The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) has said that twice as many women have tried real ale compared to last year.

Research commissioned by the group found that 30% of women surveyed said they had tried real ale, compared to 16% in the same survey in 2008.

CAMRA, the organisers of this week's Great British Beer Festival (August 4-8), documented in 2008 why women drinkers had never tried real ale.

It said 13% did not know where to start, 12% did not know what real ale is, 12% thought real ale would be too bitter, and 9% did not like the appeal of beer in general.

Louise Ashworth, CAMRA Head of Marketing, said: "CAMRA's efforts to convince women that real ale is not just for the boys are paying off… Last year we launched the Girls Guide to the Great British Beer Festival because we were concerned that women drinkers were missing out on the pleasures of our national drink."

At the festival this year, beer writer and tutor Melissa Cole will be taking female drinkers round the Festival in Girl's Guide-themed tours to develop upon these findings.

Cole said: "It's really gratifying to see more and more women discovering the delights of real ale… the reason they haven't been doing so over the last few decades is a combination of macho marketing, poor product information and urban myths."