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CAMRA Revitalisation Project

Leicester next stop for debate on CAMRA’s future

Drinkers and pub-goers in Leicester and the surrounding areas can have their say on the future of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) this Thursday when one of its 50 consultation meetings taking place around the country is staged in the city.

CAMRA, which is one of the largest single-issue consumer groups in Europe, is gathering views from as many as possible of its over 180,000 members as part of its Revitalisation Project - a strategic review of the organisation’s purpose and structure.

In what is the first consultation meeting to be staged in the East Midlands region, CAMRA members will be heading for the The Phoenix - where the event will take place on Thursday 23 June, from 7.30 to 9.30pm.

Chair of the Leicester branch of CAMRA, Shawn Collier, said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming a good attendance of CAMRA members from the local area and beyond. This is a wonderful opportunity to contribute towards important decisions about the future direction of the campaign.”

All around the country there’s been incredible interest in the consultation. More than 20,000 members nationwide completed the survey (online and by post) to offer their views on where they think CAMRA should be heading.

The Revitalisation Steering Committee representative at the meeting will be James Lynch, a former chairman of CAMRA and founding member who also at one time ran his own brewery.

The rise of “craft beer” and a resurgence of interest in beer in recent years, plus renewed threats to pubs, have challenged CAMRA to review its campaigning strategy for the future.

It may be that members decide CAMRA’s current purpose - campaigning for real ale, cider and perry - is still relevant but other options for consideration include becoming a consumer organisation for all beer drinkers, all pub-goers regardless of what they drink, or even all alcohol drinkers, regardless of where they drink it.

CAMRA founder member and Revitalisation Project chairman Michael Hardman said: “This could mark a fundamental turning point for the Campaign for Real Ale.  

“It’s a chance for our members to tell us who we should represent in the future and for what we should be campaigning for.

“Every effort is being made to consult with as many as possible of our members to ask them who and what we should represent in the future.”

He added: “If you care about beer and pubs but haven’t got round to joining yet, we still want to hear from you! Come along to one of our events. If you’re not already a member you can still come along to a meeting if you join CAMRA on the door.”

CAMRA members can sign up to attend one of the meetings by logging on to http://www.camra.org.uk/revitalisation

Don't worry if you cannot attend this one, there are other meetings in East Midlands and the surrounding regions you could attend: Doncaster and Lincoln 20 August, Norwich 3 September, Milton Keynes 8 September, Shrewsbury 10 September, Derby 21 September and St Albans 27 September .

Notes to editors

CAMRA currently has over 180,000 members. All members have been posted a consultation booklet and invited to complete a survey or attend one of almost 50 consultation meetings across the country this summer.

Consultation sessions will also be held with selected stakeholders in the pub and brewing industry, as well as with journalists and MPs.

The Revitalisation Project steering group will consider the outcomes of the consultation and present a proposal for CAMRA’s future purpose, positioning and campaigning activity for members to approve at CAMRA’s Members’ Weekend in April 2017.

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