About us

Who we are, and also, what is CAMRA?

The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) is one of the most influential consumer organisations in the UK with nearly 185,000 members. From its formation in the early 1970s CAMRA has become the largest consumer group focused on a single product.

The present thriving real ale business (many new breweries have started in the past year alone) is in no small part due to CAMRA’s existence, providing a ready “audience” for the products. CAMRA is a decentralised organisation, and most of its work is done by volunteers at local level, reinforcing national drives.

Who are we ?

The West Dorset branch of CAMRA is a group of over 680 members. Our aims are to promote the interests of the beer (and cider) drinking consumers and communities within West Dorset.

West Dorset CAMRA


Beer festivals

650 +


50 +


Organising Festivals

We are involved with two separate Beer Festivals in the area each year;

Dorchester Beerex is held on the first weekend in February and is run in partnership with Dorchester Casterbridge Rotary Club.

Weymouth Octoberfest is held on the first weekend in October and is run in conjunction with Weymouth Pavilion.

Brewery and other trips

In addition to the above Beer Festivals we also run trips to breweries and to other festivals each year.


We publish a Branch Magazine, the Giant Dongle, four times a year.

We also choose a “Pub of The Year” annually and also select which West Dorset pubs will go into the Good Beer Guide. Click on the links to see how we do this.

Our Group

The local branch is run by an annually elected committee of eight to ten people. We meet every 2nd Wednesday in the month at various venues around the area in addition to our social events. Anyone is welcome to these meetings and events.

We are always glad to see new faces at the meetings. Although we would like you to join there is no pressure to take the leap straight away nor to take on any workload that you do not want to.

Any additional information on what is going on in the area is appreciated – it is a large area and its not easy to get around it! Please let us know any information / news.

So if you enjoy a pint or are just interested come along to the next meeting – we would love to see you!