December 2013 - Review of the campaign during the last year

Twelve months ago last week, 1,200 CAMRA members descended on Westminster to lobby their MP and ask for their support to scrap the damaging beer duty escalator. This show of dedication and passion, and all of the other campaigning undertaken by local volunteers, directly contributed to the Chancellor's decision to not only stop the beer duty escalator but to cut beer duty for the first time in over 50 years!

But that's just the start of our work in 2013 to support and protect real ale and pubs. Read on to find out what else we are doing and how you can get involved now and in the New Year.

CAMRA's first Mass Lobby of Parliament was a momentous day which turned the tide of our campaign and was a fantastic achievement for our organisation. The incredible support by members who travelled from across the country to lobby their MP as well as the 109,000 consumers who signed the campaign e-petition was crucial in persuading the Chancellor to scrap the escalator and even cut beer duty – saving consumers £1 billion over 5 years.

This Government’s support for pubs has continued throughout 2013 as shown by the Chancellor’s announcement in the Autumn Statement where a £1000 business rates discount was awarded to most pubs.

To keep up the pressure on Government to support your local, please remember to send your Christmas card (sent in December’s What’s Brewing) to your MP thanking them for their support and calling for a freeze in beer duty at Budget 2014.

This year CAMRA launched a nationwide promotional campaign to let people know just how good real ale is. These posters & beer mats highlight key facts about real ale, the variety of styles available and the number of fantastic real ales on offer around the country.
Watch out for them in a pub near you!

If you love your local pub and think it adds lots of value to your community you now have the opportunity to give it extra protection from developers by listing it with your Council as an Asset of Community Value (ACV).
Since we launched our List Your Local campaign in April, over 260 pubs in England have been listed as ACVs. Pubs are the most listed building in the Government scheme and this shows the strength of feeling in communities for their pubs.
ACV listing is another important tool to use in the battle to defend our pubs and we hope to increase the number of pubs listed throughout 2014.

For advice and support on how to nominate your favourite local pubs visit

To reinforce just how important pubs are to communities all over the UK, CAMRA has run a series of promotional campaigns in 2013. From an entire month dedicated to visiting your local (April) to letting people know about the millions of pounds pubs raise for charity every year (July) to reminding you of the key moments in all our lives that take place in our community pubs (October), the campaigns have shone a spotlight on all the things pubs do that you might not have realised.

Our campaign to deliver a fair deal for publicans tied to big pub companies took an important leap forward in 2013. The Government launched a consultation into this relationship and an announcement on their next steps is expected early in the New Year. Thank you for your dedication to this campaign which has resulted in the cross-party support of 204 MPs.

Please don’t let the momentum drop – write to Vince Cable today using our campaign website to urge him to do the right thing and act to save Britain’s pubs.

CAMRA's new online pub database,, was launched to the public in September. The site's listings, compiled and maintained by local CAMRA volunteers, now feature details of 35,900 real ale pubs!

Alongside the nationwide promotion for real ale (see above), CAMRA has produced and distributed brand new material promoting real cider and perry. This material was released in conjunction with celebrations of our 25 years of campaigning for real cider and perry and are aimed at raising awareness of the 100% natural pedigree of these popular, traditional British drinks.
Look out for these in a pub near you!

Thanks again to you, our members. Our campaigning wouldn't be possible without your hard work and support, so treat yourselves to a well-deserved pint this Christmas.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,

Colin Valentine
CAMRA National Chairman