IF you are a lover of real ale and beer, and a supporter of local brewerys, what better way is there to get out there this weekend (and every day in fact, up until November 24) on The Ale Trail?

It's a fun (and delicious) precursor to the forthcoming Rochford Beer and Cider Festival 2018, which is on from November 21 - 24.

Organised by the volunteers of South East Essex CAMRA - the 'CAMpaign for Real Ale' - the Ale Trail encourages people to visit six different pubs and a club in the South East Essex area.

Maggie Osborne, of SE Essex CAMRA explained: "The venues range from micropubs (including the tiny West Road Tap, Westcliff) to large establishments like the Peterboat in Old Leigh, as well as country pubs including the Shepherd and Dog in Ballards Gore.

"The area encompasses the South East Essex CAMRA Branch, including Billericay to Hockley, and Southchurch to Benfleet.

"Customers must buy a pint of real ale or real cider at six different venues. Once the Ale Trail is completed, it can be exchanged for a free glass and a free pint to fill it, at South East Essex CAMRA's Beer and Cider Festival from November 21 to 24, from noon to 10pm."

She added: "The festival is run by the volunteers of CAMRA who give up their time to organise it and staff it. From the front desk to the glass washers, and all the people serving beer, cider, perry and more, all are unpaid volunteers.

"Many give up a week of work to set up, staff the festival and take down the festival which takes eight days.

"SE Essex CAMRA don't only rely on volunteers to keep the festival going, but advertising and sponsorship too.

"Nairnsey, Fisher and Lewis (Property Lawyers and Conveyancers) are the main sponsors; their support is much appreciated."

The Beer Festival venue is the Freight House, Bradley Way, Rochford.

17 pubs are involved in the Trail, where you should be able to pick up an ale trail card (pictured). You can also download and print one via see.camra.org.uk

For more information visit facebook.com/realaleandpubs or Twitter @SEEssexCAMRA