Beer & Berries 2021

21 August 2021

Beer & Berries 21 August 2021

Come and spend the day at Hospitalfield!

It’s the height of summer and Angus is bursting with fruit and full of grain, Beer & Berries is a perfect opportunity to celebrate the rich food and drink culture that is so abundant across Angus and Tayside, especially at this time of year. We have developed Beer & Berries as a regional festival showcase, connecting food & drink producers and suppliers to buyers and customers, set alongside a programme of talks, workshops, events and music.

This year the theme of our programme focusses on the many uses of plants in the treatment of illness. Developed in partnership with FEAST Journal, we will be foraging, planting, talking and listening. We are delighted that the band Sacred Paws will be joining us and playing in the open air.

Visitors can stroll around the many stalls and buy excellent quality food & drink, meet the producers, growers and local suppliers and enjoy so much more.

Tickets available for £6 per person and offer full access the stallholders area, Live Music featuring Sacred Paws, the talks & workshops programme (book in advance) and as well entry to the Walled Gardens and Fernery.

Advance booking is essential, tickets available for timed entry here

Talks & Workshops: From Monks to Medicine

The talks for this year’s Beer & Berries take a look at the many uses of plants in the treatment of illness and have been developed in partnership with Laura Mansfield at FEAST Journal. The history of modern medicine has its roots in herbalism, as our skills with organic chemistry developed individuals were able to modify and adapt plants, extracting different compounds for the treatment of disease. Join us as we explore plants as both herbal medicine and a vital compound in contemporary pharmaceuticals.

11.30: Botanicals & Modern Medicine The Wellcome Centre of Anti-Infectives Research in Dundee will introduce their recently planted public garden. Irene Hallyburton, a researcher currently working to discover new drugs for the treatment of malaria will talk about the role of the garden & how the different species planted tell a story of the centre’s ongoing work. Ali Floyd, Public Engagement Manager at the Wellcome Centre, will discuss the pocket medicinal gardens they have been initiating following the opening of their public garden. Following the talk, join the Wellcome Centre team and Hospitalfield’s Head Gardener Kate Robinson for a Collective Planting as they plant two ‘companion beds’ of medicinal plants. Reserve your tickets here

12.00pm: EATING | THINGS Foraging walk and workshop for children & their grown ups with Sneha Solanki. EATING | THINGS is an ongoing family project which documents the journey of two infants, as they start to learn and eat edible flora and fungi. Reserve your tickets here

 12.30: Growing from the Past Professor Geoff Squire, previously head of Plants, Soils and Environment at the James Hutton Institute Dundee (now honorary), will talk about the history of herbal remedies over the last few thousand years, and in particular the role of religious houses in disseminating both the plant material and knowledge of how to make a wide range of botanical medicines. As the site of Monastic hospital, Hospitalfield is connected to a history of herbalism. Geoff will discuss how particular plant species came to be grown in the UK through a European network of monastic knowledge, as well as describing some of the plants’ continued uses. Following his talk, Geoff will offer a brief Tour of Hospitalfield Gardens identifying herbs that were regularly used by monks for the treatment of disease. The walk will end at the newly planted medicinal beds.Reserve your tickets here

1.30pm: Solidarity Medicine Making Session with Ju Scott Join artist and trainee herbalist Ju Scott for a brief overview of radical herbal organisations working in communities across the UK and learn to make several herbal preparations in solidarity with Herbal Unity. During the workshop participants will make a calming and sleep inducing sniffer, relaxing foot bath salts and a joint and muscle salve. You will talk over the ingredients and the activity. As a participant you will be able to take one of each home with you for yourself and for anyone you care for. You will also have helped to prepare herbal remedies that will be distributed by Herbal Unity in their community and will receive print outs of the recipes and methods to take home. Reserve your tickets here

2.00pm: EATING | THINGS A second chance to join this Foraging walk and workshop for children & their grown ups with Sneha Solanki. EATING | THINGS is an ongoing family project which documents the journey of two infants, as they start to learn and eat edible flora and fungi. Reserve your tickets here

2.30pm: Searching/Researching future medicines Professor Marcel Jaspars, Head of the Marine Biodiscovery Centre at Aberdeen University and previously Scientific Project Leader of the EU project ‘PharmaSea’, will introduce his research looking for invertebrate and microbial life in extreme environments including the desert, deep sea and Antarctic. Marcel will describe how researchers across the globe are searching for new organic compounds that can provide treatment for antibiotic resistant diseases as well as treatments for Alzheimer’s disease and Epilepsy. He will bring a selection of different sponges, corals and seasquirts whose compounds have been used to develop future medicines to share with the talks attendees. Join the Round Table Discussion which follows this talk at which The Wellcome Team, Geoff Squire of the James Hutton Institute and Professor Jaspars will discuss their shared areas of research inviting conversations with the audience on aspects of their earlier talks. Reserve your tickets here

Tickets for Talks and Workshops are included in the entry price for Beer & Berries, but must be reserved in advance. Purchase your ticket for Beer & Berries here

Live Music

Live music for Beer & Berries this year is supplied by Sacred Paws! The band are set to fill atmosphere at the event with their distinctive brand of sunny, infectious and not-too-serious pop melodies with a live perfomance in the open air, set in the beautiful grounds of Hospitalfield.

Sacred Paws formed in 2014 when guitarist and vocalist Rachel Aggs (also a member of Shopping and Trash Kit) and drummer Eilidh Rodgers’ former band Golden Grrrls disbanded. Sacred Paws’ debut album Strike A Match is a collection of ten complex yet instantly infectious songs, described by Pitchfork as “… tightly-wound art punk [that] unspools their anxiety and turns it into something worth celebrating”. The record was awarded the 2017 Scottish Album of the Year Award. Their second album, Run Around The Sun is out now

The music kicks off at 4.30pm. Tickets for this live performance are included in the entry cost for Beer & Berries, purchase your ticket here


Meet the Stallholders

Stallholders make Beer & Berries. This is your opportunity to meet local producers, purchase fresh produce and try something new. These are some of the Stallholders attending this year:

Jam Competition 2021

The Jam Competition returns for Beer & Berries this year and we are asking you to join in and present a jar of jam that you think will stand out and win. We are delighted that  Mackays Jam and our very own Hospitalfield Chef Manager Simon Brown are joining forces again in tasting the jams and coming up with a winner.

Enter before 17 August here.

Join us for Afternoon Tea for 2 on the Lawn to celebrate the Beer & Berries Festival with Mackays. This year, we have teamed up with local jam specialists Mackays, who have been making their distinctive range of preserves, marmalades and curds here in Arbroath for decades.
Book your place to enjoy a specially designed Afternoon Tea featuring a selection of beautifully prepared sandwiches, freshly baked scones and delicious cake served with tea/coffee of a glass of our favourite sparkling wine.
• Afternoon Tea for 2 served with Tea or Coffee: £20
• Afternoon Tea for 2 served with Sparkling Wine: £25

Please note that Afternoon Tea for 2 may only be booked as part of the Beer & Berries Festival, tickets for which are available here for £6

Reserve Afternoon Tea for Two

Afternoon Tea for 2 is available during the following bookable timeslots:
Please use the calendar system to book your preferred timeslot, or alternatively call the Garden Café on 01241 656124, or email

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