- Not enough tables. The hall is small and space is limited; when the festival is busy, there simply isn't the space to provide as much seating as they'd ideally like to. There isn't another venue in or near the town centre that is suitable, available and affordable.
- The beer choice didn't impress him. The festival had beers from many local microbreweries that you may not readily come across in Southport pubs, such as: 3 Potts (Southport); Big Clock (Accrington); Burscough (Burscough); Connoiseur (St Helens); Problem Child (Parbold); Red Star (Formby); Parker (Banks); Third Eye (Eccleston); Melwood (Knowsley); Rock The Boat (Crosby).There were also beers from more established small breweries, such as Bank Top, Southport, Prospect, Liverpool Organic and Liverpool Craft. The original point of beer festivals was to introduce people to beers they don't usually come across, and in this respect I regard the festival as a success. I also approve of supporting local microbreweries. But, whatever beers you put on, you won't please everyone.
- Loads of dissatisfied customers. Did he really spend all the time it would have taken to conduct market research on 30 people at the beer festival? Or has he exaggerated ever so slightly? As a floor walker on the Friday evening, I spoke to a lot of people, rather more - I suspect - than the letter writer. I didn't hear a bad word about the festival; nor did I on the Saturday as a customer.
- On neither day did I see discarded food lying around in any great quantities.
To be fair to the writer, he did give his name and address. I am unimpressed when people write scathing letters to the papers (or, for that matter, put highly critical comments on blogs) and then hide behind anonymity. I am not, however, convinced that his views are as representative as he would like to claim.
In general, I appreciate the efforts of the volunteers on the festival committee who put in a lot of work in their own time for no reward to provide a significant local event which this year supported our local breweries, quite a few of which are very new. That work deserves a better acknowledgement than the letter in the Visiter would suggest.