I understand that the Scarisbrick Hotel, home of the Baron's real ale bar and the Southport CAMRA beer festival in September, has been taken over by Britannia Hotels. It's a pity that a another privately-owned hotel has been taken over by a chain, but it's better than it closing, I suppose. The local CAMRA branch are confident that the Baron's Bar, one of the top three real ale venues in town, isn't at risk, and they don't see any threat to our beer festival either. Well, let's hope they're right.
Link to Baron's Bar here and to the beer festival here.