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Tuesday, 19 February, 2002, 16:34 GMT
Ale and hearty treat for cathedral visitors
Chester Pilgrim Ale and glass
The beer is being made by a Manchester company
Chester Cathedral is to return to a 1,000-year-old tradition by unveiling its own brand of beer.

The brew, Chester Pilgrim Ale, will be revealed to a thirsty public on Tuesday evening.

The venture means cathedral admission will remain free of charge to visitors.

During monastic times, the Benedictine monks, brewed beer for themselves and to refresh the many thousands of pilgrims.

'Very tasty'

The new beer is named in honour of the famous "Chester Pilgrim", carved on a fourteenth century bench-end in the cathedral choir area.

A cathedral spokesman told BBC News Online: "It is part of our fundraising push, we are one of the few cathedrals that does not ask for contributions from visitors.

"We are sure the beer will prove very popular and has already been given the seal of approval by those who has tasted it."

About one million visitors a year come to Chester Cathedral.

Saxon brewhouse

The ale will be on sale in the cathedral's refectory restaurant, the gift shop, and other licensed outlets in Chester and district.

The 5% ABV beer in 500ml bottles, is brewed by J W Lees & Co at Greengate Brewery in Manchester.

The Cathedral was rebuilt in 907 and a Saxon Minster established.

Originally the Abbey brewhouse and store houses were where houses now stand at west and north sides of Abbey Square

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See also:

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