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17th March 2022


Faversham-based brewer and pub company Shepherd Neame has joined a community effort to ensure the town’s hugely popular Hop Festival will go ahead this year.

The free annual event has been running for more than three decades and attracts thousands of visitors to the town. But last month organisers warned that this year’s event, the first after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, could be axed due to a funding shortfall.

Following a community fundraising campaign, however, along with the addition of five new sponsors joining one of the event’s long-term principal sponsors, Shepherd Neame, it will now go ahead as planned on Saturday, September 3 and Sunday, September 4.

Festival organisers Community Heritage Events, a non-profit organisation, said: “We are delighted to announce that our fundraising appeal to the people and businesses of Faversham and beyond has been very successful. Hop Festival 2022 will go ahead.

“This is testament to the enduring popularity of the Festival. We want to thank each and every person who responded to the appeal by donating a few pounds or considerably more.

“Our much-valued mainstay sponsors, Shepherd Neame, and Swale Borough Council, have been joined by new Hop Festival sponsors who are: Bridgers Law; Faversham Town Council; HatHats Coffee Company; Keiths Motors and TMS Automotive and West Faversham Community Association.

“We look forward to welcoming everyone to the best Hop Festival ever on the weekend of September 3 and 4.”

Britain’s oldest brewer, Shepherd Neame, has been supporting the event, which commemorates the golden days of hop picking in Kent, since it was first held 32 years ago. Festival goers can enjoy live music across five stages and in pubs throughout the town, along with great food and drink, a family fun area, stalls, exhibitions and other activities.

Chief Executive Jonathan Neame said: “The Faversham Hop Festival is a fantastic way of celebrating an intrinsic part of Kent’s heritage, and also provides a significant economic boost for our pubs, retailers and town as a whole, attracting thousands of visitors.

“After the unprecedented events of the past two years, it is more important than ever to bring people together, and we look forward to joining the celebrations.”

The announcement comes as a brand new website for the festival is due to launch on Thursday, March 17, thanks to funding from Swale Borough Council.

The new cyber-safe website will be available for applications for stalls at the festival, and bookings for campers.


About Shepherd Neame

Shepherd Neame has been based in the market town of Faversham, Kent for over 300 years. Perhaps best known for great British classic ales such as Spitfire Amber, which carries the Royal Warrant, its diverse portfolio includes Five Grain Lager, Bear Island East Coast Pale Ale and Bear Island Triple Hopped Lager, and the Whitstable Bay Collection. It also brews international lagers under licence including Samuel Adams Boston Lager and premium Thai lager Singha. The independent family business boasts an award-winning visitor centre and more than 300 pubs and hotels throughout London and the South East, from the historic heart of the City to the Kent coastline.

Press release from Shepherd Neame

For further information please contact Communications Executive Angela Cole on 01795 542142 or email or visit