What is CAMRA?
With over 185,000 members around the world, the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), can be considered one of the most successful consumer campaigns ever.
CAMRA was founded by a few real ale enthusiasts in 1971, when the traditional rich-flavoured ales, still fermenting in the casks from which they were served, were being replaced by brewers producing beers with less demanding production and storing techniques.
Through CAMRA's tireless campaigning, real ale is now produced by over 1,500 breweries, with over 11,000 specialist products competing for attention.
The term ‘real ale' has been expanded to include bottle-conditioned beer, while the term ‘cask ale' is now an accepted term to indicate a beer conditioned in the cask and not served under pressure. The recent growth in breweries in the UK and the craft beer boom have added a plethora of specialist brews favoured by drinkers keen to sample something other than run-of-the-mill mass-produced beverages.
CAMRA's core aims, to promote real ale and pubs, as well as acting as the consumer's champion in relation to the UK and European beer and drinks industry, remain to this day. CAMRA also supports the growing interest in real cider and perry.
CAMRA members include not simply real ale enthusiasts and regular pub-goers, but also sociable members, who want to meet like-minded individuals, often at CAMRA festivals. We also represent those who wish to learn more about beers and brewing and those value-seekers who appreciate the discounts and special offers we can provide.
About CAMRA today
CAMRA believes well-run pubs, whether in rural or urban areas, play a critical social role in UK culture as the centres of community life. CAMRA supports the traditional pub as the best place in which to enjoy real ale and to try one of the thousands of superb beverages now produced across the UK.
CAMRA is made up of thousands of dedicated volunteers who work tirelessly to further its aim. Over 200 local branches meet and run beer festivals across the UK, giving members can campaign and socialise in their local area. Our largest beer festival, the Great British Beer Festival, is hosted each summer at London Olympia and sees CAMRA members from across the world volunteer to work at the event.
CAMRA is volunteer-led and governed by a National Executive who are elected at a Members' Weekend and lead professional staff responsible for central campaigning, research, membership services, publishing, marketing, press and administration.
CAMRA is financed by membership subscriptions, sales of books and merchandise and proceeds from national and local beer festivals. CAMRA is a not-for-profit company, limited by guarantee.
CAMRA's vision is to have quality real ale and thriving pubs in every community.
- We are independent and our policies and campaigning objectives are set by our membership
- CAMRA's decision making process is wholly independent of any commercial companies or other organisations
- We are not-for-profit and all proceeds are put back into achieving our campaigning objectives
- We are consumers. We have no commercial interests in pub or brewery ownership or management
- We are non-party political.