CAMPAIGN FOR REAL ALE Peterborough & District Branch
The Peterborough CAMRA Beer Festival is now the biggest locally organised festival of real ale in the country, but without you it cannot happen. Whether you work one session, the whole week, build the site, serve behind the bar, pick up litter or do any of the other one hundred and one jobs that need doing, you are all a vital part of this great event. Our staffing officers want everything to run smoothly, so if you have any questions or problems before you start please do not hesitate to get in touch with one of them.
This section gives you some information about what to expect at the Festival both in terms of what you can expect of us and what we expect of you.
First, a few rules
I'm sure there are more and you probably won't like them all. They are all there for a good reason, so please obey them. You must read the Staff Handbook before starting work for the first time and sign to show that you have both read and understood the contents. You must sign on at the staffing desk before starting each session. This is necessary for your safety in the event of fire and to be certain that you are insured should you have an accident. During the Festival you should check the notice board in the staff rest area for any new information relating to volunteers. No £50 notes are to be taken over the bar. The only place these can be accepted is at the glasses counter where the manager will deal with it. If you are working behind a bar, you must not tilt casks. We have cellar staff to look after and tilt casks. No Children under 16 are not allowed on site during set up and take down. Children must be accompanied at all times.
We have a very good safety record at the Peterborough Beer Festival, and intend keeping it! Apart from a few cuts and bruises, we have had no problems. As volunteers working at our beer festival, we take your safety seriously and carry out assessments to ensure that risks are reduced to a minimum. As workers at the Festival you have a duty to take care of yourselves, your fellow workers and members of the public at all times. If at any time you are unsure about any aspect of safety - ASK !!!
Safety during set up and take down
Potentially this is the most dangerous time, with casks being unloaded, heavy scaffolding being built and forklift trucks and other plant operating. Appropriate protective equipment must be worn such as safety shoes, hard hats and gloves. If in doubt, ASK. Hard hats and gloves are provided. The weight of equipment and casks can be deceptive. Always assess the load before lifting and if in doubt ask for assistance. You should take care not to drink too much alcohol during this time as you need to be fully aware of your surroundings. All persons driving forklift trucks and other plant must be competent & experienced operators.
Safety during the Festival
Once everything is set up things are potentially not so dangerous, but casks are still being moved around, lorries are still making deliveries and the forklift trucks will still be in use at times so please be careful.
Children and Safety
We know that some of you bring children along with you, and we don’t want to put them in any danger, so please note: You must Inform us if you have children under 16 that want to help so we can properly assess their task and inform you of the risks. Children under 16 must be supervised at all times. If you are working in an area where children are not allowed such as behind a bar then you will need to make alternative arrangements for their supervision. Children under 16 are not allowed on site at all during set up and take down.
While working for us we like to do our best to make you feel welcome and so we provide you with food and drink. We have tried to make this as fair as possible while keeping our accountants and stock takers happy. Below are a few details of how we do things. Making sure our volunteers are well looked after is of paramount importance to the organisers. We believe that Peterborough Beer Festival is one of the more generous festivals in the country and our previous volunteers have enjoyed their time with us. However, due to rising costs we have had to make some small adjustments to our Staff Benefits. Free Beer and cider will be provided for all working staff and a 'token system' will be in operation as in previous years. Staff who feel that they require an extra pint or two above and beyond the generous allocation will be able to purchase discounted beer. This is also the first year that we have decided to allow staff to pre purchase bottled beers (at a discount obviously!) which can be enjoyed at the Staff Bar. The Staff Bar will be open for most of the time during the festival and will operate the Token System as previously mentioned until later in the evening when it will become 'Token free'.When a "Closed" sign is displayed, the staff bar is closed to everyone As many will know the festival has an extensive catering facility and provides extremely good value and substantial meals for our volunteers. Meals are provided and will cost a nominal £2 tickets available from the staff bar.Don't just keep on working till the restaurant closes. Make sure that you get a meal break. Free tea, coffee and soft drinks are available at all times free of charge. While you are working, beer is free. However you must put a token in the till for each half pint. Tokens will be given to you by your bar manager or the person in charge of your area. No free beer is to be served over the bar in exchange for staff beer tokens. You must serve yourself. The free beer is NOT an invitation to drink as much as you want. If you get drunk you are of no use to the Festival and may be a danger to yourself and others. If you do get drunk, you will be made to stop working and leave and may not be allowed to work further sessions. Remember, you can always have a drink when the session ends Tea, coffee, soft drinks and water are available at all times in the staff rest area. Please use them. Remember that alcohol is dehydrating.
We have a central compound on site for volunteers to use for camping. This does get full so if you wish to camp and did not request it on the staffing form then let us know now.
Camping is strictly only available while you are working. If you are camping for four days you will be expected to work for four days. This is not because we are nasty; it's because the camping facilities are in great demand.
When you get on site you must obtain a camping permit before you pitch your tent.
Cars must be removed from the inner compound to the staff car park once you have dropped off your tent.
If you wish to stay off site and need details of bed and breakfast or hotels then there is some information about B&Bs and hotels on the Peterborough Council's Visit Peterborough website. Alternatively, contact the Tourist Information Centre, 3-5 Minster Precincts, Peterborough, PE1 1XS. Tel: 01733 452336 or Email. Be warned - the B&Bs fill up quickly for Beer Festival week.
If you want to camp off site then the closest camp/caravan site is Ferry Meadows Caravan Club, Ham Lane, Peterborough, PE2 5UU. Just about walkable. If you have transport then you could consider camping at The Plough, Milk & Water Drove, Ramsey Road, Farcet Fen, PE7 3DR.
We provide a car park for staff but remind you that you are going to a beer festival. You should not drive if you have been drinking. As car parking is limited it will be on a first come first served basis. When you have parked your car and signed on you will be given a parking pass. Do not lose this as you will need it to get into the car park to get your car out. The pass needs to be shown to security every time you enter or leave the car park. Do not leave the pass in your car. This is not an attempt at pettiness; it is to ensure that nobody else can remove your car without your permission. For anyone living in Peterborough or the surrounding villages, there are free buses home at the end of every evening session. They leave promptly at 12:00 and 1:00am Tuesday to Thursday and 12:30am and 1:30am Friday and Saturday. Watch the notice board in the staff rest area for any changes. If you require more information or help with travel or accommodation please get in touch with one of the staffing officers.
In the event of an emergency, such as a fire, it will be necessary to evacuate the marquees and central compound. The site is divided into four zones. ZONE 1- Entertainment marquee. ZONE 2- North beer marquee (Wine Bar). ZONE 3- South beer marquee (Foreign Beers, Cider bar and Information). ZONE 4- Glasses, staff area and inner compound. The zone controller in your area will be informed of the decision to evacuate and will wear an orange high visibility jacket so that he can be easily identified. At the same time an announcement will be made by public address system, provided that it is working asking everyone to leave all the marquees by the nearest exit. Please follow any instructions given by your zone controller as electrical systems may be effected. For Zone 1, where there are few staff, the zone controller will contact the sound desk, get the music turned off and the house lights put on. He will then proceed to main stage and make an announcement from there. Security staff will proceed to the marquee and clear the area and ensure that no-one re-enters.. For zones 2 and 3, you will be asked to stop serving, move to the customer side of the bar, and help to encourage everyone to leave the marquees. As you reach a fire exit, you should ensure that no-one re-enters.. For zone 4, you should leave the inner compound or staff rest area and move towards the glasses area and help to encourage everyone to leave and ensure nobody re-enters. Do not attempt to collect your belongings from the campsite.. If you have been asked to evacuate, please stay calm and follow the above procedure. Do not worry about the tills behind bars or stop to collect any belongings.. At the same time, the person responsible for the concessions will contact all the vendors and ensure that they switch off any gas appliances and stop serving.. The Festival Organiser will proceed to the main entrance to await the arrival of the Emergency Services, who will then take total control and issue further instructions. Customers and staff should be kept within the perimeter fence unless or until you have instructions to completely clear the site area.. If you should discover a fire report it immediately to your manager. Do not attempt to deal with fire unless it blocks your safe exit..
Children are allowed in the beer marquees provided that they are accompanied by an adult. Drugs are an ever-increasing problem in society, whether cannabis joints or syringes. Please be aware of the state of the person you are serving. Awareness is needed by all staff to maintain our zero tolerance stance and the good name of the Peterborough CAMRA Beer Festival. You should not deal with confrontations, complaints and the like. Inform your bar manager or a nearby member of the security team in such cases. Under-age drinking is a major issue that is being actively investigated by the authorities. Although some weeding out is done at the gate, it is your responsibility to ensure that minors do not get alcohol. You must never sell to anyone under 18 or to anyone you believe is buying for someone under 18. The "buck stops" with you under the new law and is dealt with by an £80 fine. If in any doubt about a person's age, ask for ID in the form of a passport, picture driving licence or national picture proof of age card (Portman card). With six bars on site, it is essential that everyone adheres strictly to this to prevent youngsters "bar hopping" until they find someone willing to serve them. Serving someone who is drunk now carries the same penalties as the above. You must use common sense to decide if someone is drunk. If you think someone has had enough and should not be served any more, advise your bar manager. Please be constantly vigilant while at the festival. If you see anything that "isn't right", no matter how small it may seem, report it to your bar manager or one of the security team. With your help we can ensure that this year's festival is as safe, pleasant, enjoyable and fun as always.
As far as the law goes, beer in open glasses is to be treated exactly the same as food. You are required to serve it in a safe and hygienic manner. Holding glasses by the rim is the equivalent of putting your thumb in the food on a plate. Please make sure your hands, hair and clothing are clean when working behind bars and in the glasses tent. Do not lick your fingers or pick your nose while working behind a bar. You must not smoke or eat food behind the bar at any time. If you go for a cigarette, go to the toilet or to eat, please wash your hands on your return to bars or glasses tent. Hand washing facilities are available behind all bars and the glasses tent. It is a good idea to bring a spare top to change into as it can be hot and sweaty, and beer can easily be spilt. For staff staying on site, there is a shower block from the start of the set up. Bar managers are aware of the hygiene rules and can advise you if you are in doubt.
May 2019

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