FIGHTING FOR DRINKERS’ RIGHTS IN THE HEART OF LANCASHIRE SINCE 1973
issue 118, Spring 2018 03 05 09 10
Pub of the Season: Masons Arms Brewery News Longridge Libations Preston Parade
13 14 16 20
Beer Tasting Chorley Chatter Historic Preston Pubs: Part 1 George Lee Memorial Trophy
22 24 26 28
Riley’s Rambles: Darwen & Blackburn Forgotten Pub Names Ale Cry visits… Coppull Chorley Ale Trail
CENTRAL LANCASHIRE BRANCH
elcome to our Spring 2018 edition of Ale Cry, our double award winning magazine. Yes, I am delighted to say that Ale Cry has been chosen by CAMRA West Pennine region as the “most improved Branch magazine of the year” AND the “Regional magazine of the year”. A massive thank you must go to Editor, Adrian Smith and the editorial panel that he heads up. A fantastic achievement and well deserved after a lot of hard work throughout 2017. CAMRA’s AGM is to be held in Coventry in April and the Campaign is set to widen its remit to represent drinkers of quality beers, ciders and perries of all types, as well as moving its focus beyond traditional pubs, if its members approve recommendations put before them. While continuing to advocate that real ale is the pinnacle of the brewer’s craft, the Campaign’s wider focus will mean all drinkers who enjoy a range of beers, ciders and perries will feel welcome in the organisation. If the changes are approved, CAMRA will work to provide an enhanced education and information experience for its members, and all drinkers who attend CAMRA festivals, to help them appreciate and learn about all types and styles of beer, cider and perry – and make informed decisions about what constitutes “quality”. While campaigning for the continued production and consumption of real ale, cider and perry will remain at the core of CAMRA’s objectives, members will be asked to consider changes to the organisation’s Articles of Association which will widen the range of types of beer that it represents – including quality beer which does not meet the organisation’s definition of “real ale”. The recommendations also propose that as a result of widening its scope of interest CAMRA will be able to represent and engage with all beer drinkers and with all pubgoers, irrespective of what they choose to drink, increasing its ability to campaign in the interests of a much larger constituency. This broadening of consumer representation will also see CAMRA demonstrate an interest in, and lobby for, a much wider range of on-trade outlets. While the organisation will continue to campaign for the preservation of the traditional British pub, it will also encourage on-trade outlets of all kinds to serve quality beer, cider and perry. CAMRA will continue to advocate drinking in public social venues, rather than the increasing practice of people buying their drinks from supermarkets for home consumption. These proposals have been reached after
ISSUE 118 SPRING 2018
Branch Contacts Chairman DAVE BELL t: 07900 565281 e: email@example.com
Membership Secretary JOHN SINGLETON t: 07456 914048 e: firstname.lastname@example.org
Treasurer DAVE WOOLCOCK e: email@example.com
Secretary & Webmaster GORDON SMALL t: 01772 746118 e: firstname.lastname@example.org
Pubs Officer DAVE WOOLCOCK e: email@example.com
Pub Protection Officer DAVE LINLEY t: 01772 735628 e: firstname.lastname@example.org
CAMRA launched a review of its purpose and objectives, called the Revitalisation Project, at the start of 2016. CAMRA’s 190,000 members have been involved and consulted throughout the process and will soon have their say by being able to vote in April. CAMRA National Chairman, Colin Valentine says, “Our recommendations mark an important stage in CAMRA’s long history. We recognise that the beer and pub landscape has changed and continues to evolve, and our place in that landscape has changed as well. We’re determined to make sure that we continue to change and evolve so that we are relevant to drinkers of all types and continue to offer a compelling reason for people to join our organisation.” It will be interesting to see the outcome of the vote, which ultimately will influence the future direction of the Campaign. As ever, if you have any thoughts, comments or feedback, please get in touch with us via email, you will find a contact list in this magazine, or better still, come along to one of our forthcoming meetings or events. Please also remember to visit our website www.centrallancs.camra.org.uk for all the latest information and local news and if you are on Facebook, please search for CAMRA Central Lancs and like our page. In addition, you can now follow us on Twitter, search for CAMRA Central Lancs. We also produce a monthly newsletter which is emailed to Branch members on the 1st of each month. If you are not receiving this, it will be because we do not have an up to date email address for you. Please get in touch and let us have your email address and we will add you to our list of recipients. Kind Regards DAV E B E L L
Cider Officer LUKE HARRISON e: email@example.com
Social Media Officer MIKE WOOLCOCK e: firstname.lastname@example.org
Communications Officer MICK CLARK t: 07984 840486 e: email@example.com
Ale Cry Editor ADRIAN SMITH t: 07495 448555 e: firstname.lastname@example.org
Social Secretary POST VACANT www.centrallancs.camra.org.uk @CAMRA_CentLancs CAMRA Central Lancashire Branch All material copyright © Central Lancs CAMRA No part of this magazine may be reproduced without permission. Disclaimer: Views expressed in this magazine are those of the individual authors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Editor, Branch Committee or CAMRA nationally. Central Lancs CAMRA accepts no liability in relation to any advertisement or article and recommends the reader make their own enquiries. It should also be noted that inclusion of an advertisement in this magazine should not be deemed an endorsement of quality by Central Lancs CAMRA. Design & Layout: Stewart Grieve Design Ltd e: email@example.com www.stewartgrieve.co.uk Printed by: Printplus, Cocker Avenue, Poulton-le-Fylde, FY6 8JU t: 01253 299620 www.printplusgroup.com
of Pub the season
Masons Arms CHORLEY
e are delighted to announce that our Pub of the Season for Spring 2018 is the MASONS ARMS on Harpers Lane in Chorley. In contrast to the previous winner, which was a brand new pub, the Masons’ history as a pub can be traced back to the mid 1800’s. Once owned by the local Whittle Springs Brewery, the pub passed to Nuttall & Co and then Matthew Brown before ending up in pubco ownership. For many years it did not sell real ale and when it closed in late 2016, many of us in the branch did not expect it to reopen. The new owner is Nicky Reid, who after a career as a professional footballer and sports physio, took the plunge and bought the pub in early 2017. After an extensive (mainly DIY) refurbishment, the pub reopened on 1st July 2017, run by Nick and his partner Cheryl Folan. The multi room layout has been retained, with a small tap room at the front of the building, a large rear lounge and a smaller front lounge. With the removal of the cladding from the original stonework, the impressive fireplaces are ideal for wood burning stoves
and there are three of these, making this a cosy haven on the coldest of winter days. At the rear is a small yard which makes an ideal outside drinking area when the weather is warmer. Despite Chorley’s growing reputation as a real ale destination, this is a part of town where pubs have traditionally struggled to sell real ale. However there are 6 handpumps on the bar, and Nick has been selling great quality ales ever since he reopened. There is normally one dark beer available and four pale or golden beers, although occasionally something a bit unusual does sneak on to the bar. Many of the beers on offer are brewed
in the north-west, with Hawkshead and Blackjack regularly appearing and recently beers from Beer Brothers have also featured. One of the pumps is now reserved for a changing cider and there is an extensive array of gins in the back bar. The pub opens at 3pm Mon–Thur and from noon Fri–Sun. The tap room and rear lounge have TV’s and live sport is shown, although it is not intrusive. There is occasional live music and Handley’s pies are available to eat. Our presentation of this award is on 26th April from about 8pm and we hope to see you there. It’s a bit out of the centre of town, but well worth the walk. ADRIAN SMITH
FULWOOD & BROUGHTON CRICKET CLUB Tel: 01772 863003
Cordially invite you to
BEER FESTIVAL VII Quality local and regional cask ales and ciders, and continental lagers. Back by popular demand, Gin and Prosecco bar.
6.00 – 11.00PM
1.00 – 11.00PM
1.00 – 10.30PM
Enjoy your great beer, delicious food, excellent choice of gin, chilled prosecco, exciting cricket and the sunshine. SATURDAY: F&BCC v MORECAMBE CC SUNDAY: F&BCC v GREAT ECCLESTON CC Junction of Garstang Road & Lightfoot Lane MANY THANKS TO ALL OUR SPONSORS AND BEER FESTIVAL SPONSOR
Stanways of Lytham PRESTON ROAD, LYTHAM ST. ANNES, LANCASHIRE. FY8 5BG T: 01253 794700
OLD VIC SUNDAY NIGHT QUIZ WITH CASH JACKPOT
Serving breakfasts, lunchtime specials and all traditional pub food. Also sandwiches, salads and delicious home made pies. Parties catered for.
• 7 Handpumps revolving up to 25 cask ales including many local brewers each week • 50p Wetherspoons vouchers now redeemed
• New enlarged outdoor area with large screen TV
• Included in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide
• Outside area now covered and heated
• Upto 20 gins on our new gin menu
• Live music all summer
• Live train arrival and departure times shown
• Sky/BT showing all major sporting events
Fishergate, Preston Opposite Preston Railway Station 01772 828519
ISSUE 118 SPRING 2018
BREWERY NEWS Our regular feature keeping you updated with information about our local breweries, their plans, their beers and where to buy them. Links to the brewery websites and Facebook pages can be found on the Local Breweries tab on the branch website: www.centrallancs.camra.org.uk
Beer Brothers Brewing continues at the new site at Walton Summit and beers are appearing at a wider selection of pubs in our area. Bottle sales are also progressing with the addition of their 6.5% Dunkel Storm which is a wheat beer with hints of tart berries and liquorice. There are 5 core cask beers, 5 core craft beers (all different) and all are available in bottles along with the White Widow (8.5%) and the Black Widow (9.9%), which are now only kegged to order. They will also be brewing Limited Edition Experimental beers throughout the year. Brewery tours are now available to book, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org. The Brewery Tap was opened prior to Christmas but having closed in January, we now understand it will be opening on Fridays and Saturdays from noon (although we suggest you check their Facebook page or ring first if you are planning to visit).
Bishop’s Crook There is nothing to report on Bishop’s Crook as they remain out of action (now almost six months). However it is hoped that they will recommence brewing in the next few months.
Brindle Distillery This is a recent addition to our area and is primarily a distillery for Cuckoo Gin, however they also have an on-site bar – the Cuckoo’s Nest, which is understood to sell their own hand-pumped ales, plus recently, one from Farm Yard ales at Cockerham. The bar has very limited opening hours from 4–11 every other weekend. It’s probably best to check the website beforehand.
Leyland. The core range of beers is available in bottle, but they have now started developing an experimental range – Leyland Experimental Vehicle or LEV for short. LEV1 was an American Amber on cask that was served in their regular outlets such as the Market Ale House in Leyland, Hoppy Days in Longridge and others in the surrounding area. LEV2 NZ Pale was also available in cask and bottle and was similarly well received. They continue to make bespoke brews for Barrica Wines – producing a summer beer for them in 2017 – Eric’s Shed, a golden ale and also produced a chocolate orange stout for sale at Christmas. Looking forward to 2018 – they will shortly be launching a range of Badger Stouts in 330ml bottles – an Imperial version at 6.7%, a chocolate orange version at 6.1% and a vanilla stout at around 6.5% – this will be in a 3 pack – the Badger Sett. This will be available at their usual outlets, farmers markets and also direct from the brewery. They also now have the ability to run a small outside bar at festivals – and have a couple booked in already at Claytonle-Woods Summer Fair and also a bit further afield at Stockton Heath festival in July. Whilst they may be small in brewery terms, this allows them to create bespoke brews for weddings and other celebrations
– including a birthday beer for Hoppy Days in Longridge last December and have also invested in a state of the art label printer which allows them to do labels in house for bottles and have also produced small runs for other breweries.
Darkwave At last some information has surfaced about Darkwave. Previously known as Arkwrights Brewery, they began brewing at the rear of the Real Ale Shop on Lovat Road in 2010 using a 2.5-barrel plant. In 2014 the plant was upgraded to a 10-barrel plant and moved to their current premises. Darkwave are now producing a
range of 19 beers, all of which are described as modern artisan beers, always unfined and vegan. The 19 beers are: Altered State (Golden Ale 4.5%) Odyssey (Pale Ale 4.4%) Bleeding Edge (Pale Ale 5.3%) Intergalactic (Pale Ale 4.2%) Love Buzz (Pale Ale 4.1%) Dawn Chorus (IPA 4.4%) Abyss (IPA 4.4%) Monolith (Pale Ale 4.9%) Fallen Angel (Pale Ale 3.9%) Sentinel (Pale Ale 4.0% Exodus (IPA 4.3%) Eleventh Hour (IPA 4.3%) 1605 (Pale Ale 4.0%) Hashtag (Pale Ale 4.4%) Quantum Eraser (Pale Ale 4.3%) Guido (Pale Ale 4.2%) MD5 (Pale Ale 4%) Twin Paradox (Pale Ale 4.1%) Krampus (English Bitter 4.5%)
Goosnargh There has not been any conclusion to the ongoing sale of the pub and brewery and until there is, brewing continues typically 3 times a fortnight.
Grill & Grain at the Boatyard There has been no visible progress on rebuilding the fire damaged pub and brewery. However a recent article in the local press confirmed that Thwaite’s were looking to rebuild the pub and brewery and expected to have plans submitted to council during the spring.
Crankshaft Crankshaft brewery has been running for approx 18 months now – in that time they have grown steadily from producing 2 casks per brew to now producing 10 casks a brew from the new brewery in Moss Side in www.centrallancs.camra.org.uk
Hart/Oscars Lancashire Beer Company have now taken full control of the brewery from founder John Smith who will continue to be employed to continue brewing. From 5th March the brewing arm will be re-branded as “Oscars Brewery” which will have re-designed pump clips and re-named beers. Blonde Beaver will become Bonnie (4%); Nutty SquirAle will become Muddy Paws (4%); Lord of the Glen will become Golden Retriever (4.2%); and Azzacca will become Tail Wagger (3.8%). Bottled beers will retain their current names until stock runs out. They are soon to install a 3 Pin (1 Pin = 4.5gall) micro test kit in which they can experiment with different brews. Distribution areas are growing slowly and their beers have recently appeared at the Withy Arms group pubs and, out of our area, around Lancaster and Kendal.
Hubsters The run up to Christmas was a particularly busy time with the brewery having stalls at local markets. The core range of beers
has now settled to four: Hop Session (3.6%), Hop Scotch (3.8%), Hop On and Tribute (both 4.7%) with seasonal and occasional brews being available as well. All beers are available in bottled conditioned form as well. There are no regular outlets for this brewery, with beers being available intermittently from the specialist real ale outlets in our area and beyond.
Partridge A new nano-brewery located at the Dog & Partridge Pub, which is situated on Hesketh Lane, between Thornley and Chipping. Partridge Brewery started brewing in late summer 2017 and although it is still early days, have recently had cask ale available in a few local micropubs. A Dark Mild has been seen in the run up to Christmas.
Priest Town Describing themselves as Preston’s own Craft Microbrewery, Priest Town started brewing in 2017 on a 2.5 bbl plant. There is an initial range of six ‘bottle conditioned’ beers available: Harris Stout, Ribble Red, Addison’s
Ale, Livesey’s Lager, PR2 IPA and Zingari. The brewery has recently produced its first cask barrel, which was Harris Stout, for Brooodbars beer festival in Leicester.
Rivington The brewery specialises in what are perhaps described as non mainstream beers, mainly above 5% ABV. The beers are unfiltered, unpasteurised and unfined, and this, combined with the fact that they use premium ingredients and are not the cheapest to buy, means that there is a limited demand for them in the many free houses in our area. Only about 20% of production is turned into cask beer, with the majority being in keg or bottle form. The two core beers are now: Today Was a Good Day (6.6%) a classic West Coast IPA, and Never Known Fog Like It (5.2%) a New England Pale Ale. There are numerous seasonal and one off beers brewed and brewer Ben Stubbs enjoys doing collaborations with other brewers. Recent ones have included Torrside (New Mills), Blackedge (Horwich) and Pig &
Hoppy Days M I C R O P U B
L O N G R I D G E
Thank you CAMRA and our lovely customers for your support!
• 5 Rotating, Hand-Pulled Real Ales • 3 Natural Still Ciders • Continental + ‘Craft’ Bottled Beers • Wines + Spirits • Juices, Sodas + Snacks
ISSUE 118 SPRING 2018
Open Hours: Monday : 3-8pm Tuesday : Closed Wednesday : 3-9pm Thursday : 3-9pm Friday : 3-10pm Saturday : 1-10pm Sunday : 1-8pm
Porter (Tunbridge Wells) as well as members of local CAMRA branches. Further collaborations are planned for 2018 including Brewsmiths, Thirst Class and Farm Yard. Last year they held a couple of ‘Tap Beneath the Trees’ events near to the brewery and are looking to hold them monthly from May to September this year, possibly more frequently if they can get a permanent bar established. For more info on this, and for information on where their beers might be appearing, follow them on Twitter (@rivingtonbrewco).
Third Eye Owner Matthew Leach is looking to acquire larger capacity brewing plant. However until the current plant has been sold this will not be possible and brewing has been temporarily suspended. So if you’re looking for a 1.5 barrel brewing plant, this is the place to start. S T E V E JAC K S O N – with thanks for the contributions of the brewery liaison officers (BLO)
BREWERS If you read this and you think we have missed something, please let us know. It’s virtually a free advert!
Branch Pub of the Season Summer 2017
THE RED HERRING
MicroBar In the cellar of the Albert Hotel 117 Albert Road, Blackpool, FY1 4PW
STE & MARY WELCOME YOU TO COPPULL’S TOP FREEHOUSE. Guest ales include
Bank Top, Reedley Hallows, Prospect, Wily Fox and many more
Live entertainment last Saturday of the month. Sunday night quiz. Ring Mill function room for hire.
Monday–Thursday from 3pm Friday–Sunday from 12 noon
Real Ale and Real Cider Over 20 Belgian Beers Fruit Wines, Spirits & Snacks 20% CAMRA discount
Opening Hours Thursday Saturday
3-9 pm Friday 3-10.30 pm 1-10.30 pm Sunday 1-8 pm
MILL LANE, COPPULL, CHORLEY, LANCS 01257 470130
ST T E R E SA’S PENWORTHAM
REAL ALE CIDERS BIG SCREEN TV SKY SPORTS
BT SPORTS FREE WI FI POOL / SNOOKER LARGE FUNCTION ROOM LAGERS
SPIRITS WINE GIN BAR SOFT DRINKS
OPEN MON–THUR 7–11 • FRI 7–12 • SAT 4–12 • SUN 4–11
34 QUEENSWAY PENWORTHAM PRESTON PR1 0DS TEL 01772 743523 8
ISSUE 118 SPRING 2018
ime for another update from Longridge and the vibrant pub scene going on there. Longridge lies 8 miles to the North-East of Preston and is extremely well served by the Number 1 bus from Preston Bus Station. This service runs between Preston and Longridge every 10 minutes on weekdays and Saturdays and every 30 minutes in the evenings and on Sundays. Even better, the service runs late into the night on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Longridge is a great day or night out and is fast becoming a destination for real ale. If you haven’t been for a while, I suggest you take the opportunity to go soon and see for yourself. I’m delighted to start with the fact that the gap at the top of Berry Lane has been filled with the re-opening of the DOG INN. The pub has been brought back to life by the owner, Ben Lee, who’s mission has been to turn the once vibrant pub back into the thriving local watering hole that it was. This historic inn is now decorated in a rustic style with a quirky fusion. It is full of cosy, intimate spaces and has three log fires to sit by while you tuck into one of its hearty Sunday roasts. There is also the ‘Dog House’, a small tap room which provides an alternative atmosphere, where friends can meet for a pint, watch sport and play darts. Add to that a sun-trap terrace
Next on Berry Lane is the TOWNELEY ARMS. Licensees Danny and Charlotte are doing a great job. The pub continues to thrive and is a welcoming, friendly place for a drink and some great food, remaining at the heart of the community. The real ale is always good and local breweries Lancaster and Moorhouse’s feature regularly. Live music and other events are a regular occurrence. A discount of 20p per pint is available on all cask ale every Monday. Across the road, the TAP & VENT is a great success. This true freehouse, serving 4 rotating cask ales and a real cider alongside craft beers and lagers from all around the world has established itself as a place to go for quality cask ale. This was the first micropub to open in Longridge and has proved so popular that, in December, owners Nickie and Duncan opened their second micro in Goosnargh. Situated opposite the Stag’s Head, I hope that this new free house, TAP & T’ALES enjoys similar success. Lower down but still on Berry Lane BILLY’S WINE BAR can be found close to Booths. More of a wine bar than a pub, although there are 2 hand pumps which serve decent real ale, typically from local breweries such as Bowland Brewery and Goosnargh Brewing Company. By the time you read this, the FORREST ARMS should have reopened following a brief closure for a refurb. The pub, on Derby Road, has had a total investment of more than £50,000 from pub managers, Alan and Christina Odix, and Ei Publican Partnerships. Refurbishments to this popular pub are said to
for warmer days, where you can dine al fresco – and you’ve got a place that’s well worth a visit all year round. A choice of real ale is available, typically from local breweries, while the house cask, Dog Inn Blonde, brewed by Westgate Brewery (3.9%) is ever-present. Heading down Berry Lane, the DURHAM OX is the first port of call. Licensee Irene runs a traditional pub which is a great place to go for a warm welcome and to watch live sport. At least two quality cask beers are available. Continuing down Berry Lane, LONGRIDGE CONSERVATIVE CLUB have appointed a new manager, Michelle Turner who previously held the post of assistant steward. The club has four hand pumps, one of which is dedicated to Wainwright. Michelle is keen to expand the range of cask ales on offer and she has recently been offering ales from breweries new to the club. J.W. Lees and Bowland Brewery beers are being especially well received by customers. Non members are welcome.
give it a ‘welcome facelift’ but still in keeping with the most prominent feature, it’s circular bar. Managers Alan and Christina took on the Forrest Arms five and a half years ago as their first venture in the pub trade and have become well-known members of the local community. A couple of hand pumps feature casks from local breweries such as Bank Top and Cumberland. Heading out towards Chipping, the ALSTON ARMS lies on the left hand side on Inglewhite Road. The Alston is run by Alex who has created a top quality, friendly pub serving traditional country pub food alongside some great real ale from the 4 hand pumps on the bar. The pub has recently been given Cask Marque accreditation. Outside, there is a substantial new build timber frame barn with sliding doors which
open onto a secret garden with festoon lighting, ideal for barbecues. The barn seats up to 40 people on rattan sofas and tables and is suitable for private dining, local club meetings and parties. Back into Longridge, on Derby Road, HOPPY DAYS is another haven for real ale fans and you can read all about it in our article on page 20. A few short steps away, also on Derby Road, is the BULL & ROYAL. A traditional pub with a friendly welcome. The
Bull is thought of highly by its regulars and the beer is of good quality. Being a Thwaites pub, typically available are beers from their range such as Lancaster Bomber, Wainwright and Thwaite’s Original. On Preston Road, the OLD OAK is another traditional community local. The pub continues to support pool and darts teams, hosting quiz and games nights, parties and other events including live music and karaoke. A great place to watch live sport. Theakston cask ales are typically available alongside a regular guest ale. The CORPORATION ARMS on Lower Road (at Hothersall) continues to provide excellent food and quality real ale. 4 hand pumps offer ales from local breweries such as Bowland and Moorhouse’s, as well as others from further afield given the pub’s free of tie status. The quality of the ale, like the food, is consistently good. The pub also host an annual beer festival, and this year, their 11th Beer Festival is planned for the 25th, 26th and 27th May 2018. In my last Longridge Libations, I reported that a premises licence had been applied for on a unit on Stanley Street. This has led to the opening of FULLALOVES WINE BAR at The Old Stables on Stanley Street. Fullaloves is a rustic wine bar serving a wide range of international wines by the glass or bottle, cold bottled beers and lagers, teas, freshly ground coffee, & tapas. On my last visit, no cask real ale was available but beers from Lancaster Brewery were on sale in bottles. DAV E B E L L
hings move quickly sometimes in the pub industry and a lot of what I wrote in the last magazine was ‘Fake News’ by the time you read it. More of that later; first of all, slow news. The latest indication of when the PLAU on Friargate will be opening is June of this year. Apparently, all historical excavation work has been completed and they can now concentrate on getting on with fitting out the business area of the pub. Fast news was that, shortly after Graham had left the MARKET TAVERN in Preston (it closed on January 8th) it soon reopened under the auspices of another of Jeremy’s (of the Continental) tentacles. His Meat and Drink company has taken over the running of the Star Pubs and Bars owned outlet, signing a lease that will allow him to stock two cask beers of his own choice alongside four cask beers that come from the SP&B list. Jeremy has been quoted as saying that they do not want to change much, but they do want to expand the range of drinks available and introduce a food menu using fresh ingredients sourced from the new market. In charge of the pub is Nathan Whitaker who says that eventually they will add a real cider to the six real ales on sale. You
ISSUE 118 SPRING 2018
will also find one familiar face behind the bar in Steve Holt, who must have been involved with more pubs in Preston than anyone else. With all the development work going on in the area, the Market pub looks set to thrive in the future. Another familiar face can be found nearby helping out at the BLACK HORSE round the corner on Friargate. Peter Sayer, ex Preston North End player and one time licensee of the Old Blue Bell, can often be found manning the pumps on Thursday and Friday (and other odd times). Knowledgeable about real ale, he is enjoying dispensing the four Robinson’s beers and
four ever changing guest beers on sale in this classic pub. If you go in now, you will find that the conveniences there been have modernised in taste with the listed status of the pub. By the time you read this, the other development on the new market should be up and running. The ORCHARD, run by Gary Quinn of the Guild Ale House, is expected to be open by the end of February. It is in the top right hand corner, under the canopy of the Victorian structure. It is mainly a ‘craft beer’ pub and initially no real ale will be on sale because of problems with beer cooling, but eventually, when Gary can arrange it, two changing cask ales should appear on the bar. You are probably talking a few months before this will happen, but
you can always get your fix of a range of ever changing real ales in his GUILD ALE HOUSE on Lancaster Road. On Friargate, circumstances at the OLD BLACK BULL have changed again, with none of my writings having come to pass. The lease on this Greene King pub has been taken by The Funky Owl company who also run (among others) the Dublin Packet in Chester. When they took over that pub, they were quoted as saying that they were updating the decor, but not making any huge changes to it. It has always been a classic British pub to enjoy a pint in and that’s what it still will be. If they do the same with the OBB then we will not complain. Making a welcome return as the licensee there is Richard Long who was in charge a year ago when it was being leased by Midland Taverns, so he has some experience of the pub. One of the first things was to get back the sports TV so that there would be some guaranteed hoards of real ale drinkers there several times a week; and, of course, to build up the cask beer sales by introducing a wider range of beers with changing guests to put it back on the map. Up to seven real ales will be on sale, with several sourced from far and wide. A bar refurb should have taken place by now to give the pub a fresher feel and possibly food sales will be introduced at some point. It opens at 11am (12 Sun) until 11pm Mon–Thurs, 12 Fri, and 1am Sat. Good news there. Not so good is the state of my other mis-news in the last issue. Far from looking forward to several real ales at the SUMNERS in Fulwood, we see that Greene King have not leased the pub on, but are actually wanting to sell off the whole premises. I am left wondering if there is any chance of it being sold as a going concern (i.e. a pub) or is it more likely to be sold as a property development, they being the only people who could afford the price and make a profit. This does not look good. It is
currently open in the evenings and at weekend, with one real ale on sale, which was Bateman’s Gold (3.9%) when I looked in, so all is not yet lost. Back on Friargate, the new people at the DOG & PARTRIDGE have been telling me of what they see as the future of the pub. Taking over in January, they want it to be welcoming to all, but especially to people who like ‘rock’ making it the premier Rock Bar of the city, with live bands a major feature. Real ale will not be neglected, with four on the bar, which were initially Doom Bar, Wainwrights, Robinson’s Trooper and Lancaster Blonde but these will rotate and change. Food is not yet on sale but will be eventually. It is open 12–1am Mon–Thurs, and Sun, 12–2am Fri–Sat. One to look forward to is the pub down Avenham Street, off Fishergate, which has been acquired by the Holt Pub co. This pub currently called SoBar, and formally known as Gastons when it had the Little Avenham Brewery on site and before that known as Maguire’s Tavern, will be called BAKER STREET and joins other Holt Pubco owned outlets in our area, such as Th’Owd Smithy in Much Hoole and The Hob Inn in Bamber Bridge. The website says that all their pubs are privately owned freehouses thus ensuring that the choice of drinks is well suited for each specific venue and usually supports local brewers and suppliers. The Preston pub will apparently boast a slick turn of the century theme. Homemade food is a speciality and all their venues have live music every week. There is a lot of work needing to be done on the building, but initial plans are for it to open sometime in March if the work is completed. The name change of the ALE EMPORIUM is coming closer with artwork for the new signage having been completed. It will be known as ‘Mad Hatters’ with the emphasis on hats and not on mad when it does take place. One thing that won’t change is the ever varying range of real ales that are served up on the bar, making it must for real ale drinkers. News from out of town is that the SADDLE at Bartle has reopened under landlord Derek Hunter. He says he is there for the long haul and intends to build up the business. At the moment there is just Wainwrights on, but he intends to widen
the range of Thwaites real ales as sales increase. He has thoroughly spring cleaned the place and re-started food sales including Sunday lunches. Country pubs have been suffering of late, so it is always good to hear of someone prepared to keep fighting to preserve our heritage and we should give him our support. Over at Goosnargh, it seems the HORNS INN and Goosnargh Brewery may be close to being sold. Owner Mark Woods has been looking to retire for a couple of years now, while he and Denise would remain in the area. The pub has been on the market during this time and we hear that negotiations are in hand for its sale to a local business. They want to buy both the pub and the brewery and hopefully continue to run both. We expect to have more news in the next issue. Meanwhile, in Goosnargh village itself, TAP & T’ALES, the new micropub, duly opened on December 14th. Set up by Duncan from the Tap & Vent in Longridge, it is a cosy one roomed former shop with wooden topped tables. With a friendly atmosphere, conversation rules and with its four constantly changing real ales, it is a great addition to the local scene. On my visit I could choose from Bowland Boxer Blonde (4%), Dent Aviator (4%), Titanic Steerage (3.8%) or Plum Porter (4.9%). Prices vary from £3.00 to £3.30 depending on strength. It is closed on Mondays, opening at 4.30–9.30 Tues Wed, 4.30–10 Thurs, 4.30–11 Fri, 2–11 Sat and 2–8 Sun. It also has two real ciders and various lagers etc. Finally, no, I have not got any news on the proposed new micropub on Lune Street, the PLUG & TAP. The owners of the Market Ale House in Leyland still intend to set it up, but there have been some delays in permissions. We will just have to wait. Still, we are used to that aren’t we. Meanwhile, you could always go into 1842’s over the road where four real ales are on sale. There are two permanents in 1842 Pale Ale, a Marston’s badged beer at 3.6%, the Marston’s brewed Wainwrights plus two beers that change monthly, which on my visit were Lancaster Bomber and Wychwood Hobgoblin. I was told that real ale sells well and they were hoping to increase the number of handpulls. It is not all doom and gloom. PAU L R I L E Y www.centrallancs.camra.org.uk
Beer and Cider Festival
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Fri 25th May to Mon 28th May
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Masons Arms 98 HARPERS LANE, CHORLEY PR6 0HU
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4 rooms 2 bars 6 rotating cask ales Gin and wine bar
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Ciders, lagers and spirits Fresh snacks daily Open everyday Free wifi
ENTERTAINMENT COMING SOON
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Sky, BT & Racing Dog friendly Family friendly Monday night quiz
e all know that different beers are... well, different. Colour, aroma, style, and taste being just four of the characteristics that can be used to describe a particular beer. If you have looked closely at the brewery section of the Good Beer Guide, you will notice that some of the beers have tasting notes. Many of these are provided by the breweries themselves. However, some of these notes are accompanied by a beer glass logo, which means the notes have been compiled following feedback from CAMRA’s own tasters. So what is beer tasting and how do we go about it? Read on… The essentials of beer tasting are relatively simple. There is a standard beer tasting card to be completed for each beer (see illustration) with loads of helpful notes on the back. Get a beer, examine it, smell it, drink it and record the details. The details that need to be recorded fall into two distinct areas. The first of these covers factual information. This includes: • date of tasting and in which pub • brewery and beer name, including OG or ABV if known • style, i.e. mild, bitter, golden ale, etc • method of dispense, handpump, gravity, etc • colour – with 11 colours ranging from black to straw • clarity – bright, clear, hazy or cloudy • type of head – tight or loose, large or small (or none if drinking in the south) • beer temperature (approx) • level of carbonation Most of these things are fairly clear and the experienced drinker will have no difficulty in deciding what information needs to be recorded. Sometimes it can be tricky trying to decide whether a beer is golden rather than yellow, or which of the 5 different versions of what might easily be described as a brown beer is the
best description, but most of the time this part is simple. The really interesting bit comes when you move on to trying to put a proper description on the beer. Firstly, you need to consider the aroma of the beer. Some have virtually none while others will have strong aromas. This normally applies at opposite ends of the scale, with pale beers often displaying citrus (fruit) and hoppy aromas, while with stouts and porters the likely aromas will be roast, malt and caramel. Then move on to taste – both the initial taste and the aftertaste that occurs anytime between 20 seconds and up to 3 minutes later. They will often be different, with an increase or reduction in a noted flavour. Finally, you are asked to provide a description or tasting note. This can be as simple or as complex as you think fit. Sometimes a few words such as “packing a real hop punch” is all you need, other times you may wish to take a leaf out of the “Jilly Goulden school of wine tasting”, and wax lyrical about subtleties you have noticed. The important thing is that there is no right or wrong answer or description. Different people will detect different things about the same beer. Some of us are more sensitive to certain tastes or aromas. When you’ve completed your card for a particular beer this is then returned to a Regional Co-ordinator (either send the hard copy or enter the details via WhatPub). All the different tasting cards for any given beer are then amalgamated and from these one standard description is drawn up. This should even out the discrepancies between different tasters palates and different batches of the same beer. Before you can make a start on tasting, you have to be trained. This is a really fun way of spending a couple of hours – sitting around a table with some like minded individuals getting stuck into samples of varying types of beer and trying to agree what it is you are tasting. We don’t really have enough trained tasters locally and are looking to increase the numbers – although please note that you do have to be a CAMRA member before you can do this. A few members have already expressed an interest and we will be arranging some training later in the year (hopefully during late spring or summer). If you would be interested please contact me for further information. Beer tasting isn’t for everybody and you cannot do it every time you go for a drink. It isn’t suited to an evening with friends in a noisy environment, but if you enjoy the odd solitary pint, it can be an ideal excuse for going to the pub – as if you need one! ADRIAN SMITH www.centrallancs.camra.org.uk
ews is a bit thin on the ground from the Chorley area this time round with everything of note relating to the town centre. When the latest edition of the Good Beer Guide came out last September, one of our pubs notched up a notable landmark. POTTERS ARMS on Brooke Street in Chorley clocked up 20 consecutive years in the guide. It is the longest current run and matches those of TOWNELEY ARMS, Longridge (1976–1995) and DOLPHIN, Longton
(1975–1994). This run is some way short of the astonishing 33 years achieved by ROYAL OAK, Whittle-le-Woods (1977–2009). In an era where pubs change hands regularly and with so many new cask ale led pubs appearing it is becoming much more difficult to keep a presence in CAMRA’s most prestigious publication, so this is a quite remarkable achievement. Steve & Denise Potter have been running the pub all this time and have been stalwart supporters of CAMRA. A special certificate was presented to the pub in January on one of the branch social evenings. The same evening we also visited the ALE STATION for the Winter Pub of the Season presentation. As usual we were able to enjoy an excellent selection of ales and also a curry supper – always a favourite combination. It has been a busy time in Chorley for presentations, with the launch of the Chorley Ale Trail being just the previous Friday, but it has given our Preston based members a good excuse to visit the town (if they needed one). A small piece in a local paper has notified us that another micropub may well be opening up in the town. An application has been
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SOUTH RIBBLE SNIPPETS
BROADFIELD ARMS (Leyland) – Has recently reopened after a refurbishment. The pub is now owned by the Blind Tiger Inns pubco which in January celebrated the first anniversary since it was created. Other pubs they own include the Wishing Well At Tardy Gate and the Talbot At Euxton. Although their website does show cask ale is served, a recent visit found none available. SEVEN STARS (Leyland) – Has recently re-opened after a refurbishment although from the pictures on their Facebook page, lots of shiny keg fonts and no real ale. ORIGINAL SEVEN STARS (Leyland) – Is again closed and being advertised as up for sale. TRADES HALL CLUB (Bamber Bridge) – Has a new steward Matt Bickerton, who was previously the deputy steward. He intends to keep three real ales on handpump, and in the near future is hoping that the club will have a permanent own brand beer. PEAR TREE (Penwortham) – Has new licensees who took over in December. Changes include the availability of live music acts every Friday and a new food menu. Previous landlord Tim Hughes has gone to the Red Lion at Ashton-in-Makerfield. Two real ale casualties have also been reported in the area with RAILWAY AT LEYLAND and PUMP & TRUNCHEON (Bamber Bridge) understood to be no longer selling real ale.
made to convert a former hairdressers at the top end of Pall Mall adjacent to the Big Lamp into a micropub/ bar. Nothing further is known but it would make a useful addition at that end of town. As we go to press, work has started on the demolition of the former ROYAL OAK HOTEL as part of the town centre regeneration. While acknowledging that the building has stood empty for a number of years it is a shame to see this landmark falling to the wrecking ball – especially to make way for a car park. This former Chester’s Brewery pub dated from the late 1930’s, with the original building having been demolished in 1936 to make way for the new one. A distinctive building, it featured the brewery crest in the stonework and both the hotel and brewery name clearly displayed long after it had closed. There has been a change of licensee at TOASTIE TAVERN, with Kadeem Makin taking over. Meanwhile Richard has moved up to the CROWN (also owned by Toastie Taverns). Apart from the man behind the bar, nothing has changed at either venue. In addition to the Wednesday quiz and the Sunday karaoke, the Crown is now featuring live music on a Friday night once a month. This should feature well known bands on the local pub circuit. ADRIAN SMITH Editors note: Chorley Chatter covers a large area, not just the town centre. Adlington, Brinscall, Croston, Eccleston, Hoghton, Mawdesley & Whittle-le-Woods all fall under the Chorley banner and unfortunately I don’t get to the pubs in these areas as often as I would like. Any news would be appreciated – please email to me.
TRADES HALL CLUB Bamber Bridge 3 Handpumps for real ale Other drinks at bargain prices inc. San Miguel and Warsteiner.
CAMRA members welcome. (Discounted prices on production of valid membership card)
Membership available all year round. Acts on every Saturday. Bingo every Wednesday and Saturday.
154c Station Road, Bamber Bridge, Preston, Lancs. PR5 6TP http://www.trades-hall.co.uk
THE WHEATSHEAF Spendmore Lane, Coppull, Nr Chorley, Lancashire
FREE HOU SE
3 ever changing Cask Ales – including Prospect, Bank Top, Blackedge, Martland Mill & Coach House • Free entertainment: Jukebox (Mon), Pool (Tue), Quiz (Wed) • All major sports shown • Saturday night live music • Sunday – Chase the Ace 12–6pm • Beer garden • Dogs welcome
Monday – Thursday from 3pm
Friday from 2pm
Saturday & Sunday from 12pm
HISTORIC PRESTON PUBS
PART 1 THE CITY CENTRE
FR I A
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F R ID S
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through” structurally difficult. Next door, the FOX & GRAPES was another Matthew Brown outlet. It featured in the GBG in a 17 year unbroken run from 1974 to 1990 and a further 9 times in subsequent years. It was awarded the George Lee Memorial Trophy (GLMT) in 1987/88. It was a very small and narrow pub, and was run for the whole of its 17 year run by George Spencer, a great character with a handlebar moustache and a love of motorbike racing. It closed in 2012 and became the Beachcomber Bar. From here, head up on to Fishergate and turn right. Across the road on the corner of Theatre
former Matthew Brown pubs sat next to each other. The EXCHANGE featured in a couple of the early editions of CAMRA’s Good Beer Guide (GBG). It closed in 2010 and became the Kuckoo Bar. A fairly large pub, it never had such a high reputation for real ale as its next door neighbour, but was a consistent outlet for Matthew Brown real ale and later Scottish & Newcastle including a guest beer before these became widely available. It was often wondered why the two pubs could not be linked into one outlet, but apparently they are built on different levels which would make “knocking
uch has been written about the death of the British pub and the seemingly never ending spate of closures. If you wanted to study one large urban area where the pub landscape has been decimated, you could do worse than look at Preston. I first visited the city (or town as it was then) in the mid 1970’s. As a Londoner, I found a bewildering selection of pubs, emblazoned with strange names such as Matthew Brown, Thwaites and Boddingtons. The pubs were invariably heaving and noisy and I was left with an impression of a lively place, a great ‘drinking town’. Move forward some 40 years and how things have changed and how many of these landmarks have vanished forever. Around the end of World War Two, there were over 365 pubs in the Borough of Preston – one for every day of the year. Urban renewal, slum clearance and road widening schemes have accounted for many of these, while changes to working life, drinking habits and population mix have led to the closure of others. Since CAMRA was founded in the early 1970’s, over half the pub stock in Preston has disappeared and many of these once thriving businesses are just a memory. Fortunately there does exist a good photographic record of these pubs and anyone wishing to explore further is directed to Steve Halliwell’s excellent Pubs In Preston blog. A local resident, Jim Holderness, set out in the late 1980’s to take photographs of the existing pub stock in Preston, recording changes down the years. I discovered a few of his pictures on the internet and finally managed to track down his sister, some years after his death. The photo collection was still in existence and I was able to scan in these pictures for the branch to keep and use as needed. They are too good for us to sit on and this has prompted me to write the first in a series of articles about these long gone pubs. So let’s start our trip down memory lane right in the centre, in an area bounded by Fishergate and Church Street to the south and Corporation Street, Ringway and London Road to the north/east. Towards the west end of this area is Fox Street, where two
TE E R GA
Street stood the THEATRE HOTEL, a Boddington’s pub with a distinctive pale blue tiled exterior. The original 3 storey building that had stood on the site was demolished in 1960 and the new pub built in it’s place. A no frills pub, it had a reputation for serving a great pint of Boddingtons, resulting in 6 GBG entries in the early 1980’s. Our branch chairman recalls it also having a great jukebox and a table football machine. There was a short lived makeover in the early 1980’s before closure in 1987. The building was subsequently demolished to allow for the new shopping development on the south side of Fishergate. A short walk until Fishergate becomes Church Street and turn onto Lancaster Road to reach our next lost pub. The GUILD TAVERN, was a Thwaites house that was at the bottom end of Tithebarn Street. Following the building of the Guild Hall, it was cut off from the rest of the street, and access was by way of
Theatre Hotel Photo by Beth Hayes/ Preston Historical Society
Wards End (by the Stanley Arms). This pub was known as the Central Hotel for most of it’s life, before becoming the Guild Tavern. By 1978, it had been much modernised in a bland style with lounge and games room. At the time of closure in 2006 it was known as Lionels. It is now used for student accommodation and the building bears a sign commemorating it’s former identity. Our next pub sits on the corner of Lord Street and Tithebarn Street and is one of the most recent casualties, having closed in 2016. The TITHEBARN, was originally a Matthew Brown pub although 20 or so years ago it was swapped with the Moor Park on Garstang Road. The Borough Council had bought that in the 1960s for road widening which never happened, so now they let
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Matthew Brown have that in return for the Tithebarn which the Council wanted to make way for its abortive Tithebarn development. With various plans still in place for redevelopment in this area, it seems unlikely that it will ever reopen. Towards the London Road end of Church Street we find our next casualty. The GEORGE HOTEL, was a Thwaites house and up until 1926 it was called the Horse Shoe Hotel. From 1975–1992 it enjoyed an unbroken 18 year run in the GBG, and in 1982/3 became the second winner of the GLMT. In later years there was a pub swap with Mitchells and around this time the name was changed to Shepherds’ Arms, with the pub finally closing in 2001. The building was incorporated into Ted Carters Fishing Tackle shop although it is quite obvious from
AW ST RE ET
1 Exchange 2 Fox & Grapes 3 Theatre Hotel 4 Guild Tavern 5 Tithebarn 6 George Hotel 7 Lamb 8 Kings Arms
first glance that it is a former pub. A fairly plain and basic local, it was a regular drinking haunt for prison officers coming off shift. The George was supposed to be haunted and a documentary was once made for the Discovery Channel. It is rumoured that 2 children were murdered in the cellar in the 1700’s and a previous owner found a gravestone in the cellar underneath which was a ring bearing the name Robert Clay and the year 1786. Poltergeist activity was reported following disturbance of the gravestone during alterations to the cellar and sightings of a tall, gaunt, 18th Century figure in the cellar itself have been reported over the years. A few doors further along was the
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LAMB, and unusually for Preston, a Greenall Whitley pub. Apparently it was originally called the Holy Lamb, and brewed its own beer up until about 1928 when Greenalls bought it. It achieved one GBG entry in 1987 and closed in 1999. The Lamb was probably best known for being Preston’s 7 nights a week live music venue. The Lamb once welcomed stars from bands like 10CC and Simply Red as well as being an important starting ground for hundreds of local musicians. The old frontage has been retained as the building is listed, mainly for its ornate entrance, and the building is now used as student accommodation. Our last port of call is again just a few doors down and round the corner
Kings Arms Photo by Richard Richmond
on Stanley Street. The KINGS ARMS was in latter years a Whitbread pub, having been acquired with the takeover of Threlfall Chester’s Brewery in 1967. Although it was known as the Kings Arms for most of it’s life, the pub had a spell as Joplin’s (and it was under this name that the pub achieved it’s two GBG entries at the end of the 1980’s) before reverting again to Kings Arms. At the time of closure in 1999 it was known as Crossroads. The building then became a fish & chip shop although it is now understood to be empty. ADRIAN SMITH Authors note: There are far too many closed pubs in Preston to cover them all and this series of articles is simply a snapshot of those where we have a decent photograph of the pub. Part 2 in the next issue of Ale Cry will focus on the Avenham Lane area.
100 BEERS & CIDERS
Three days of the best local beers, gourmet sausages, and live music... All proceeds to charity
Fri 4th, Sat 5th & Sun 6th May 2018 Whittingham Club, Preston, PR3 2JE www.whittinghambeerfestival.com
HOPPY DAYS WINS THE GEORGE LEE
he George Lee Memorial Trophy is the branch’s premier award, being given annually to the pub, individual or organisation that has done the most for real ale over the previous 12 months. As is our custom, voting took place at the branch Christmas social, which this year was held at the Black Horse in Preston. Six pubs had been put forward, with Longridge’s HOPPY DAYS winning by a narrow margin from GUILD ALE HOUSE (Preston). The other nominations were MASONS ARMS (Chorley), GOLDEN TAP (Leyland) & BLACK HORSE & OLD VIC (Preston). Special mention should be made of the Guild Ale House, which has just missed out two years running in this competition. It is over 20 years since a Longridge pub has won this award (the only previous winner being the Forrest Arms in 1997) and comes at a time when there has been an upswing in the town’s fortunes as a real ale destination. Hoppy Days is the brainchild of Peace Townsend and has only been in existence just over a year. Previously a photographer’s shop, the conversion work was done by husband Adam, with the pub opening it’s doors in October 2016. With a simple interior, bench seating along the walls and stools around plain tables, this is typical of many of the new breed of micropubs and works well as a dedicated ale house. The cellar is essentially a large ‘cupboard’ off the rear corridor and overflow barrels will often be seen stored under the benches in the bar area. With five handpumps on the bar, the beer options are cask only with a small number of bottled beers also available. Each of the five handpumps is usually dedicated to a particular style of beer; pale
session, golden, amber/brown bitter, dark (stout/mild or porter) and speciality. This gives a good spread of ales and pretty much guarantees there will be something for everyones’ taste. While many of the beers available will come from smaller local micro breweries, there is always the chance of finding something from far afield. There are also three changing ciders and all these selections are displayed on a chalk board above the bar together with the prices. While the wide range of beers is clearly an attractive feature of this little pub, it’s the wide range of other activities that really recommended it as a GLMT winner. They have introduced a home brewers forum for like minded individuals to get together to discuss their hobby and no doubt get inspiration from the beers on the bar. There have been regular Tap Takeovers, with a number of brewers taking the opportunity to showcase a wide range of their ales. With a number of locals wanting to learn Spanish, they found someone willing to do some teaching and introduced a series of practical Spanish classes in the pub. Despite the limited number of seats they have introduced a ‘Quick Quiz’ on a Monday night. This really shows the effort that has been made to make this pub a real part of the local community, rather than just a place to go for a beer. The presentation of the trophy took place on 1st February in front
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of a good number from the branch and a strong turn out of locals. As usual there was a varied selection of beers in excellent condition. There had been a ‘Science of Brewing’ evening earlier that week with a speaker from Lancaster Brewery and three of their beers were still on the bar. These were two of the seasonal ‘Tales from the Brewhouse’ beers – Toru and Boadicea and the regularly brewed Red. Supplementing these were Northern Brewery Underdog – a dangerously drinkable 6.0% treacle porter and Crankshaft LEV2 – a 4.5% NZ style IPA. Between us I think we tried everything on the bar and were in agreement that the quality was superb. So congratulations to Peace and the team on winning the George Lee Memorial Trophy for 2018. If you haven’t yet visited this little gem, there is a regular bus service from Preston (Stagecoach No.1), so it’s easy enough to get to. There is often something going on, so check out their Facebook page for details. ADRIAN SMITH
THE POTTERS ARMS BROOK STREET, CHORLEY
Thee Bs Doff Cocker Black Sheep Best Bitter + Guest ales from local breweries
Don’t miss Tuesday All cask ales £1.99 A real pub with darts, dominoes, pool, and a real fire
Stephen and Denise have been glad to welcome good beer lovers for over 25 years at the POTTERS.
Advert – PottersArms (Half) 117.indd 1
20 years in the Good Beer Guide
Darwen (and Blackburn)
ooking for somewhere to go for our annual Christmas/New Year jaunt, we quickly discounted Blackburn, for there has been little to entice the real ale enthusiast to go there for quite some time. Darwen was a different proposition though. A quick look on WhatPub showed a few things of interest, so it became our destination for the day. We went by train from Preston, changing at Blackburn for the short seven minute journey from there and alighted at Darwen Station. Our numbers were somewhat depleted, due to the ravages of flu and other ailments, but those that made it were ready to enjoy the anticipated delights.
We passed under the railway line and made the short walk down Railway Road. to reach our first stop. This was the OLD CHAPEL, on your left. It is a Wetherspoon’s conversion of a former Methodist Chapel, and a nice job they have made of it. Quite what the old teetotal followers of Methodism would have thought of all that drinking going on in their former place of worship I do not know. For us, though, it was a welcome start. Impressive outside, the inside retains its upstairs balcony, with part of the original wooden seating visible alongside the modern fixtures. The bar is on your right with plenty of seating and quieter areas spread throughout the ground floor. As usual, there was a fair selection of real ales, but, it being Christmastide, several of them were Santa themed. Three Moorhouse’s beers were on sale including a house beer at 4%, Pendle Witch, and a Santa’s Special, plus 3B’s Santa’s Skinful also 4%, Naylor’s Santa’s Darkside at 4.4% and Stonehenge Rudolf at 5%. At £2.29 a pint it is good value, but I prefer the summer drinks which tend to be lighter in all senses of the word. We did not have far to go for our next drink. Straight over the road is the TAPS,
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not got real ale on there. Going back down to Railway Road by way of Church Terrace and Bank Street turn left on Church Street where you will soon come to the BRIDGEWATER, a Stonegate owned pub. Occupying what was once a cinema in a former life, it is a large comfortable pub reminiscent of a Wetherspoon’s conversion. Six real ales are usually on sale and on our visit there were three beers from Naylor’s brewery: Yellow Snow (4./3%) at £2.40, Resolution (4.4%) and Xmashed (5.5%) at £2.85, plus Blonde Witch from Moorhouse’s and Robinson’s Mr. Scrooge (4.3%). Very reasonable meals were available and there
a small bar that specialises in craft beers, cocktails and wine, but does sell one cask beer. It is usually a beer from the Doghouse brewery, from Darwen itself and on our visit it was their 4.2% bitter, made with British hops. Very good it was too, costing £3.20 a pint. Besides the seating in the bar, there is more room in an upstairs gallery. As is the case in many micropubs, Taps does not open on Monday, but other days it is open noon till midnight (1–10pm Sun). Tapas and street food is available. Leaving here, we went back over the road and went up Green Street East to Entwistle Street where we turned right and shortly found our next pub, the ENTWISTLE HOTEL. A large locals pub with a couple of rooms off the bar area, it is run by Bravo Inns, based in Warrington. They manage forty community pubs in the North West and are committed to breathing life back into them, many of which were closed before they stepped in. The Entwistle has two real ales which on our visit were Sharp’s Doom Bar and Atlantic, but other beers such as Lancaster Blonde have made appearances. A very reasonable price of £2 a pint certainly helps to build a community local and there were a few people in taking advantage of these low prices. Bravo Inns run one pub in Preston, the New Fleece on Meadow Street, but unfortunately they have
are plenty of TV screens showing sports. It opens at 9am (10am Sun) and stays open late Thursday to Saturday, making it a smart meeting place in the centre of town. Coming out we turned left on to the main road and then left again up Bridge Street where about 100 yards up on your left you will arrive at the brewery tap of Hopstar Brewery of Darwen, the NUMBER 39. A small micropub specialising in their own products, it is a double award winner for both beer and cider with new brews tried out here first. Besides Smokey Joe’s Black Beer (3.9%) we could try Offt Mill(3.9%) at £2.30 a pint, JC (4.1%) and Rudolph’s Best Bitter (4.2%) plus a cider. Besides these, there is a wide range of bottled continental and world beers. There is live music weekly but it is a TV free zone so talking is paramount. It opens noon till midnight. Barry Tyson, the owner and brewer came in whilst we were there and had a conversation with us. He told us that a short walk from here was
his other brewery tap, the BLACK HORSE. As it was after 4pm (its opening time on a Thursday), we decided to up sticks and head for there. Coming out, we turned left and headed up Redearth Road. for about 200 yds passing the Crown (to which we would return) to go in the Black Horse. Although usually selling four Hopstar beers and having regular end of month beer festivals, we were disappointed to find no such beers ready to sell to us (they must have had a busy Christmas?) so we quickly left and returned downhill and went in the previously mentioned CROWN. Described as a lively pub with live music and karaoke, at 4pm we were the only customers (though people did start to come in before we left). Four real
ales were on the menu and we could choose from St. Austell Tribute (4.2%) at £2.60, Hobgoblin (4.5%), Robinson’s Trooper (4.7%) and Doghouse IPA (5.5%). These change regularly at this Punch owned pub, so there could be anything on. It opens at noon. After one drink we decided to return to Number 39 for further Hopstar beers, having missed out at the Black Horse. Here we made the decision to head home, but not before trying a bar none of us had visited before, Blackburn’s very own micropub. It did not take long to return to Darwen station and catch the train for the short journey to Blackburn, where we had to change trains anyway. Blackburn has a reputation as being a bit of a beer desert with only the occasional oasis such as Wetherspoon’s Postal Order, so this new bar on King William Street more or less opposite the Town Hall is a welcome addition. The DRUMMER’S ARMS is a five minute walk from the station. Go through the Cathedral gardens and (if the shopping centre is shut) go round by Debenhams up the open walkway to reach the pub on your left. James and Kate Quayle are the owners of this family run business which, besides the Drummer’s, involves running bars at festivals, outdoor events and weddings etc so they have plenty of experience. It was certainly welcomingly warm on our visit, quite busy (as you would expect) with five real ales on sale. We had a choice on our
visit of Three B’s Stokers Slake (3.6%) at £2.50 a pint, £1.30 a half, Lytham Blonde (3.8%) Hopstar Rudolphs (4.2%) and two Big Clock beers: Bitter and Twisted (4.3%) and Zeus 5.5%). It was a fine way to finish off a good day out. Oh, and in the gents, the urinal is a bucket! Opening times are 12–8 Mon–Thur and12–10 Fri–Sun. We returned to the Station and did not have long to wait for our return train to Preston. You can travel on the Colne or York train from Preston for the 25 minute ride to Blackburn, changing there to the Manchester bound train for the eight minute short hop to Darwen. The return fare, allowing you to break your journey back at Blackburn, is currently £7.00. Buying two separate tickets for the journey is, on this occasion, more expensive, so a through ticket is recommended. You can get there on the bus, changing at Blackburn, but it takes a lot longer. PAU L R I L E Y
CAMRA CENTRAL LANCASHIRE BRANCH AND …
FORGOTTEN PUB NAMES
n the CAMRA Central Lancashire branch area we have a great variety of pub names. There are pubs that have traditional names which date back hundreds of years, and there are pubs that have modern names which could really only exist in the present day. In the years since CAMRA was founded, new pubs have opened (often with topical names), while there have also been an even greater number of pubs where a name change has been deemed appropriate. Some pub names from this period are soon forgotten, while other pub names from the recent past can never be forgotten. It may be a case of the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, but here are a few of the more obscure or offbeat pub names that have been in use (and that have since vanished) while CAMRA has been in existence:
Sportsman, a fun pub complete with the dummy of a climber scaling the front of the building. It was soon back as the Fighting Cock, but was closed in 2004, and then demolished two years later to make way for student accommodation.
DINGMAN In 1985 a new pub was opened on Golden Hill Lane in Leyland. Being close to a former Leyland Motors factory it was decided to give it an appropriate name, the Dingman,
Blob Shop www.chorleyinnsandtaverns.blogspot.co.uk
BLOB SHOP For many years Chorley had a Yates’s Wine Lodge on Market Street. About 20 years ago the Yates’s Group decided that it wanted a new image for some of its pubs, and the Chorley branch was one of the many to be re-named as Blob Shop, the name coming from the renowned Australian White Wine
which apparently was a job title used within the vehicle manufacturing industry. Unfortunately it was a term not particularly used in Lancashire and hardly anyone had heard of it. In quick succession the pub was re-named the Hogshead, then the Hogs, then the Cherry Tree, and finally the Old Leyland Gates, the latter at last being an acceptable reference to the importance of Leyland Motors.
EINSTEIN’S THEORY concoction that Yates’s sold. The pub later had a spell as I.D. (The Place To Be), and coming right up-to-date it is now known as Pearsons.
Located on Moor Lane in Preston, this was a pub that ended its days with a succession of name changes. Originally the Cross Keys, a name inherited from a
DANGEROUS SPORTSMAN The Boatman’s Arms on Marsh Lane in Preston was so named because of its location close to the basin of the Lancaster Canal. It later became the Fighting Cock, and for a short period of time was the Dangerous
nearby closed Matthew Brown pub, its later guises included the Raven, the Rat & Raven, and the Rat & Parrot. Perhaps wanting an association with the University of Central Lancashire, it then took on the name Einstein’s Theory and cryptically was also known as E=MC2. The pub closed in 2005 and was demolished in 2007.
ISSUE 118 SPRING 2018
GASTON’S Previously known as Maguire’s Tavern, this pub on Avenham Street in Preston was for some reason given a French name in the 1980s. It very soon established itself as Preston’s premier real ale outlet, and in 1992 became a brewpub with Little Avenham beers being produced on the premises. Inevitably the good times were not to last, with the microbrewery being re-located, and the pub reverting to being called Maguires. It later became the City Bar, and for a time was a nightclub before it closed down, with the building then falling into disrepair. Good news in 2018 is that it may soon be re-opening as a pub.
PERCY BRAITHWAITE’S LAST STAND This was a pub situated on the ground floor of what is now the Preston Holiday Inn. Assumedly the name was an attempt at stereotypical Lancashire humour, inspired by Bill Tidy’s Fosdyke Saga which was a popular cartoon strip in the 1970s. Not surprisingly the pub only lasted a few years before being closed.
ROONEY’S For many years this pub on Fylde Road in Preston had a dual personality, being known as the Princess Alexandra as well as an alternative name the ‘Ole in the Wall. It became a destination for real ale drinkers in the 1990s when it became the Tap & Spile, but this proved to be relatively short lived. It was subsequently re-launched as Rooney’s (this being several years before the football world had heard of Wayne Rooney), but very quickly it was back as the ‘Ole in the Wall. It closed in 2000 and was another pub converted into student accommodation.
For a time it appeared that any pub changing its name had to take on an Irish identity. The Withy Trees in Bamber Bridge had long provided confusion due to
an Irish identity include DICEY RILEY’S in Chorley (previously Sapphires nightclub), and MIGHTY MULDOON’S in Preston (now back under its proper name the Wheatsheaf).
its close proximity to the similarly named Old Original Withy Trees. A solution was found with it being Irishified and renamed Shifty O’Shea’s. Possibly this was not a great success, with it soon being re-named the Top House, and since 2011 it has prospered as the Withy Arms, these days a choice real ale outlet. Interestingly the practice of pubs being given Irish names is not a modern phenomenon. Go back 150 years and there was a pub in Preston called Amby Power, this being the name of a popular Irish entertainer of the day. In more recent years other pubs which have also temporarily taken on
In 1998 a new pub was built on the Deepdale Retail Park on the outskirts of Preston. Being close to the Toys R Us store it was inventively named the Toy Soldier. It was to be a pub beset by problems, and after a promising start it soon fell into decline. It closed in 2006, and was demolished the following year to make way for a fast food outlet.
WEIRD ARMS The former Leigh Arms & Station was another pub with a dual personality. Depending on which entrance you used you could be entering the Leigh Arms (from Chapel Street) or the Station Hotel (from Railway Street). This was also a pub that was to have a number of name changes, having spells as the Fox & Grapes, and as Gossips, but most memorably it was
known for a time in the 1980s as the Weird Arms. In this manifestation it was a fun pub complete with a mock-horror internal décor of skeletons and fake cobwebs, etc. Back as the Leigh Arms & Station the pub closed in 2016 and the following year it was demolished to make way for Chorley’s new Youth Zone.
Gossips Alan Winfield www.neverendingpubcrawl.blogspot.co.uk
I have deliberately not included any current offbeat pub names, but a future version of this article could easily be written to include pub names like POPWORLD, the SHED, SHENANIGANS and SHIPS & GIGGLES. I think it’s true to say that every pub name tells a story, and long may it be that there are pub names around that continue to be a source of some amusement. GORDON SMALL
Ale Cry visits… Coppull
ur latest Ale Cry sponsored tour took us to Coppull. It is an area not much frequented by the Preston based members of our branch, so it was an opportunity to find out more about this small dormitory township of some 8,000 people south of Chorley. The area once was a centre of industry, with several collieries, and mills employing many people. All have since closed, with the last pit, Ellerbeck, closing in 1965, leaving Coppull as a satellite town for both Chorley and Wigan. Picking up a few Chorleyites on the way, we eventually reached our first pub, THE WHEATSHEAF. At Westerton Court on Spendmore Lane, it is an attractively looking large red brick building which reopened in 2014 after being shut for three years. It was bought by a local building company, Inglenorth Contracting, run by the parents
of the pub’s manager, Joanne. They have given the pub an extensive refurbishment, leaving it with a warm, bright and smart interior that is a credit to their vision. It is a genuine free house with three handpumps dispensing an ever changing selection of real ales, often from local micros. On our visit we could choose from Rat Brewery’s White Rat (4%), Withnell’s Hoppy Fettler (4.3%) and Wychwood Hobgoblin (4.5%) all at £2.95 a pint, with beers from Problem Child and Northern Monkey coming next. The pub has a central bar with a games room to the right and an extensive beer garden and smoking area to the rear. There is frequent live music on Saturdays (occasionally Friday) and sports TV, plus a quiz night every Wednesday. Opening hours are from 3pm Mon–Thurs, 2pm Fri, and noon Sat & Sun. It was a good start to the night. From here, we moved on to Coppull Hall Lane where we came to the PRINTER’S
ISSUE 118 SPRING 2018
ARMS. Finding a pleasant multi roomed pub with a separate games room, we were welcomed by licensee Chris Orrell. The pub is leased from Admiral Taverns by Bailey Leisure, who run several Chorley pubs, including the Flat Iron and the White Bull. There were two handpumps on the bar, but Chris told us that he was hoping to put two more on to increase the choice. Our two on the night were Moorhouse’s White Witch (3.9%) and Marston’s 61 Deep (3.8%) both at £2.80 a pint. Sports TV features with a large screen and live music is on a couple of times a month (Fri/Sat). Chris told us that by March they will be doing Sunday lunches with pub food during the week. There is a large grassed drinking area to the front. Opening times are from three during the week and noon at weekends. It was soon time to move on to the next pub. Travelling forward along to Spendmore Lane again, you come to the SPRINGFIELD on your right. Once owned by Burtonwood (and before that by Almond’s of Standish), it now belongs to Marston’s. A traditional style pub, there is a single bar on your right as you enter, and a separate small room to the front and a big room on your left. There is a pool table area towards the back, beyond which there is a garden and smoking area. Two real ales are on sale, with Jenning’s Cumberland (4% and £3.05 a pint) a regular plus one other beer from the Marston range. This night it was Hobgoblin (4.5% and £3.10 a pint). Thursday is a games night in the Coppull area and a match was on with a visiting team, making this by far the busiest pub that we visited that night. Sports TV again featured. This pub is open from noon all days.
Our final pub was one that several of us had been to before, it having been a regular in the Good Beer Guide for many years. It is the RED HERRING on Mill Lane, owned and run by Big Ste(ve). In the past described as an oasis in a beer desert, it is no longer the only real ale pub around there, but it is still worth a visit, both for the beer and also for the range of domestic groceries and foods on sale at extremely low prices, proceeds of which go to help the food banks of the area and subsidise other things in the pub. Situated in the former offices of the next door mill, it was converted to a pub many years ago. The Coppull Mill was opened in 1906 and along with its sister Mavis Mill once employed over 700 workers. It never recovered from the cotton shortages of the First Word War and was taken over by the Lancashire Cotton Corporation in the 1930s and passed on to Courtaulds in 1964. Subsequently production of yarns was moved overseas and the mill was eventually decommissioned. It now houses several small businesses. The pub itself comprises of a large single room with the bar on the right plus an extension and it has a large first floor function room. There is a pub garden and smoking area and a pond opposite which is very popular with anglers. TV sports fans are catered for and there are regular music nights and barbecues feature. Up to five changing real ales are usually available often from micros. Four were on for our visit: Lancaster Blonde (4%), Crossbay Sunset (4.2%), Marston’s 61 Deep (3.8%) and Wells Bombardier Burning Gold (4.1%). Prices vary from £2.90 to £3.20, depending on strength. It was a good ending to our night in Coppull as we left in time for us all to catch our last buses home. In fact some of us managed to get a drink in at the Guild Ale House in Preston before we went home. Coppull is not on a direct bus route from Preston, but is easily reachable from Chorley by catching the number 362 Wigan service at the bus station for the 11 minute ride to Coppull. Fairly regular throughout the day, it is hourly in the evenings with late buses back to Chorley at 2207 and 2327. PAU L R I L E Y
Project2_Layout 1 18/01/2017 11:09 Page 1
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CHORLEY ALE TRAIL
egular readers of this magazine will have noticed in recent years that Chorley has become one of the leading towns for Real Ale in the north-west. To celebrate this, to spread the word and to encourage people to come to the town to see what there is on offer, the branch has been working on a Chorley Ale Trail for some time. The ‘trail’ was launched at a packed Malt‘n’Hops on 12th January. Our chairman, Dave Bell, introduced the trail and spoke briefly about what a good ale town Chorley had become. Councillors Alastair Bradley and Danny Gee were present for the launch and Alastair spoke a few words of thanks for this initiative. The trail is a handy pocket sized leaflet, with details, including pictures, of the pubs on the trail, together with a map showing the locations. The whole purpose of the trail is to encourage people to visit the town using public transport, so we needed to restrict the pubs on the trail to those within a reasonable walk of the centre. We also needed a map, which imposed further restrictions on us. After much deliberation we settled on an area bounded by Market Street, Brooke Street, Eaves Lane and Harpers Lane. There
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are currently 22 pubs serving real ale in this area, which should keep even the most hardened drinker going for a day or two. Given the way the town spreads, there are a small number of pubs serving real ale in Chorley that had to be omitted. Unlike some other trails out there, there is no set route round the pubs and no prizes for visiting them all. It is simply designed to showcase the great variety of pubs and real ales that Chorley has to offer. Those of you reading this who live in Chorley will no doubt be familiar with most of the pubs featured in the leaflet. How about paying a visit to those that are a bit off your normal circuit to see what they are like. For those of you who do not know Chorley – why not pay us a visit? The leaflets are available to pick up from any of the pubs on the trail (stocks permitting) as well as other outlets around the branch area and beyond. A downloadable PDF version of the leaflet is also available on our website for those of you who cannot find a hard copy, together with updates to the pub details as we become aware of them. Go to www. centrallancs.camra.org.uk/viewnode. php?id=64000 for details. Feedback to this venture has been very positive so far and we will look at the
possibility of doing something similar for other parts of our area – time and funds permitting. In the meantime, why not visit Chorley and follow the trail? ADRIAN SMITH
Branch Diary Monday 5th March Committee Meeting at Shepherds’ Hall Ale House, Chorley (7.30) Thursday 22nd March Branch Social at Withy Arms, Bamber Bridge Saturday 24th March Brewery Trip to Farm Yard Ales, Cockerham. Leaving Chorley at 11:30, picking up in Preston. Return for approx 6pm
Discount Pubs All over the country, hundreds of pubs are offering a discount to card carrying CAMRA members. These pubs deserve your support and listed below are the ones in our branch area that we believe are offering a discount. Adelphi, Preston
Ancient Oak, Cottam
20p per pint, except Mon when discount is for all customers
Anderton Arms, Fulwood
20p per pint, except Mon when discount is for all customers
Thursday 12th April Ale `Cry Distribution Trip to Lytham. Minibus from Preston 7.15, return for 10.45
Bamber Bridge Football Club
20p per pint
Bay Horse, Euxton
Thursday 26th April Branch Social and Pub of the Season presentation at Masons Arms, Chorley (7.45)
Black Bull, Fulwood
20p per pint, except Mon when discount is for all customers
Black Bull, Penwortham
20p per pint
Bob Inn, Chorley
20p per pint
Grey Friar, Preston
50p per pint using a Wetherspoon’s token
Guild (Fylde Rd), Preston
25p per pint
50p per pint on Goosnargh Brewery beers
Monday 4th June Committee Meeting at Malt‘n’Hops, Chorley (7.30)
Lane Ends, Ashton
Leyland Lion, Leyland
50p per pint using a Wetherspoon’s token
Thursday 14th June AGM at Black Horse, Preston
Nabs Head, Samlesbury
20p per pint
Old Black Bull, Preston
20p per pint off guest beers
Old Vic, Preston
50p per pint using a Wetherspoon’s token except Thu when real ale is discounted for all customers
Pear Tree, Penwortham
20p per pint
20p per pint Sun-Tues, 10p per pint Wed-Sat
Poachers, Bamber Bridge
Preston Grasshoppers RFC
Prince of Wales, Cowling Brow, Chorley
Prince Of Wales New Market Street, Chorley
Roper Hall, Preston
Sir Henry Tate, Chorley
50p per pint using a Wetherspoon’s token
Smiths Arms, Lea Town
20p per pint, 10p per half pint
Trades Hall Club & Institute, Bamber Bridge
Twelve Tellers, Preston
50p per pint using a Wetherspoon’s token
Walton Fox, Bamber Bridge
20p per pint
Up to 25p per pint
Thursday 5th April Committee Meeting at Ale Emporium, Preston
Monday 14th May Committee Meeting at Black Bull, Penwortham Thursday 24th May Treasure Hunt, Preston – starting at Guild Ale House (7.30)
All meetings start at 8pm unless shown. Trips For further details and to book, contact Dave Linley on 07981 518506 or email email@example.com
With a print run of 6,000 and magazines available in pubs and clubs across the area and beyond, an advert in Ale Cry is probably the best value targeted advertising around.
Advert prices Quarter page: £55 Half page: £95 Full page: £175 Back page: £195 (not currently available) For further details contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
The next issue of Ale Cry will be published on 1st June 2018. Copy deadline is 1st May 2018.
For complaints about issues such as short measures, contact: Lancashire County Council Trading Standards County Hall, Pitt Street Preston, PR1 0LD. T: 0345 404 0506
ISSUE 118 SPRING 2018
Wellington (Glovers Ct.), Preston 10% Wings & Beer, Preston
If you know of a pub offering a discount that is not listed here, or one is listed that no longer offers a discount, please let us know. If you are a licensee and are interested in joining the scheme then please contact email@example.com
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a year. That’s less than a pint a month!
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Protect the traditions of great British pubs and everything that goes with them by joining today at www.camra.org.uk/joinup
Alternatively you can send a cheque payable to CAMRA Ltd with your completed form, visit www.camra.org.uk/joinus, or call 01727 798440.* All forms should be addressed to Membership Department, CAMRA, 230 Hatfield Road, St Albans, AL1 4LW.
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Ale Cry 118, the Spring 2018 edition of the CAMRA Central Lancashire magazine