Hop City 2021 – All You Need To Know

Having been pushed back twice due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s Hop City festival is one that the team at Northern Monk is now looking forward to more than ever.

Originally penciled in for Spring 2020, the festival was postponed, before being rescheduled for a second time due to the easing of restrictions being pushed back.

But with the event now fast approaching on August 6, Cal, and Ruby from our events team at Northern Monk have been giving some inside info to The Scribe on what to expect from the event for first-timers, as well as some details on the additional safety protocols in place to help keep you safe this year.

“We’ve invited 35-45 breweries from around the US and EU, and our favourites from the UK to pour throughout the weekend,” said Ruby, Festival Organiser.

“They all bring about 200 beers, we give you a glass, and you walk around filling it up with something delightful, eating street food while having a good time.”

Live music will feature throughout the weekend, including sets from DJ Format and Fingathing, a name perhaps familiar to Patrons Society subscribers.

With plenty of food and beer to go at over the weekend, the team shone a light on those in attendance who have sparked excitement.

Cal said: “We’ve got The Answer coming this year, which is just a bit of a dream. We found out on shift and I actually had a little dance in the shed downstairs.”

“And a lot of great street food coming – Pizza Fella, Doner Summer, Little Bao Boy, Parmogeddon,” said Ruby.

This year’s Hop City is different in more ways than one, with the festival being moved from its usual site of the Old Flax Store Refectory site in Leeds to Northern Monk’s main brewery site on Sydenham Road.

The decision was made to move the festival to give attendees the chance to see the beating heart of Northern Monk’s operations, while also being outside at all times to reduce the risk of COVID-19.

The safety of everyone in attendance is of utmost priority for all at Northern Monk and therefore some additional measures have been put in place to ensure that Hop City is ran in the most secure way possible, while still ensuring that guests can have a blast.

Please see below some of the measures/restrictions we have in place ahead of Hop City 2021:

  • All sessions are running at limited capacity to encourage social distancing.
  • Proof of a negative LFT COVID test <48 hrs before arrival will be essential, even if guests are fully vaccinated. You will be contacted directly via email with further details on this before the festival.
  • We encourage wearing a mask when queueing for and ordering beers to ensure the safety of brewers, staff, and volunteers. There will be plenty of space to sit or stand and enjoy beers once you have been served.
  • Masks and other appropriate PPE will be provided to those working at the festival.
  • Guests will be served beers in disposable cups to avoid cross-contamination of glassware. They are welcome to decant beers into their official Hop City glass once they have been served.
  • All staff, guest brewers, and volunteers will be given lateral flow tests to complete before their shift on site each day, allowing us to minimise any possible infection over the weekend.
  • We’ve doubled our team of experienced security staff who are fully briefed on all safety measures and reserve the right to ask people to leave if they are acting in a way that compromises the safety of others.

We would also like to remind all attendees of the Everyone Welcome initiative which plays out across all our sites and highlight the steps we are taking to maintain the safety of staff, brewers, volunteers, and attendees.

The Everyone Welcome initiative will be included in the programme and accessible at different points throughout the festival as a reminder of our zero-tolerance approach to discrimination and that everyone is welcome at our table.

At least one team member from all attending guest breweries will be asked to complete training on the topic of sexual harassment prior to arrival on-site, in line with our own staff training at Northern Monk.

We’re looking forward to, finally, raising a taster glass of something super hoppy with you in a few short weeks!