’ll be looking to build on in 2020, providing a wider range of extra content led by attending brewers and guests from across the industry, and we’ll reveal a full programme once these details are confirmed.

It was an incredible feeling to look out at a room full of folks brimming with excitement and fun during this year’s Friday evening session, to a soundtrack provided by our own Packaging Lead, Lee Daniels. So we’ll be working on a music line-up provided by respected DJs, friends and the brewers themselves, but we’ll also be careful to ensure conversation flows freely and easily during the festival too.

You can also expect to find a selection of high-quality and wholesome food to buy at each session, from a range of the region’s best independent traders.


For those of you who like to use social media to keep track of updates and notifications, Friends & Family & Beer now has its own social media accounts on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. So please give us a like or a follow on these accounts, and if you’re on Facebook, you can RSVP onto the event page as well.


All tickets will go on sale this Friday at 6pm (August 2nd) via Ticketweb. A limited allocation of early bird tickets will be available to online customers for each session on a first come, first served basis, priced at £54. Early bird tickets are limited to one per transaction. Once they’re gone, you’ll be able to pick up standard tickets at the full price of £60.

We’re also running ticket launch events at our two tap rooms - Unit 9 and 73 Enid Street - from 6pm on Friday, with exclusive early bird allocations available at each venue. Customers will be given a code when they make a purchase at either tap room, which can then be used to buy a festival ticket online at the early bird price of £54 with a limit of one per transaction.

All-session tickets will be available for £170, with limited early birds available online for £160 on a first come, first served basis.


We are incredibly grateful to all those who gave up their time to help make this year’s festival a success, many of whom went way above and beyond what is required. We’ll announce details on how to volunteer for next year’s festival soon.


If you have suggestions on how we can ensure your time at Friends & Family & Beer 2020 is as good as it can possibly be please drop us a note via this form. Though we’re drawing on our own experiences either side of many beer, food, and drink festivals, and the feedback we’ve had in person and online already, we’d love to hear from you with any tips or experiences you’ve had that made you feel happier, safer, or more comfortable.