Equality social enterprise Women On Tap CIC (WOT) has announced the programme for its sixth consecutive beer and arts festival. With around 30 events to be delivered alongside six brand new creative commissions, nine ‘women in beer’ tap takeovers and an exhibition, the festival is set to celebrate northern beer women over five days across Harrogate and beyond.
Founded in 2017, WOT delivers beer equality campaigns and pop-up events that challenge thinking and change minds, including a legendary UK annual festival, WOTFest.
WOT collaborates with leading bars, breweries, industry experts and creatives to compile thought-provoking communications and distinctive, welcoming experiences designed to encourage women to find and/or further explore their passion for beer.
The annual festival hasn’t missed a year – even despite the enormous challenges of 2020. Rather than pull the plug on the event, the team reworked the festival, putting together an online programme of talks, tastings, virtual gigs, yoga, and panel discussions at a time when most other plans were cancelled and many people became isolated.
For the 2022 festival highlights include a beer and cheese pairing with local beer guru Nichola Bottomley; a tour of regional beer with seasonal food beer sommelier Annabel Smith, and private chef Michaela Hanna; A Conversation With Women In Beer – an ‘audience with’ style panel event featuring women in a range of roles from Track Brewing Co, Brew York, Amity, and Thornbridge; a showcase of women in music; Mindful Drinking workshops hosted by Club Soda with an emphasis on establishing positive drinking habits rather than on promoting abstinence, plus women in beer treasure hunts, quizzes, a ‘women in film’ night, a board games day, a painting pots & beer class, drink & draw, and online life drawing.
In addition, WOT are organising two beer-focused socials – one for women in beer and wider hospitality on Thursday 5th May, and one for women who enjoy drinking beer and would like to meet other like-minded women on Friday 6th May.
As a special collaboration with Lucky Saint and Club Soda, an online Mental Health First Aid workshop is being offered to women working in the beer industry with 25 funded places available. Participants will be taken through an accredited national curriculum and will receive a certificate on completion.
A special festival beer – a pineapple sour – has been brewed at Brew York as part of a collaborative WOT brew day. The beer will be available across the festival on the bars at participating venues as well as in cans.
WOT is currently entirely funded through direct sponsorship and thanks to support from individuals via a Patreon or Donorbox subscription. 2022 WOT Partners are Simpsons Malt, Brew York, Turning Point Brew Co, and Roosters Brewing Co. Sponsors include Thornbridge Brewery, Track Brewing Co and Harrogate Brewing Company and generous donations have also been received from The Disappearing Chin in Harrogate and Hop Hideout in Sheffield.
Women On Tap founder, Rachel Auty adds “We’ve had a challenging couple of years delivering on our mission through the pandemic, but it feels good to properly root the festival back in Harrogate where it all began while also retaining an element of online events and activity. We are a tiny team with an enormous goal and thanks to the incredible support we get from the UK wide beer industry, our network across Harrogate and Knaresborough, and our local friends who never fail to cheer us on from the sidelines, we continue to stride out every year – passionate, determined, and smiling! I’m so excited to bring the festival to life for the sixth year.”
WOTFEST SIX takes place from 4th to 8th May 2022. See the full programme online at www.womenontap.co.uk
Press release from Women on Tap