Page 1

145 February/March 09

FREE, PLEASE TAKE ONE

Pub of the Year 2009


CAMPAIGNING

The CAMRA Member’s Weekend and AGM Eastbourne Winter Garden Preparation is now well under way for the 2009 CAMRA Members’ Weekend and AGM, which will be held at the Eastbourne Winter Garden, and will commence on Friday 17 April and end mid-afternoon on Sunday 19 April 2009. The weekend is open to all CAMRA members, and is an opportunity for them to discuss future CAMRA policy and direction, as well as a chance to socialize with friends and other CAMRA members. The weekend gives members the opportunity to: • Review what has been happening at branch, regional and national level over the past year • Have a say in reviewing campaigning themes and forming policy • Hear guest speakers on issues related to beer, brewing and key campaigns • Meet up with CAMRA members from around the country, National Executive and HQ staff members • Discuss ideas regarding future CAMRA campaigns in workshops, policy discussion groups and seminars • Enjoy a few beers at the Members' bar, as a members’ beer festival is put on in conjunction with the AGM • Visit pubs in Eastbourne and the surrounding areas • Visit local breweries on organised trips

www.real-ale.org.uk

Trips are still in the planning stage, but are proposed to include trips to several of the local breweries in the area including Harvey’s Brewery in Lewes, Dark Star Brewery at Ansty; 1648 Brewery at East Hoathly; Whites Brewery at Bexhill and Beachy Head Brewery at East Dean. Pub Crawls are also planned around Eastbourne (Town Centre and Old Town), and in Lewes and Hastings. Several pubs in Eastbourne are planning to put on mini beer festivals for the weekend. It is now possible to pre-register to attend the Members’ Weekend by going online to the CAMRA website www.camra.org.uk , and following the link from the Members’ Weekend pages. Further information about the weekend can also be found in ‘What’s Brewing’ and online, and there will be regular updates in the run up to the weekend. All CAMRA members are welcome to attend, whether this is their first or fifteenth Members’ Weekend, and it promises to be an enjoyable and informative few days. The Members Weekend is just one of the benefits of joining CAMRA, so if you are not a member, why not join today by completing the form in this magazine, or by going on-line to www.camra.org.uk and clicking on ‘Join Us’.

Official Sponsor of the 2009 Member’s Weekend

3


CAMPAIGNING

The CAMRA Member’s Weekend and AGM Eastbourne Winter Garden Preparation is now well under way for the 2009 CAMRA Members’ Weekend and AGM, which will be held at the Eastbourne Winter Garden, and will commence on Friday 17 April and end mid-afternoon on Sunday 19 April 2009. The weekend is open to all CAMRA members, and is an opportunity for them to discuss future CAMRA policy and direction, as well as a chance to socialize with friends and other CAMRA members. The weekend gives members the opportunity to: • Review what has been happening at branch, regional and national level over the past year • Have a say in reviewing campaigning themes and forming policy • Hear guest speakers on issues related to beer, brewing and key campaigns • Meet up with CAMRA members from around the country, National Executive and HQ staff members • Discuss ideas regarding future CAMRA campaigns in workshops, policy discussion groups and seminars • Enjoy a few beers at the Members' bar, as a members’ beer festival is put on in conjunction with the AGM • Visit pubs in Eastbourne and the surrounding areas • Visit local breweries on organised trips

www.real-ale.org.uk

Trips are still in the planning stage, but are proposed to include trips to several of the local breweries in the area including Harvey’s Brewery in Lewes, Dark Star Brewery at Ansty; 1648 Brewery at East Hoathly; Whites Brewery at Bexhill and Beachy Head Brewery at East Dean. Pub Crawls are also planned around Eastbourne (Town Centre and Old Town), and in Lewes and Hastings. Several pubs in Eastbourne are planning to put on mini beer festivals for the weekend. It is now possible to pre-register to attend the Members’ Weekend by going online to the CAMRA website www.camra.org.uk , and following the link from the Members’ Weekend pages. Further information about the weekend can also be found in ‘What’s Brewing’ and online, and there will be regular updates in the run up to the weekend. All CAMRA members are welcome to attend, whether this is their first or fifteenth Members’ Weekend, and it promises to be an enjoyable and informative few days. The Members Weekend is just one of the benefits of joining CAMRA, so if you are not a member, why not join today by completing the form in this magazine, or by going on-line to www.camra.org.uk and clicking on ‘Join Us’.

Official Sponsor of the 2009 Member’s Weekend

3


ADVERTISEMENTS

CHAIRMAN’S CORNER

Chairman’s Corner Welcome to our first edition of 2009. We shall have to wait and see if the predicted doom and gloom downturn from the crashing of our economy has a major effect on the pub trade. All indications are sadly that it will! An interesting but not very amusing item was broadcast on one of our local news channels very recently at the beginning of the New Year. Apparently in Bedford the local licensing authorities were chastising the local Wetherspoons pub for selling beer at a ‘sale’ price of 99p a pint. They alleged Wetherspoons were breaking a local understanding that a minimum price of £1-50 would be charged in any pub in Bedford for a pint. Two things come to mind here. First I was not aware that licensing officials were empowered to set up cartels to set the price of beer locally, whether in pubs or elsewhere that can sell alcohol. Secondly, if the said officials are so concerned about beer being undersold at the expense of other pubs, then why don’t they make an almighty outcry at the price the supermarkets are still selling cheaper beer - cos they are the ones who grant them a licence to sell it! Me’ thinks there is some unsavoury taste to this protest by maybe some other publicans (and I would not blame them for doing so) but they live with that all year. Anyway the beer at the centre of the dispute is Greene King IPA, so no great alarm there. I’ll be nipping

4

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

along to my local ‘Spoons’ for a gander with a pound coin in my pocket just in case I get tempted. Elsewhere the festive season seems to have gone through with a much more subdued atmosphere than recent years. I did manage to pay a visit to some of our Fenland town pubs in Chatteris and March. The little star also came along and shone down on The Beehive, next to Asda in Peterborough that re-opened in December. Investigations are needed as no real ale appeared to be on when I poked my head round the door and I was too busy rushing to stock up with the cheap rubbish from u-know who. Wonder how many will think I’m being serious! Our newsletter will soon be publishing its 150th edition. Before then I intend on re-appraising our distribution to ensure that we are covering the area with an even spread, and that we are not wasting our resources by printing to many. All distributors will be contacted in the next few weeks to assess their supplies of BAE. I still have a number of 2009 Good Beer Guides for sale to members at a reduced price – yup we’re having a Sale as well! Best wishes for the next twelve months and my quest to get out meeting as many of you as possible has not diminished. Good luck to the sub-branch in Rutland after their successful start last year, I hope 2009 sees them continue so. Cheers David Murray Branch Chairman

5


ADVERTISEMENTS

CHAIRMAN’S CORNER

Chairman’s Corner Welcome to our first edition of 2009. We shall have to wait and see if the predicted doom and gloom downturn from the crashing of our economy has a major effect on the pub trade. All indications are sadly that it will! An interesting but not very amusing item was broadcast on one of our local news channels very recently at the beginning of the New Year. Apparently in Bedford the local licensing authorities were chastising the local Wetherspoons pub for selling beer at a ‘sale’ price of 99p a pint. They alleged Wetherspoons were breaking a local understanding that a minimum price of £1-50 would be charged in any pub in Bedford for a pint. Two things come to mind here. First I was not aware that licensing officials were empowered to set up cartels to set the price of beer locally, whether in pubs or elsewhere that can sell alcohol. Secondly, if the said officials are so concerned about beer being undersold at the expense of other pubs, then why don’t they make an almighty outcry at the price the supermarkets are still selling cheaper beer - cos they are the ones who grant them a licence to sell it! Me’ thinks there is some unsavoury taste to this protest by maybe some other publicans (and I would not blame them for doing so) but they live with that all year. Anyway the beer at the centre of the dispute is Greene King IPA, so no great alarm there. I’ll be nipping

4

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

along to my local ‘Spoons’ for a gander with a pound coin in my pocket just in case I get tempted. Elsewhere the festive season seems to have gone through with a much more subdued atmosphere than recent years. I did manage to pay a visit to some of our Fenland town pubs in Chatteris and March. The little star also came along and shone down on The Beehive, next to Asda in Peterborough that re-opened in December. Investigations are needed as no real ale appeared to be on when I poked my head round the door and I was too busy rushing to stock up with the cheap rubbish from u-know who. Wonder how many will think I’m being serious! Our newsletter will soon be publishing its 150th edition. Before then I intend on re-appraising our distribution to ensure that we are covering the area with an even spread, and that we are not wasting our resources by printing to many. All distributors will be contacted in the next few weeks to assess their supplies of BAE. I still have a number of 2009 Good Beer Guides for sale to members at a reduced price – yup we’re having a Sale as well! Best wishes for the next twelve months and my quest to get out meeting as many of you as possible has not diminished. Good luck to the sub-branch in Rutland after their successful start last year, I hope 2009 sees them continue so. Cheers David Murray Branch Chairman

5


DIARY DATES

ADVERTISEMENTS

Diary Dates

Selected Beer Festivals

February Thu 12th Branch Committee Meeting at the Cherry Tree, Oundle Road, 8.30pm

FEBRUARY Mon 9th – Sun 15th Trafford Arms, Norwich, Valentines Beer Festival, approx 60 Real Ales & ciders

Thu 19th POTY2009 Presentation to the Jolly Brewer, Stamford (NB New Date). Bus departs Brewery Tap 7.30pm, returning by 11pm, cost £5. Mon 23rd 3rd Annual Pie & Pint Night at the Plough, Greetham. Bus departs Brewery Tap 7pm returning by 11pm, cost £11 to include meal. Sat 28th Tour of Sheffield Upper Don Valley Pubs by train, departing Peterborough at 9am and returning by 9pm. Cost £20 if advance booked, contact Bram for details. MARCH Tue 10th Branch Committee Meeting at the Dragon,Werrington 8.30pm Sat 14th March Madness Mystery Tour by bus (times and prices tba) Sat 14th Heritage Pub Trip by train to Leek and either Macclesfield or Stoke-onTrent. Contact Mick Slaughter if interested for further details. APRIL Sat 4th Breweriana Collectors Fair, Coal Heavers Arms, from noon. Mon 6th – Mon 13th National Cask Ales Week Wed 15th Branch Committee Meeting 8.30pm (central venue tba) Fri 17th – Sun 19th CAMRA Members Weekend & AGM, Eastbourne Winter Gardens Please contact John Hunt for bookings or further details, except where stated otherwise. 6

(CAMRA events shown in bold)

MARCH Thu 5th – Sat 7th 33rd Loughborough Beer Festival, approx 60 real ales, plus cider & perry. Wed 11th – Sat 14th Leicester Beer Festival (see poster in this issue for details) Fri 13th & Sat 14th Hitchin Beer & Cider Festival, Hitchin Town Hall Wed 18th – Fri 20th London Drinker Beer & Cider Festival, Camden Centre, Bidborough Street Thu 19th – Sat 21st St Neots ‘Booze on the Ouse’ Beer Festival (see poster in this issue for details) APRIL Thu 9th – Mon 13th Charters Easter Beer Festival, approx 50 real ales.

132 Great Whyte Ramsey PE26 1HS

Fri 10th – Mon 13th Green Man, Stamford, Easter Beer Festival, approx 40 real ales.

Keith and Jenny offer a warm welcome to all old and new customers.

Serving a selection of Real Ales: Abbott Ale, Wells Bombardier, Black Sheep Bitter, Wychwood Hobgoblin

Fri 10th – Mon 13th Harboro’ Hotel, Melton Mowbray, Easter Beer Festival, approx 30 real ales. PLEASE BOOK EARLY FOR TRIPS TO AVOID DISAPPOINTMENT

Live Music

Mick Slaughter is on 01733 390598 John Hunt is on 01406 330453 Paul Brammer is on 07922 604988 Full details of all meetings and socials are posted on our website as soon as details are known. It’s the best way to ensure that you do not miss out.

info@real-ale.org.uk

Large Beer Garden

01487 812597 www.real-ale.org.uk

7


DIARY DATES

ADVERTISEMENTS

Diary Dates

Selected Beer Festivals

February Thu 12th Branch Committee Meeting at the Cherry Tree, Oundle Road, 8.30pm

FEBRUARY Mon 9th – Sun 15th Trafford Arms, Norwich, Valentines Beer Festival, approx 60 Real Ales & ciders

Thu 19th POTY2009 Presentation to the Jolly Brewer, Stamford (NB New Date). Bus departs Brewery Tap 7.30pm, returning by 11pm, cost £5. Mon 23rd 3rd Annual Pie & Pint Night at the Plough, Greetham. Bus departs Brewery Tap 7pm returning by 11pm, cost £11 to include meal. Sat 28th Tour of Sheffield Upper Don Valley Pubs by train, departing Peterborough at 9am and returning by 9pm. Cost £20 if advance booked, contact Bram for details. MARCH Tue 10th Branch Committee Meeting at the Dragon,Werrington 8.30pm Sat 14th March Madness Mystery Tour by bus (times and prices tba) Sat 14th Heritage Pub Trip by train to Leek and either Macclesfield or Stoke-onTrent. Contact Mick Slaughter if interested for further details. APRIL Sat 4th Breweriana Collectors Fair, Coal Heavers Arms, from noon. Mon 6th – Mon 13th National Cask Ales Week Wed 15th Branch Committee Meeting 8.30pm (central venue tba) Fri 17th – Sun 19th CAMRA Members Weekend & AGM, Eastbourne Winter Gardens Please contact John Hunt for bookings or further details, except where stated otherwise. 6

(CAMRA events shown in bold)

MARCH Thu 5th – Sat 7th 33rd Loughborough Beer Festival, approx 60 real ales, plus cider & perry. Wed 11th – Sat 14th Leicester Beer Festival (see poster in this issue for details) Fri 13th & Sat 14th Hitchin Beer & Cider Festival, Hitchin Town Hall Wed 18th – Fri 20th London Drinker Beer & Cider Festival, Camden Centre, Bidborough Street Thu 19th – Sat 21st St Neots ‘Booze on the Ouse’ Beer Festival (see poster in this issue for details) APRIL Thu 9th – Mon 13th Charters Easter Beer Festival, approx 50 real ales.

132 Great Whyte Ramsey PE26 1HS

Fri 10th – Mon 13th Green Man, Stamford, Easter Beer Festival, approx 40 real ales.

Keith and Jenny offer a warm welcome to all old and new customers.

Serving a selection of Real Ales: Abbott Ale, Wells Bombardier, Black Sheep Bitter, Wychwood Hobgoblin

Fri 10th – Mon 13th Harboro’ Hotel, Melton Mowbray, Easter Beer Festival, approx 30 real ales. PLEASE BOOK EARLY FOR TRIPS TO AVOID DISAPPOINTMENT

Live Music

Mick Slaughter is on 01733 390598 John Hunt is on 01406 330453 Paul Brammer is on 07922 604988 Full details of all meetings and socials are posted on our website as soon as details are known. It’s the best way to ensure that you do not miss out.

info@real-ale.org.uk

Large Beer Garden

01487 812597 www.real-ale.org.uk

7


A FEW WORDS FROM THE EDITOR

A FEW WORDS FROM THE EDITOR

Past, Present & Future Hello readers, and a very belated Happy New Year to you all. I wonder how many of you have managed to get thus far into 2009 with your resolutions still intact? I’m not one for making any myself, but it was amusingly suggested to me that perhaps I ought to resolve to “change the record mate” with regard to my editorial messages? So OK, here we go then, with the extended play remix version… A little short of four decades ago, Michael Hardman and his friends returned from a fishing holiday in Ireland and founded the Campaign for the Revitalisation of Ale, and CAMRA, Britain’s most successful consumer organization was born. At this time, the so called ‘Big Six’ dominated much of the nations brewing, although there were more than 100 regional family breweries in operation and a solitary 4 brew pubs. The initial aims of the campaign were to halt the onslaught of Tankard or Red Barrel being foisted upon our then 80,000 pubs in preference to ‘real ale’. Fast-forward to the present day, and the scenario has changed. Very little brewing of real ale is now undertaken by the original bullyboys, who have now become global giants more interested in huge selling lager brands. Greene King & Marstons have become powerful national leaders to replace them though, and only half of the other regional breweries remain in operation. As for the 4 brew pubs, well there are now more than a hundred among nearly 600 micro-breweries across the land, all fighting 8

for a place in an ever-decreasing market as the majority of the now 60,000 pubs are tied to the modern day pubcos. Recent surveys suggest that the tied house system is killing the pub trade, with a reported 39 now closing every week unable to compete with the supermarkets due to the prices charged for beer from their landlords. The rate of pub closures is now nearly twenty times greater than just 4 years ago, and forecasters predict that fewer than half of Britain’s pubs will still be open in just ten years time.

So what of the future then? Will I still be able to find a quiet back street pub to enjoy my retirement in? Will I still be able to afford a few pints in a few years time if the government keeps hiking up the duty? Will enough of these wonderful micro-brewers survive the recession to continue producing wonderfully hoppy beers, and will I be able to find them anywhere other than a beer festival? Well I’m no fortune teller, just a beer loving realist who recognises that if things carry on the way they are, I’d best get the home brew kit out of retirement! Cheers Bram

Good Selection Of Real Ales Beer Garden With Childrens Play Area Open All Day Friday Saturday Sunday Good Food Available - Regular BBQ’S Separate Lounge & Bar Area, Snug Room Pool Table Juke Box Darts SKY TV Quiz Machine In Bar

JD Wetherspoons caused an outcry when they announced their 99p pint, but you have to ask yourself this. If a chain of just over 700 pubs can afford to cut their prices, why not Punch or Enterprise Inns who collectively own around a quarter of our pubs? The latter actually allow their tenants to have local beers delivered direct to the pub, which is fantastic news, so why then do they need to charge their tenants an additional 40% on what they are paying for it? Does this really make economic sense when the supermarkets are literally giving the stuff away? Another aspect of these austere times is the property market, and pubcos have been off-loading under achieving properties from their portfolios to balance the books. So if Enterprise cannot find a mug to take on a poor performer, why not sell it to someone who thinks they can make a go of it then? No, of course not, that would create competition, so the pub gets sold with a covenant restricting it from being used as a pub in the future, and another one bites the dust.

info@real-ale.org.uk

6 Foot Large Screen, Large Car Park Regular Live Music Saturday Evenings

Cambridge Bitter 3.8%

Gold Award Champion Bitter of Britain 2006 Available all year round:

SEASONAL ALES Thin Ice 4.7% Jan/Feb Old Wagg 4.0% March/April Double Swan 4.5% May/June Mad Dog 4.4% July/Aug Barleymead 4.8% Sept/Oct Old Black Shuck 4.5% Nov Snickalmas 5.0% Wenceslas Winter Warmer 7.5% Dec

North Brink Brewery, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire www.real-ale.org.uk

Tel: 01945 583160 9


A FEW WORDS FROM THE EDITOR

A FEW WORDS FROM THE EDITOR

Past, Present & Future Hello readers, and a very belated Happy New Year to you all. I wonder how many of you have managed to get thus far into 2009 with your resolutions still intact? I’m not one for making any myself, but it was amusingly suggested to me that perhaps I ought to resolve to “change the record mate” with regard to my editorial messages? So OK, here we go then, with the extended play remix version… A little short of four decades ago, Michael Hardman and his friends returned from a fishing holiday in Ireland and founded the Campaign for the Revitalisation of Ale, and CAMRA, Britain’s most successful consumer organization was born. At this time, the so called ‘Big Six’ dominated much of the nations brewing, although there were more than 100 regional family breweries in operation and a solitary 4 brew pubs. The initial aims of the campaign were to halt the onslaught of Tankard or Red Barrel being foisted upon our then 80,000 pubs in preference to ‘real ale’. Fast-forward to the present day, and the scenario has changed. Very little brewing of real ale is now undertaken by the original bullyboys, who have now become global giants more interested in huge selling lager brands. Greene King & Marstons have become powerful national leaders to replace them though, and only half of the other regional breweries remain in operation. As for the 4 brew pubs, well there are now more than a hundred among nearly 600 micro-breweries across the land, all fighting 8

for a place in an ever-decreasing market as the majority of the now 60,000 pubs are tied to the modern day pubcos. Recent surveys suggest that the tied house system is killing the pub trade, with a reported 39 now closing every week unable to compete with the supermarkets due to the prices charged for beer from their landlords. The rate of pub closures is now nearly twenty times greater than just 4 years ago, and forecasters predict that fewer than half of Britain’s pubs will still be open in just ten years time.

So what of the future then? Will I still be able to find a quiet back street pub to enjoy my retirement in? Will I still be able to afford a few pints in a few years time if the government keeps hiking up the duty? Will enough of these wonderful micro-brewers survive the recession to continue producing wonderfully hoppy beers, and will I be able to find them anywhere other than a beer festival? Well I’m no fortune teller, just a beer loving realist who recognises that if things carry on the way they are, I’d best get the home brew kit out of retirement! Cheers Bram

Good Selection Of Real Ales Beer Garden With Childrens Play Area Open All Day Friday Saturday Sunday Good Food Available - Regular BBQ’S Separate Lounge & Bar Area, Snug Room Pool Table Juke Box Darts SKY TV Quiz Machine In Bar

JD Wetherspoons caused an outcry when they announced their 99p pint, but you have to ask yourself this. If a chain of just over 700 pubs can afford to cut their prices, why not Punch or Enterprise Inns who collectively own around a quarter of our pubs? The latter actually allow their tenants to have local beers delivered direct to the pub, which is fantastic news, so why then do they need to charge their tenants an additional 40% on what they are paying for it? Does this really make economic sense when the supermarkets are literally giving the stuff away? Another aspect of these austere times is the property market, and pubcos have been off-loading under achieving properties from their portfolios to balance the books. So if Enterprise cannot find a mug to take on a poor performer, why not sell it to someone who thinks they can make a go of it then? No, of course not, that would create competition, so the pub gets sold with a covenant restricting it from being used as a pub in the future, and another one bites the dust.

info@real-ale.org.uk

6 Foot Large Screen, Large Car Park Regular Live Music Saturday Evenings

Cambridge Bitter 3.8%

Gold Award Champion Bitter of Britain 2006 Available all year round:

SEASONAL ALES Thin Ice 4.7% Jan/Feb Old Wagg 4.0% March/April Double Swan 4.5% May/June Mad Dog 4.4% July/Aug Barleymead 4.8% Sept/Oct Old Black Shuck 4.5% Nov Snickalmas 5.0% Wenceslas Winter Warmer 7.5% Dec

North Brink Brewery, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire www.real-ale.org.uk

Tel: 01945 583160 9


SMALL BEER

SMALL BEER

Small Beer More Awards for Oakham Ales Oakham Ales Attila, which is categorised as a barley wine due to its strength, sweetness and high hop rate was victorious in the CAMRA Winter Ales Festival held in Manchester. Having won the Dudley Winter Ales Festival back in November 2008, Oakham’s 7.5 % ABV beer was put through to the finals where it was up against tough competition with some excellent breweries and beers featured. A panel of CAMRA experts and leading beer writers judged the beers and proclaimed Attila the winner on the Thursday of the event. This prestigious award also puts them through to the finals of the Champion Beer of Britain Competition that will be held in August 2009 at the Great British Beer Festival at Earls Court in London. The news of their triumph was well received at the brewery with Attila being the favourite of many of the staff. The news also came shortly after the already multi-award winning brewery collected 6 awards at the SIBA East Region Competition 2009 with their beers Bishops Farewell winning overall, Inferno overall runner-up and Oblivion and Hawse Buckler gaining silver and bronze awards in their categories. Heroes & Villains With the country deep into the worst recession many of us can remember, it’s a tough time for the pub trade, especially at this time of the year. No surprises then when some of the major players in the game announced huge inflation busting price increases to cover their costs! Scottish & 10

Axe the Beer Tax

Newcastle, Diageo & InBev have all stuck two fingers up to their customers with price hikes that could see as much as 20p added to the average pint. With the chancellor expected to raise duty yet again in his March budget, things are looking grim.

Finally, if you have had just about enough of Mr Darling and his silly games, why not let your local MP know just how you feel? Register now at: www.axethebeertax.com

So a pat on the back for some of the usual culprits then, who have all decided to absorb these price increases in a bid to give their customers some respite. Marston’s have promised to hold prices for the remainder of the year to all their 1,700 tenants and lessees; Adnams, despite announcing a drop of 6% in beer sales on the same period last year have followed suit, while the mighty Greene King have said they have no plans to stage price increases. GK have also announced their disappointment with the JD Wetherspoons chain selling their IPA as a ‘loss leader’ at just 99p per pint, arguing that it will backfire against the trades battle with the supermarkets. Award winning chef Marco Pierre White has other ideas though, and plans to raise the cost of beer to a massive £5 a pint at his Yew Tree Inn in Berkshire. Sometimes, it makes you wonder? Probably… The Coal Heaver’s Arms on Park Street have decided to change their token house lager offering. By the time this issue of BAE hits the streets, they will have changed the lager from Czech Budvar to a craft lager brewed in Buxton by Taddington brewery. The lager will be Moravka a 4.4% pilsener style unpasteurised lager, it is a clean tasting beer, slightly maltier than Budvar. The beer is made with natural ingredients and Zotac hops from northern Bohemia. Could this be Britain's best tasting lager?

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

11


SMALL BEER

SMALL BEER

Small Beer More Awards for Oakham Ales Oakham Ales Attila, which is categorised as a barley wine due to its strength, sweetness and high hop rate was victorious in the CAMRA Winter Ales Festival held in Manchester. Having won the Dudley Winter Ales Festival back in November 2008, Oakham’s 7.5 % ABV beer was put through to the finals where it was up against tough competition with some excellent breweries and beers featured. A panel of CAMRA experts and leading beer writers judged the beers and proclaimed Attila the winner on the Thursday of the event. This prestigious award also puts them through to the finals of the Champion Beer of Britain Competition that will be held in August 2009 at the Great British Beer Festival at Earls Court in London. The news of their triumph was well received at the brewery with Attila being the favourite of many of the staff. The news also came shortly after the already multi-award winning brewery collected 6 awards at the SIBA East Region Competition 2009 with their beers Bishops Farewell winning overall, Inferno overall runner-up and Oblivion and Hawse Buckler gaining silver and bronze awards in their categories. Heroes & Villains With the country deep into the worst recession many of us can remember, it’s a tough time for the pub trade, especially at this time of the year. No surprises then when some of the major players in the game announced huge inflation busting price increases to cover their costs! Scottish & 10

Axe the Beer Tax

Newcastle, Diageo & InBev have all stuck two fingers up to their customers with price hikes that could see as much as 20p added to the average pint. With the chancellor expected to raise duty yet again in his March budget, things are looking grim.

Finally, if you have had just about enough of Mr Darling and his silly games, why not let your local MP know just how you feel? Register now at: www.axethebeertax.com

So a pat on the back for some of the usual culprits then, who have all decided to absorb these price increases in a bid to give their customers some respite. Marston’s have promised to hold prices for the remainder of the year to all their 1,700 tenants and lessees; Adnams, despite announcing a drop of 6% in beer sales on the same period last year have followed suit, while the mighty Greene King have said they have no plans to stage price increases. GK have also announced their disappointment with the JD Wetherspoons chain selling their IPA as a ‘loss leader’ at just 99p per pint, arguing that it will backfire against the trades battle with the supermarkets. Award winning chef Marco Pierre White has other ideas though, and plans to raise the cost of beer to a massive £5 a pint at his Yew Tree Inn in Berkshire. Sometimes, it makes you wonder? Probably… The Coal Heaver’s Arms on Park Street have decided to change their token house lager offering. By the time this issue of BAE hits the streets, they will have changed the lager from Czech Budvar to a craft lager brewed in Buxton by Taddington brewery. The lager will be Moravka a 4.4% pilsener style unpasteurised lager, it is a clean tasting beer, slightly maltier than Budvar. The beer is made with natural ingredients and Zotac hops from northern Bohemia. Could this be Britain's best tasting lager?

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

11


PUB NEWS

PUB NEWS

Pub News Around ‘Ere Pubs Closed As usual we shall start with all that is wrong with the world. Our local pubs continue to have a hard time with several more temporarily disappearing from view. The news that the Chequers in Orton Wistow had closed its doors just before Christmas was received with some sadness. Being the only pub serving this particular enclave of the Ortons you'd think that a captive audience of willing locals would be on hand to give support to what is effectively a community local. The Evening Telegraph reported just before Christmas that the owners, Punch Taverns are 'trying to resolve some issues with the licensees'. I think it a fairly safe bet the pub will reopen, but when is anyone's guess. The Fox & Hounds in Longthorpe closed at about the same time as the Chequers. The situation with this pub is slightly different as the actual owning company, Orchid went into administration. In 2006 the group took over about 300 pubs from Punch and with the present problems many of them have been returned to the fold, the Fox & Hounds included. A spokesman for Punch said that the pub has had to be closed for a short time so they can get their systems in place with the existing staff being paid for the transition period. Hopefully by the time you read this all should be up and running. Goodbarns Yard on the east of the city is up for rent and is not currently trading. All information gratefully received.

Pubs continue to change hands In Eastrea we have new hosts Richard and Lesley Holland in charge at the Nag's Head. Not wanting to disturb too much at this pleasant country boozer they are continuing with food and theme nights. So if you fancy fish & chip suppers, race nights and quizzes complimented with lashings of Oakham ales then just follow the road between Whittlesey and March and you can't go far wrong. The Westwood in Mayor's Walk has new people behind the bar in the form of Dave & Anita West who hail from Somerset. They are both keen and enthusiastic which must be a good start. Just before Christmas they were looking forward to holding a charity raffle and had other ideas in the pipeline. As I'm not sure if real ale is available I can't comment further but if they put the same commitment into the beers as they do into other facets of the business all should be well. The Spade & Shovel in Eye is a welcoming pub with a bar, lounge and a collection of regulars to be proud of. At the time of writing there are scant details but reports of decent beer and a friendly landlord are encouraging.

Whittlesey Market Place The saga of the George in Whittlesey continues to twist and turn its way through the local conscience like a twisty turny thing with no end. Who owns it, are they opening it again, is it closed forever? No doubt the truth will wind its way to the surface eventually but a recent bout of smoke and mirrors would have us believe that there is some difficulty about restoring the Georgian windows. Have Wetherspoons now thrown in the bar towel after meeting with an immovable town council planning department? We shall endeavour to keep you informed of developments. Stamford ingenuity Stamford landlord Rikki Crouch has taken the bold step of offering his customers a free meal if they spend £3 on drinks. What! Has the man misplaced his marbles? At first we might be forgiven for thinking that Mr Crouch of the well run Northfields has been affected by the long hours that are the domain of the hard pressed publican but it obviously makes commercial sense. If you can entice a few more feet across the threshold with cash to spend then it can only be a good thing. We wish him well. If you fancy taking advantage of this offer then why not include the pub on your itinerary when in the town. The pub can be found on Drift Road.

times change and so do pub owners and landlords and with a history like so many others its profits dwindled to nothing over time. When you're running a pub with the usual restrictive beer policy, high beer costs and high rent, profits can be an elusive mistress. The City Arms was eventually sold and became a Thai restaurant called unimaginatively Temple City. It is the lease on this building that is now up for grabs, not that you'd know from the outside. The venue is available through Nationwide Businesses Ltd (020 8763 1777) and is advertised as a restaurant but with no clues to its whereabouts, all very secretive. A restaurant can be opened as a pub with very little fuss as it is in the same planning category, a license would be needed for a restaurant just as a pub would, and as its been a pub previously the difficulties would be minimal I suspect. So now to the good news. The cost of taking over the lease is £1, primarily I think because they can't make enough money simply as a Thai restaurant and they want to offload it as quick as possible. But a pub has so many more possibilities especially when it’s a free house, which this would be. The yearly rent would be in the region of £13,000, which is about £250 a week, and the rates are about £3500 a year. Put simply, a bargain. All things lavatorial Winning awards is always a good thing and should be encouraged wherever possible.

Free House for Sale, £1 or nearest offer! The Ploughman in Werrington Centre has new hosts and rumours that real ale is available straight from the cask is a step in the right direction. The pub will eventually be demolished when the ever-expanding dominion of Tesco annexes its site sometime in the future. The pub will no doubt be rebuilt in a grand style to compliment the corporate distinctiveness of its overshadowing neighbour.

As there are so many pubs on the market, I have taken it upon myself to highlight one or two in the vain hope that one of our readers will take one on and make their fortunes! Many of you will remember the City Arms from several years ago. Once a thriving establishment with one or two real ales. But

The Loo of the Year Award seeks to reward those organisations who take care in the provision of areas in which to ablute or spend a penny. The overall winner was ASDA who obviously know a thing or two about this sort of area of customer satisfaction. Locally it was the Draper's Arms who were awarded a 5 star certificate, an award that Chris the manager is justly proud. Looking through the other 5 star Continued Overleaf....

12

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

13


PUB NEWS

PUB NEWS

Pub News Around ‘Ere Pubs Closed As usual we shall start with all that is wrong with the world. Our local pubs continue to have a hard time with several more temporarily disappearing from view. The news that the Chequers in Orton Wistow had closed its doors just before Christmas was received with some sadness. Being the only pub serving this particular enclave of the Ortons you'd think that a captive audience of willing locals would be on hand to give support to what is effectively a community local. The Evening Telegraph reported just before Christmas that the owners, Punch Taverns are 'trying to resolve some issues with the licensees'. I think it a fairly safe bet the pub will reopen, but when is anyone's guess. The Fox & Hounds in Longthorpe closed at about the same time as the Chequers. The situation with this pub is slightly different as the actual owning company, Orchid went into administration. In 2006 the group took over about 300 pubs from Punch and with the present problems many of them have been returned to the fold, the Fox & Hounds included. A spokesman for Punch said that the pub has had to be closed for a short time so they can get their systems in place with the existing staff being paid for the transition period. Hopefully by the time you read this all should be up and running. Goodbarns Yard on the east of the city is up for rent and is not currently trading. All information gratefully received.

Pubs continue to change hands In Eastrea we have new hosts Richard and Lesley Holland in charge at the Nag's Head. Not wanting to disturb too much at this pleasant country boozer they are continuing with food and theme nights. So if you fancy fish & chip suppers, race nights and quizzes complimented with lashings of Oakham ales then just follow the road between Whittlesey and March and you can't go far wrong. The Westwood in Mayor's Walk has new people behind the bar in the form of Dave & Anita West who hail from Somerset. They are both keen and enthusiastic which must be a good start. Just before Christmas they were looking forward to holding a charity raffle and had other ideas in the pipeline. As I'm not sure if real ale is available I can't comment further but if they put the same commitment into the beers as they do into other facets of the business all should be well. The Spade & Shovel in Eye is a welcoming pub with a bar, lounge and a collection of regulars to be proud of. At the time of writing there are scant details but reports of decent beer and a friendly landlord are encouraging.

Whittlesey Market Place The saga of the George in Whittlesey continues to twist and turn its way through the local conscience like a twisty turny thing with no end. Who owns it, are they opening it again, is it closed forever? No doubt the truth will wind its way to the surface eventually but a recent bout of smoke and mirrors would have us believe that there is some difficulty about restoring the Georgian windows. Have Wetherspoons now thrown in the bar towel after meeting with an immovable town council planning department? We shall endeavour to keep you informed of developments. Stamford ingenuity Stamford landlord Rikki Crouch has taken the bold step of offering his customers a free meal if they spend £3 on drinks. What! Has the man misplaced his marbles? At first we might be forgiven for thinking that Mr Crouch of the well run Northfields has been affected by the long hours that are the domain of the hard pressed publican but it obviously makes commercial sense. If you can entice a few more feet across the threshold with cash to spend then it can only be a good thing. We wish him well. If you fancy taking advantage of this offer then why not include the pub on your itinerary when in the town. The pub can be found on Drift Road.

times change and so do pub owners and landlords and with a history like so many others its profits dwindled to nothing over time. When you're running a pub with the usual restrictive beer policy, high beer costs and high rent, profits can be an elusive mistress. The City Arms was eventually sold and became a Thai restaurant called unimaginatively Temple City. It is the lease on this building that is now up for grabs, not that you'd know from the outside. The venue is available through Nationwide Businesses Ltd (020 8763 1777) and is advertised as a restaurant but with no clues to its whereabouts, all very secretive. A restaurant can be opened as a pub with very little fuss as it is in the same planning category, a license would be needed for a restaurant just as a pub would, and as its been a pub previously the difficulties would be minimal I suspect. So now to the good news. The cost of taking over the lease is £1, primarily I think because they can't make enough money simply as a Thai restaurant and they want to offload it as quick as possible. But a pub has so many more possibilities especially when it’s a free house, which this would be. The yearly rent would be in the region of £13,000, which is about £250 a week, and the rates are about £3500 a year. Put simply, a bargain. All things lavatorial Winning awards is always a good thing and should be encouraged wherever possible.

Free House for Sale, £1 or nearest offer! The Ploughman in Werrington Centre has new hosts and rumours that real ale is available straight from the cask is a step in the right direction. The pub will eventually be demolished when the ever-expanding dominion of Tesco annexes its site sometime in the future. The pub will no doubt be rebuilt in a grand style to compliment the corporate distinctiveness of its overshadowing neighbour.

As there are so many pubs on the market, I have taken it upon myself to highlight one or two in the vain hope that one of our readers will take one on and make their fortunes! Many of you will remember the City Arms from several years ago. Once a thriving establishment with one or two real ales. But

The Loo of the Year Award seeks to reward those organisations who take care in the provision of areas in which to ablute or spend a penny. The overall winner was ASDA who obviously know a thing or two about this sort of area of customer satisfaction. Locally it was the Draper's Arms who were awarded a 5 star certificate, an award that Chris the manager is justly proud. Looking through the other 5 star Continued Overleaf....

12

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

13


LOCALE

winners, every single pub mentioned is a Wetherspoons which seems to confirm what most of us have thought for several years now, namely good old JD's is the MacDonald’s (also 5 star winners) equivalent in the pub world! The rest of the pub scene seems to be sadly lacking in the provision of comfy, well-maintained and operational commodes. I'm sure there are both good and bad in our local hostelries and everything in between, some making an effort, others relishing in the provision of privies that resemble medieval plague pits. I recall when the Glass Onion was converted from the Fountain, the owner; a Mr Payne was very enthusiastic about the new revolutionary system of waterless urinals that had been installed in the gents. It was only some weeks later when drinking in the Hand & Heart that Mr Palmer our trusty landlord pointed out that he'd been operating his toilets completely without the use of water for some years, but this was entirely due to an unrectified problem with his U bend. So come on landlords, make the effort and provide us, the drinking (and toilet visiting) public with nice clean and serviceable bogs. It'll be worth every penny spent!

ADVERTISEMENTS

Calling All Publicans If the pub you run (or the pub you drink in) regularly sells a beer from a brewery within thirty miles of the pub then the pub could be up for a LocAle Award.

So. What is it all about? • Improving customer choice with local beers being available. • Local brewers being able to sell more beer allowing them to expand and benefit the local economy. • Fewer “beer miles” resulting in less road congestion and less pollution. • Increased tourism from increased local identity. • Thriving pubs due to returning customers. What else does the pub get out of it? • • • •

Window stickers Posters, leaflets and pump-clip crowners Publicity on our website Publicity in this magazine

If you think that your pub qualifies then please get in touch with John Rice on 07759 342702 or by email at: ricejohn@tiscali.co.uk

14

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

15


LOCALE

winners, every single pub mentioned is a Wetherspoons which seems to confirm what most of us have thought for several years now, namely good old JD's is the MacDonald’s (also 5 star winners) equivalent in the pub world! The rest of the pub scene seems to be sadly lacking in the provision of comfy, well-maintained and operational commodes. I'm sure there are both good and bad in our local hostelries and everything in between, some making an effort, others relishing in the provision of privies that resemble medieval plague pits. I recall when the Glass Onion was converted from the Fountain, the owner; a Mr Payne was very enthusiastic about the new revolutionary system of waterless urinals that had been installed in the gents. It was only some weeks later when drinking in the Hand & Heart that Mr Palmer our trusty landlord pointed out that he'd been operating his toilets completely without the use of water for some years, but this was entirely due to an unrectified problem with his U bend. So come on landlords, make the effort and provide us, the drinking (and toilet visiting) public with nice clean and serviceable bogs. It'll be worth every penny spent!

ADVERTISEMENTS

Calling All Publicans If the pub you run (or the pub you drink in) regularly sells a beer from a brewery within thirty miles of the pub then the pub could be up for a LocAle Award.

So. What is it all about? • Improving customer choice with local beers being available. • Local brewers being able to sell more beer allowing them to expand and benefit the local economy. • Fewer “beer miles” resulting in less road congestion and less pollution. • Increased tourism from increased local identity. • Thriving pubs due to returning customers. What else does the pub get out of it? • • • •

Window stickers Posters, leaflets and pump-clip crowners Publicity on our website Publicity in this magazine

If you think that your pub qualifies then please get in touch with John Rice on 07759 342702 or by email at: ricejohn@tiscali.co.uk

14

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

15


LETTER

AWARDS

Letter to the Editor Dear Editor Some weeks ago I read that there are proposals to stamp out the practice of binge drinking by prohibiting pubs from offering promotions, such as 2 for 1 drinks, free drinks for ladies and happy hours. While on the surface this may sound a commendable idea it could mean even harder trading conditions for small pubs on the outskirts of our city. Not being able to compete on price with our city centre pubs run by large companies such as Wetherspoons, Yates and their ilk the small local pub would be unable to offer such incentives as 20p off a pint on a Monday or a free bottle of wine when enjoying a meal for two as these would be seen as a 'promotional offer'. The British pub is already over burdened by legislation and if this new swathe of rules and regs is badly thought out then it will mean even harder times ahead for well run community pubs in our suburbs and villages.

(CAMRA are opposed to irresponsible drink promotions that encourage binge drinking, the type commonly associated with supermarkets and the pub chains you have already mentioned. It would indeed be crass stupidity for any form of government to over regulate struggling rural and community pubs further by restricting their trading options, but then again we all know that stupidity is one commodity our governments do have an abundance of! – Ed)

ARE YOU MISSING OUT? Only the beer-stained copy left? Get

Most of our drink related crime and anti-social behaviour is not centred on our outlying areas caused by Mr & Mrs Average having gone over the top on Chardonnay imbibed while taking up an introductory offer! Stop the irresponsible promotions by all means but there must be a safeguard to allow local pubs to compete and offer an incentive to keep some of the money away from our town centre. Bernard Miles

16

Jolly Brewer Pub of the Year

delivered to your door! For a year (6 issues) send a £1.80 cheque/PO payable to “Peterborough CAMRA” and your address to:Daryl Ling 19 Lidgate Close Orton Longueville Peterborough PE2 7ZA

info@real-ale.org.uk

When so many pubs are having a hard time its good to know that some pubs are bucking the trend and thriving. The Jolly Brewer in Stamford is one such pub and I have great pleasure in announcing that our local members have voted it Pub of the Year for 2009. Jill & Dean have been at the pub for 3 years now and in that time they have taken the pub to new heights of perfection. The pub is owned by Admiral Taverns and over many years the pub has had a variety of landlords, many of them indifferent to the virtues of real ale. Admiral have been very lucky to have found Jill & Dean to look after this superb old pub and are obviously encouraging them. The choice of ales on offer has been wide ranging and has included Sharpe's, Oakham, Tydd Steam and Cottage, all of which appear in perfect

www.real-ale.org.uk

condition. They could of course have just chosen beers that were very ordinary but Dean knows a thing or two about real ale and chooses what he fancies which is obviously a recipe for success. It isn't just beer that makes a good pub though. The food on offer is very popular with all who try it and the chef is to be found beavering away behind the scenes. Add to this their support for beer festivals, a variety of sporting events including Push Penny and we have a pub worthy of an award. So I'd like to congratulate Jill & Dean for achieving Pub of the Year and wish them all the best for the future and I hope they will continue to provide what their customers want, a fantastic pub. Steve Williams Pubs Office 17


LETTER

AWARDS

Letter to the Editor Dear Editor Some weeks ago I read that there are proposals to stamp out the practice of binge drinking by prohibiting pubs from offering promotions, such as 2 for 1 drinks, free drinks for ladies and happy hours. While on the surface this may sound a commendable idea it could mean even harder trading conditions for small pubs on the outskirts of our city. Not being able to compete on price with our city centre pubs run by large companies such as Wetherspoons, Yates and their ilk the small local pub would be unable to offer such incentives as 20p off a pint on a Monday or a free bottle of wine when enjoying a meal for two as these would be seen as a 'promotional offer'. The British pub is already over burdened by legislation and if this new swathe of rules and regs is badly thought out then it will mean even harder times ahead for well run community pubs in our suburbs and villages.

(CAMRA are opposed to irresponsible drink promotions that encourage binge drinking, the type commonly associated with supermarkets and the pub chains you have already mentioned. It would indeed be crass stupidity for any form of government to over regulate struggling rural and community pubs further by restricting their trading options, but then again we all know that stupidity is one commodity our governments do have an abundance of! – Ed)

ARE YOU MISSING OUT? Only the beer-stained copy left? Get

Most of our drink related crime and anti-social behaviour is not centred on our outlying areas caused by Mr & Mrs Average having gone over the top on Chardonnay imbibed while taking up an introductory offer! Stop the irresponsible promotions by all means but there must be a safeguard to allow local pubs to compete and offer an incentive to keep some of the money away from our town centre. Bernard Miles

16

Jolly Brewer Pub of the Year

delivered to your door! For a year (6 issues) send a £1.80 cheque/PO payable to “Peterborough CAMRA” and your address to:Daryl Ling 19 Lidgate Close Orton Longueville Peterborough PE2 7ZA

info@real-ale.org.uk

When so many pubs are having a hard time its good to know that some pubs are bucking the trend and thriving. The Jolly Brewer in Stamford is one such pub and I have great pleasure in announcing that our local members have voted it Pub of the Year for 2009. Jill & Dean have been at the pub for 3 years now and in that time they have taken the pub to new heights of perfection. The pub is owned by Admiral Taverns and over many years the pub has had a variety of landlords, many of them indifferent to the virtues of real ale. Admiral have been very lucky to have found Jill & Dean to look after this superb old pub and are obviously encouraging them. The choice of ales on offer has been wide ranging and has included Sharpe's, Oakham, Tydd Steam and Cottage, all of which appear in perfect

www.real-ale.org.uk

condition. They could of course have just chosen beers that were very ordinary but Dean knows a thing or two about real ale and chooses what he fancies which is obviously a recipe for success. It isn't just beer that makes a good pub though. The food on offer is very popular with all who try it and the chef is to be found beavering away behind the scenes. Add to this their support for beer festivals, a variety of sporting events including Push Penny and we have a pub worthy of an award. So I'd like to congratulate Jill & Dean for achieving Pub of the Year and wish them all the best for the future and I hope they will continue to provide what their customers want, a fantastic pub. Steve Williams Pubs Office 17


BREWERY NEWS

BAE GONES

Oakham Ales Brewery News So 2009 is upon us and many thoughts are as Private Frazer would say with such ghoulish cheer "We're Doomed, We're All Doomed". Jobs going by the thousand, the High Street a tumbling, pubs closing by the boat load and the first thing the Labour Party have nationalised- the bloody banks! So how are the good folk of Oakham Ales gonna beat the downturn in the economy? Their annual calendar of beers is out and about and hoping to put a bit of cheer into the gloomy pub outlook. The usual gang of four - JHB, Inferno, White Dwarf and Bishops Farewell remain regulars. Black Hole Porter, Attila, 3 Witches and Oblivion remain in their seasonal slots. As with previous years, the 6 bi-monthly beers have altered somewhat. Jan. & Feb. comes a new copper coloured fruity beer called Tera (Queen of the Succubi) 4.2% Mar. & Apr. Asylum 4.5% May & Jun. Endless Summer 3.4 % Jul & Aug. Helterskelter 5% Sept. & Oct. Mompesson's Gold 5% Nov. & Dec. a re-jigged Beer Monster at 4.8%. With the recently installed 6 barrel brew plant at The Brewery Tap at full tilt it’s back to the future for the surprises that head brewer John Bryan promised, and some old favourites make a welcome return. The 12 monthly beers are Jan. Heckler 4.8%; Feb. Kaleidoscope 4.7% Mar. Harlequin 4.9% 18

BAE Gones

Apr. Four Horsemen 5.2% May. Mild (as yet unnamad) 4% Jun. Twelve Monkeys 4.8% Jul. Kyber Pass 5.5% Aug. St. Bibiana 5.4% Sept. Red Neck 5.2% Oct. Five Leaves Left 4.5% Nov. Snake Charmer 4.5% Dec. Old Tosspot 5.2%. Just remember though that a 6-barrel brew doesn't dish out too much beer so once seen, must try! Cheers Dave Allett Oakham Ales B.L.O.

20 Years Ago Brewery closures were in the news yet again. This time it was Greenall Whitley threatening to close Davenports. A report by the Mintel Group suggested that 5000 pubs would close in the next five years because they fail to challenge the historic male-dominated pub culture. BAE suggested that the trend of marketing men turning pubs into themed bars and brasseries was more likely to result in their closure. We reported that the Still had been saved and would remain as a pub with beers supplied by Greene King, but that it would close at 9pm. 15 Years Ago Home consumption is, it now seems, a more popular option than that of going out

to the pub. Increasingly quality is ignored and the lowest common denominator, price, becomes the highest consideration. No – not today’s news but what we reported in BAE 15 years ago. We also reported that the new brewery in Oakham was already supplying Jeffrey Hudson Bitter and Old Tosspot to some local outlets. The Government announced that they want to sweep away the red tape that clogs up our industry and business enterprises. (Any licensees think that they succeeded?) 10 Years Ago The GAP (Great Atmosphere Project) was launched to encourage smoke-free areas in pubs. If only we had known what damage would be done to the pub trade in later years. We also printed four letters from our readers – and we’d love to do so again. All it takes is for some of you to write to us (or email the editor).

Great Beer Great Food Great Pub

A T HOLYOAK PLUMBING & HEATING CORGI REGISTERED 01733 208437 OR 07860 569389 192 STONALD ROAD

WHITTLESEY info@real-ale.org.uk

Market Place - Market Deeping 01778 344993 www.real-ale.org.uk

19


BREWERY NEWS

BAE GONES

Oakham Ales Brewery News So 2009 is upon us and many thoughts are as Private Frazer would say with such ghoulish cheer "We're Doomed, We're All Doomed". Jobs going by the thousand, the High Street a tumbling, pubs closing by the boat load and the first thing the Labour Party have nationalised- the bloody banks! So how are the good folk of Oakham Ales gonna beat the downturn in the economy? Their annual calendar of beers is out and about and hoping to put a bit of cheer into the gloomy pub outlook. The usual gang of four - JHB, Inferno, White Dwarf and Bishops Farewell remain regulars. Black Hole Porter, Attila, 3 Witches and Oblivion remain in their seasonal slots. As with previous years, the 6 bi-monthly beers have altered somewhat. Jan. & Feb. comes a new copper coloured fruity beer called Tera (Queen of the Succubi) 4.2% Mar. & Apr. Asylum 4.5% May & Jun. Endless Summer 3.4 % Jul & Aug. Helterskelter 5% Sept. & Oct. Mompesson's Gold 5% Nov. & Dec. a re-jigged Beer Monster at 4.8%. With the recently installed 6 barrel brew plant at The Brewery Tap at full tilt it’s back to the future for the surprises that head brewer John Bryan promised, and some old favourites make a welcome return. The 12 monthly beers are Jan. Heckler 4.8%; Feb. Kaleidoscope 4.7% Mar. Harlequin 4.9% 18

BAE Gones

Apr. Four Horsemen 5.2% May. Mild (as yet unnamad) 4% Jun. Twelve Monkeys 4.8% Jul. Kyber Pass 5.5% Aug. St. Bibiana 5.4% Sept. Red Neck 5.2% Oct. Five Leaves Left 4.5% Nov. Snake Charmer 4.5% Dec. Old Tosspot 5.2%. Just remember though that a 6-barrel brew doesn't dish out too much beer so once seen, must try! Cheers Dave Allett Oakham Ales B.L.O.

20 Years Ago Brewery closures were in the news yet again. This time it was Greenall Whitley threatening to close Davenports. A report by the Mintel Group suggested that 5000 pubs would close in the next five years because they fail to challenge the historic male-dominated pub culture. BAE suggested that the trend of marketing men turning pubs into themed bars and brasseries was more likely to result in their closure. We reported that the Still had been saved and would remain as a pub with beers supplied by Greene King, but that it would close at 9pm. 15 Years Ago Home consumption is, it now seems, a more popular option than that of going out

to the pub. Increasingly quality is ignored and the lowest common denominator, price, becomes the highest consideration. No – not today’s news but what we reported in BAE 15 years ago. We also reported that the new brewery in Oakham was already supplying Jeffrey Hudson Bitter and Old Tosspot to some local outlets. The Government announced that they want to sweep away the red tape that clogs up our industry and business enterprises. (Any licensees think that they succeeded?) 10 Years Ago The GAP (Great Atmosphere Project) was launched to encourage smoke-free areas in pubs. If only we had known what damage would be done to the pub trade in later years. We also printed four letters from our readers – and we’d love to do so again. All it takes is for some of you to write to us (or email the editor).

Great Beer Great Food Great Pub

A T HOLYOAK PLUMBING & HEATING CORGI REGISTERED 01733 208437 OR 07860 569389 192 STONALD ROAD

WHITTLESEY info@real-ale.org.uk

Market Place - Market Deeping 01778 344993 www.real-ale.org.uk

19


COMMITTEE

PUBS WITH A PAST

Welcome to the Committee Committee News The AGM of the Peterborough & District Branch of CAMRA was held at Fletton Ex Service & Working Mens Club on Tuesday 2nd December, 2008. East Anglia RD Andrea Briers traveled from her home in Kings Lynn to address the reasonable turnout of local members. Two new members were elected to the general committee, and their contact details can be found along with all other returning officers at the back of this newsletter.

Pubs With a Past Mr Church’s Off Licence

Werrington and the Coal Heavers Arms. John replaces Stuart Wright on the committee in a general position, but with the branch now launching our own LocAle scheme, he has been asked to coordinate this very important project. So do give him a call if you think your pub may qualify for the scheme, although being a devout Cornishman, you are probably more likely to receive a visit from John if you’ve got a drop of Skinners on the bar!

Alix Botton

Young Members Officer Alix Botton, daughter of long serving branch stalwarts Dave & Claire Botton, has replaced the outgoing Nicola Withers in this role. Alix is one of the many ‘Peterborough Beer Festival Babies’, having attended with her parents for many years as she grew up and helping out wherever she could, most recently helping her mum with front of house duties. Shown pictured in her New Years Eve fancy dress get up, this young ‘Wonder Woman’ is keen to get some events going for our younger real ale lovers, so please get in touch with your ideas and suggestions, or join her for a couple of pints in her local the Coalies.

This photo taken about 1926 is the premises of George Church in High Street, Stanground. Now long gone the premises were just a few yards from the now closed Coach & Horses and were in the same row as a butchers, a Co-op and four terraced houses. Some may argue that this is Fletton not Stanground but the boundary is slightly further along where the road kinks.

John Rice

The people standing outside next to the Model T Ford van, which was one of only two in Stanground at the time, are left to right:-

LocAle Officer John Rice is a very popular character who seems to have been on the scene since the year dot! Apart from putting in a full 3 week stint every year with his multi-faceted PBF duties, he is also to be seen helping out at many local pub festivals such as the Dragon, 20

Dennis Church (in van), George Church (senior), Jim Stamford, Ernie Smith, George Church (Junior), Irene Church, Unknown, Mrs Church, Unknown.

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

George Church Junior is still remembered around the village as he used to ply his trade as fruit and veg man around the streets of Stanground until his old age. Note the advertisment for Ind Coope's bottled ales & stouts at 6 and a half shillings a dozen. This works out at just over sixpence a pint! Oh happy days. My thanks to Julie Church for the loan of the photo. Does anyone have any old pub photos? Just let us know and we'll see about publishing them. Steve Williams steve@peterborough2000.freeserve.co.uk

21


COMMITTEE

PUBS WITH A PAST

Welcome to the Committee Committee News The AGM of the Peterborough & District Branch of CAMRA was held at Fletton Ex Service & Working Mens Club on Tuesday 2nd December, 2008. East Anglia RD Andrea Briers traveled from her home in Kings Lynn to address the reasonable turnout of local members. Two new members were elected to the general committee, and their contact details can be found along with all other returning officers at the back of this newsletter.

Pubs With a Past Mr Church’s Off Licence

Werrington and the Coal Heavers Arms. John replaces Stuart Wright on the committee in a general position, but with the branch now launching our own LocAle scheme, he has been asked to coordinate this very important project. So do give him a call if you think your pub may qualify for the scheme, although being a devout Cornishman, you are probably more likely to receive a visit from John if you’ve got a drop of Skinners on the bar!

Alix Botton

Young Members Officer Alix Botton, daughter of long serving branch stalwarts Dave & Claire Botton, has replaced the outgoing Nicola Withers in this role. Alix is one of the many ‘Peterborough Beer Festival Babies’, having attended with her parents for many years as she grew up and helping out wherever she could, most recently helping her mum with front of house duties. Shown pictured in her New Years Eve fancy dress get up, this young ‘Wonder Woman’ is keen to get some events going for our younger real ale lovers, so please get in touch with your ideas and suggestions, or join her for a couple of pints in her local the Coalies.

This photo taken about 1926 is the premises of George Church in High Street, Stanground. Now long gone the premises were just a few yards from the now closed Coach & Horses and were in the same row as a butchers, a Co-op and four terraced houses. Some may argue that this is Fletton not Stanground but the boundary is slightly further along where the road kinks.

John Rice

The people standing outside next to the Model T Ford van, which was one of only two in Stanground at the time, are left to right:-

LocAle Officer John Rice is a very popular character who seems to have been on the scene since the year dot! Apart from putting in a full 3 week stint every year with his multi-faceted PBF duties, he is also to be seen helping out at many local pub festivals such as the Dragon, 20

Dennis Church (in van), George Church (senior), Jim Stamford, Ernie Smith, George Church (Junior), Irene Church, Unknown, Mrs Church, Unknown.

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

George Church Junior is still remembered around the village as he used to ply his trade as fruit and veg man around the streets of Stanground until his old age. Note the advertisment for Ind Coope's bottled ales & stouts at 6 and a half shillings a dozen. This works out at just over sixpence a pint! Oh happy days. My thanks to Julie Church for the loan of the photo. Does anyone have any old pub photos? Just let us know and we'll see about publishing them. Steve Williams steve@peterborough2000.freeserve.co.uk

21


CHAS & DAVE

RHYTHM & BOOZE

Chas & Dave on Tour The intrepid duo has managed to complete another safari into less frequented waters – sorry I mean beers, of our region. The trusty Stagecoach bus was once again our mode of transport conveying us to the fenland town of March on a bright wintry day. Alighting in the town centres’ Broad Street we headed for our first port of call the Rose and Crown in St Peters Road, about a ten minutes walk. This previous GBG entry has in recent years undergone a few changes of licensees and the inevitable brief closures. A good pint of Oakham JHB was poured by a pleasant young man who informed us that he and his partner had taken over the pub recently, after being deputy managers at The Woodman in Peterborough. No hiding place in March! Three other beers were on offer. Heading back to the main road again we entered the William IV an unspoilt 1930s pub, and one of my favourites in the town. Another previous GBG entry this pub is unique for the selling as regular beers Timothy Taylors Landlord and the delicious Ram Tam. The pub was quite busy with diners tucking into pre-xmas lunches from a well presented menu. Two other beers from Greene King were available. A short walk towards the town centre saw us sitting on a comfy sofa in the Oliver Cromwell Hotel bar. A current entry in the GBG 2009 the bar had four beers on tap, three of which were of a Christmas theme. A large party of mostly ladies were having what appeared to be their staff Xmas ‘do’ and distracted my accomplice on a number of occasions! Oh, and the loos in the hotel are fab. We supped two pints in The Cromwell then reluctantly moved on.

22

The George is on the main street with a white fence at the front, and is quite deceiving from the outside giving the impression of a small pub. Although the front bar is not very big the rest of the pub is fairly spread out into a dining area and another lounge bar. A pint of Flowers IPA was served by a friendly cheerful bar maid whose name was Emma – I’m not good on remembering names so she may be chuffed if she reads this. Next call was one of the towns Elgood pubs, but we had to pick the one with no cask beer. The Red Lion is near to the river. Opposite on the other corner is The Griffin Hotel. Having been in there not that long ago, we were disappointed to find the beer range not terribly exciting. Departing across the river we entered The Ship a very small Greene King pub. A pint of GK IPA was served by a slightly distracted barmaid. Investigation by C revealed the reason was a laser game being played on a monitor by a young chap and the said maiden. After a fruitless effort at ‘having a go’ we departed for our last call. Around the corner we came upon The Coachmakers another GK pub. The one roomed bar had IPA on offer. Bus time was approaching so we bade farewell to the barman and headed back to Broad Street a short walk around the corner. It was agreed that our second Chas & Dave tour was a success, March town being a friendly and welcoming place for a pub crawl.

Rhythm & Booze Featured in the last edition, both The Replicas and The Nuggets are booked to appear at The Elmtree Tavern (formerly The Comet) in February. The Replicas play their mix of Mod, Punk and Ska on the evening of Friday 20th, while The Nuggets can be seen and heard on the evening of Saturday 28th on 106.8 Lite FM earlier in the day when they play a lunchtime session. Talk of lunch reminds me of The Hit or Miss, Foundry Road, Stamford. Claiming to be the town’s only specialist sausage bar, this Bateman’s house has plenty of live bands on offer in February. Starting with Oak on the 6th, Spare Parts on the 13th, South Sound Two on the 20th, Feet to the Fire on the 27th and The Overdubs on the 28th. Closer to home for is The Whittle Way, Stanground, where landlord Steve is doing his bit to spread the real ale message. There’s two or three ales on the pump at any one time, including Jennings Cumberland, Bombadier and Spitfire, live music’s to be found here a couple of times a month. Playing classic rock covers there’s Hooker on the 6th February, Retrolux on the 13th and Bowie tribute Aladinsane on the 27th followed by Oasis tribute Need More Salt on 27th March.

If you’re in a band or a venue that sells real ale and puts on live music send a brief description and an email to simonstabler@aol.com by the end of February. Simon Stabler

Cheers Chas & Dave

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

23


CHAS & DAVE

RHYTHM & BOOZE

Chas & Dave on Tour The intrepid duo has managed to complete another safari into less frequented waters – sorry I mean beers, of our region. The trusty Stagecoach bus was once again our mode of transport conveying us to the fenland town of March on a bright wintry day. Alighting in the town centres’ Broad Street we headed for our first port of call the Rose and Crown in St Peters Road, about a ten minutes walk. This previous GBG entry has in recent years undergone a few changes of licensees and the inevitable brief closures. A good pint of Oakham JHB was poured by a pleasant young man who informed us that he and his partner had taken over the pub recently, after being deputy managers at The Woodman in Peterborough. No hiding place in March! Three other beers were on offer. Heading back to the main road again we entered the William IV an unspoilt 1930s pub, and one of my favourites in the town. Another previous GBG entry this pub is unique for the selling as regular beers Timothy Taylors Landlord and the delicious Ram Tam. The pub was quite busy with diners tucking into pre-xmas lunches from a well presented menu. Two other beers from Greene King were available. A short walk towards the town centre saw us sitting on a comfy sofa in the Oliver Cromwell Hotel bar. A current entry in the GBG 2009 the bar had four beers on tap, three of which were of a Christmas theme. A large party of mostly ladies were having what appeared to be their staff Xmas ‘do’ and distracted my accomplice on a number of occasions! Oh, and the loos in the hotel are fab. We supped two pints in The Cromwell then reluctantly moved on.

22

The George is on the main street with a white fence at the front, and is quite deceiving from the outside giving the impression of a small pub. Although the front bar is not very big the rest of the pub is fairly spread out into a dining area and another lounge bar. A pint of Flowers IPA was served by a friendly cheerful bar maid whose name was Emma – I’m not good on remembering names so she may be chuffed if she reads this. Next call was one of the towns Elgood pubs, but we had to pick the one with no cask beer. The Red Lion is near to the river. Opposite on the other corner is The Griffin Hotel. Having been in there not that long ago, we were disappointed to find the beer range not terribly exciting. Departing across the river we entered The Ship a very small Greene King pub. A pint of GK IPA was served by a slightly distracted barmaid. Investigation by C revealed the reason was a laser game being played on a monitor by a young chap and the said maiden. After a fruitless effort at ‘having a go’ we departed for our last call. Around the corner we came upon The Coachmakers another GK pub. The one roomed bar had IPA on offer. Bus time was approaching so we bade farewell to the barman and headed back to Broad Street a short walk around the corner. It was agreed that our second Chas & Dave tour was a success, March town being a friendly and welcoming place for a pub crawl.

Rhythm & Booze Featured in the last edition, both The Replicas and The Nuggets are booked to appear at The Elmtree Tavern (formerly The Comet) in February. The Replicas play their mix of Mod, Punk and Ska on the evening of Friday 20th, while The Nuggets can be seen and heard on the evening of Saturday 28th on 106.8 Lite FM earlier in the day when they play a lunchtime session. Talk of lunch reminds me of The Hit or Miss, Foundry Road, Stamford. Claiming to be the town’s only specialist sausage bar, this Bateman’s house has plenty of live bands on offer in February. Starting with Oak on the 6th, Spare Parts on the 13th, South Sound Two on the 20th, Feet to the Fire on the 27th and The Overdubs on the 28th. Closer to home for is The Whittle Way, Stanground, where landlord Steve is doing his bit to spread the real ale message. There’s two or three ales on the pump at any one time, including Jennings Cumberland, Bombadier and Spitfire, live music’s to be found here a couple of times a month. Playing classic rock covers there’s Hooker on the 6th February, Retrolux on the 13th and Bowie tribute Aladinsane on the 27th followed by Oasis tribute Need More Salt on 27th March.

If you’re in a band or a venue that sells real ale and puts on live music send a brief description and an email to simonstabler@aol.com by the end of February. Simon Stabler

Cheers Chas & Dave

info@real-ale.org.uk

www.real-ale.org.uk

23


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25


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info@real-ale.org.uk

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25


BRANCH CONTACTS

Branch Committee Secretary: Harry Morten 49 St Margarets Rd, Peterborough PE2 9EA 01733 764296 (h) 07900 056940 (m) 08707 620848 (fax) info@real-ale.org.uk Chairman: David Murray 01733 560453 chairman@real-ale.org.uk Treasurer: Paul Beecham 01733 311981(h) 07710 008693 treasurer@real-ale.org.uk Vice Chair: John Hunt 01406 330453 (h) vice-chair@real-ale.org.uk

Beer Around ’Ere Editor: Paul (Bram) Brammer 07922 604988 (m) bae-editor@real-ale.org.uk Distribution: Position vacant Advertising: Neil Richards 01536 358670 (h & w) n.richards@btinternet.com Magazine & Advertising Production: Dan Wheeler 01733 751286 (h&w) dan@tamoko-design.co.uk Postal Distr: Daryl Ling 01733 235881 (h) LocALE Officer: John Rice

Brewery Liaison Officers Blue Bell: John Hunt 01406 330453 (h) Digfield: Paul Brammer Pubs Officer: Steve Williams 07922 604988 (m) 07802 896641 (m) Elgoods: Dawn Mason pubs-officer@real-ale.org.uk 01733 243557 (h) Press Officer: Robert Barnes Hopshackle: Noel Ryland 07944 869656 (m) 07811 585699 (m) Melbourn: Lew Clayton press-officer@real-ale.org.uk 01780 765063 (h) Oakham Ales: Dave Allett Young Members: 07966 344417 (m) Alix Botton youngmembers@realale.org.uk Tydd Steam: John Hunt 01706 330453 (h) Ufford Ales: Matt Mace Membership: Daryl Ling 07809 629241 (m) 01733 235881 (h) membership@real-ale.org.uk Trading Standards 08545 040506 (w) Festival Org: Mike Lane www.consumerdirect.gov.uk 07850 334203 (m) festivalorganiser@realale.org.uk

Social Sec: John Hunt social-sec@real-ale.org.uk

26

The next issue of BAE will be published on: Friday 27th March. We must have your stories, news and advertisements by: Friday 13th March. Late copy cannot be guaranteed entry. Please contact Neil Richards on 01536 358670 for all of your advertising needs. Steve Williams pubs-officer@real-ale.org.uk or 07802 896641 is always looking for pub news. Please send stories and other copy to Bram (Paul Brammer) bae-editor@real-ale.org.uk 07922 604988 Beer Around ‘Ere is published by Peterborough & District Branch of CAMRA Copyright © 2008, The Campaign for Real Ale Ltd. Views or comments expressed in this publication may not necessarily be those of the Editor or of CAMRA.

info@real-ale.org.uk


BRANCH CONTACTS

Branch Committee Secretary: Harry Morten 49 St Margarets Rd, Peterborough PE2 9EA 01733 764296 (h) 07900 056940 (m) 08707 620848 (fax) info@real-ale.org.uk Chairman: David Murray 01733 560453 chairman@real-ale.org.uk Treasurer: Paul Beecham 01733 311981(h) 07710 008693 treasurer@real-ale.org.uk Vice Chair: John Hunt 01406 330453 (h) vice-chair@real-ale.org.uk

Beer Around ’Ere Editor: Paul (Bram) Brammer 07922 604988 (m) bae-editor@real-ale.org.uk Distribution: Position vacant Advertising: Neil Richards 01536 358670 (h & w) n.richards@btinternet.com Magazine & Advertising Production: Dan Wheeler 01733 751286 (h&w) dan@tamoko-design.co.uk Postal Distr: Daryl Ling 01733 235881 (h) LocALE Officer: John Rice

Brewery Liaison Officers Blue Bell: John Hunt 01406 330453 (h) Digfield: Paul Brammer Pubs Officer: Steve Williams 07922 604988 (m) 07802 896641 (m) Elgoods: Dawn Mason pubs-officer@real-ale.org.uk 01733 243557 (h) Press Officer: Robert Barnes Hopshackle: Noel Ryland 07944 869656 (m) 07811 585699 (m) Melbourn: Lew Clayton press-officer@real-ale.org.uk 01780 765063 (h) Oakham Ales: Dave Allett Young Members: 07966 344417 (m) Alix Botton youngmembers@realale.org.uk Tydd Steam: John Hunt 01706 330453 (h) Ufford Ales: Matt Mace Membership: Daryl Ling 07809 629241 (m) 01733 235881 (h) membership@real-ale.org.uk Trading Standards 08545 040506 (w) Festival Org: Mike Lane www.consumerdirect.gov.uk 07850 334203 (m) festivalorganiser@realale.org.uk

Social Sec: John Hunt social-sec@real-ale.org.uk

26

The next issue of BAE will be published on: Friday 27th March. We must have your stories, news and advertisements by: Friday 13th March. Late copy cannot be guaranteed entry. Please contact Neil Richards on 01536 358670 for all of your advertising needs. Steve Williams pubs-officer@real-ale.org.uk or 07802 896641 is always looking for pub news. Please send stories and other copy to Bram (Paul Brammer) bae-editor@real-ale.org.uk 07922 604988 Beer Around ‘Ere is published by Peterborough & District Branch of CAMRA Copyright © 2008, The Campaign for Real Ale Ltd. Views or comments expressed in this publication may not necessarily be those of the Editor or of CAMRA.

info@real-ale.org.uk


THE GREEN MAN 29 Scotgate, Stamford 01780 753598 Established in 1796 as one of the ORIGINAL Stamford Ale Houses - Providing Accommodation, Lunch Time Meals and Seven Real Ales

INCS SOUTHSLT PUB LARGE STIVAL BEER FE

40+ Real Ales from mainly micro breweries 8 Real Ciders 20+ Bottled Belgian Beers Draught Leffe Blonde, Adnams Sundrift and Amstell.

Opening Times Friday to Monday: 12noon to 12midnight Live Music Friday, Saturday and Sunday Covered outside bar Bed and Breakfast Available Lunchtime Food - 12 to 2.30pm

TEN YE IN THE ARS G

BEER G OOD UIDE!

BAE 145  

Beer Around 'Ere, the newsletter of the Peterborough & District Branch of the Campaign for Real Ale. Feb-Mar 2009

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