WOTFEST, a beer and arts festival dedicated to promoting equality and diversity in the brewing industry, will take place from 24 – 28 May 2023 across Harrogate and online, with national partners hosting their own initiatives.
The festival is organised by Rachel Auty, a Yorkshire-based beer enthusiast and champion of women’s rights. She explains that Women On Tap aims to showcase women who are experts in the beer industry while also championing breweries with women in key brewing and leadership roles.
“We want to celebrate the amazing work that women are doing in brewing and related fields,” says Auty. “But we also want to raise awareness about the challenges they face and create more opportunities for them.”
The festival will feature tap takeovers, live and online events, and the release of new digital material, including podcasts, creative pieces, and online articles. This year the festival will also partner with national women-in-beer advocates to present satellite events within the main festival dates. A WOTFEST SEVEN beer will be brewed with Harrogate Brewing Co – a brewery rooted in the town where Women On Tap began.
Since the first festival in 2017, WOTFEST has garnered support across the beer industry – from local businesses to big names in brewing and national media. Sponsorship for 2023 has been pledged to date by Thornbridge Brewery, Harrogate Brewing Co, Turning Point Brew Co, Simpsons Malt, and Brew York, with one-off and regular donations also helping to fund the work.
“We acknowledge that it’s really tough right now, and the beer industry is being hit hard. We also know that Covid has drastically set back progress made on giving women a voice and equal rights and so we simply have to keep the issue in the spotlight. We believe that everyone should have equal opportunities regardless of their gender or background and we still see women are marginalised in the beer industry. This conversation has to be pushed beyond International Women’s Day” says Auty.
“WOTFEST is not just about beer; it’s about creating a space where people can come together to learn from each other, share experiences and ideas to build a better, more resilient beer industry.”
The full programme will be announced mid-April. See www.womenontap.co.uk
Breweries with women brewers, women in main business decision-making roles, and those with a significant proportion of women in their workforce are currently being asked to complete a form to feature on a Women On Tap 2023 showcase list. More here: https://forms.gle/wDFABsbTMJfFqJFS9