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E E R F & CA SK FO RC E No.151

Winter 2009/2010

Another Successful Norwich Beer Festival!

West Norfolk Retrospective

Norwich Beer Festival 2009 roundup

Norfolk’s True Heritage Pubs part four

Music and Beer

Mild Beer styles


Newsletter of the Norfolk Branches of the Campaign for Real Ale

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Chris and Glynis invite you to the

Trafford Arms 17th Valentine Beer Festival

8th to 14th February 2010

“To drink or not to drink� Raising money for the Hamlet Centre

61 Grove Road, Norwich 01603 628466


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NORFOLK NIPS | Chairman’s Bits

What Recession? ell that’s what we thought when we saw the amount of customers at our recent Norwich Beer Festival. It seemed with all our trials and tribulations with the credit crunch everybody wanted to have a good time. Martin Ward comments later on the outcome of the Beer Festival but overall everybody seemed to have enjoyed themselves. We certainly did and it was very pleasing to see our regular and new customers. At the Beer Festival we launched our LocAle Scheme which encourages Pubs to sell beers from local Breweries. More details follow and we hope our local


Pubs will participate in the Scheme. Even at this time of the year we are now asking for nominations for the Good Beer Guide 2011 and all Pubs will be considered. We of course need your help with the Pub surveys which we know you all enjoy doing and is essential for the preparation of the Guide. The Cask Ale Report has been released and is encouraging news for the Real Ale industry. I was pleased to note that over the last year the number of women who drink Cask Ale has more than doubled which is a staggering result for some-

All the best from the West ’d like to start by thanking Tim for everything he’s done over the last 9 years, and look forward to his Norwich pub crawl on the 19th December. As the year comes to an end its time to reflect on what’s been a busy year in the west. Several brewery trips including a very enjoyable weekend at Belvoir brewery, Old Dalby and the pub visits in Melton Mowbray. We’ve seen Membership remain steady, attendance at branch meetings double ( although we would still like to see more of you), Real ale sales increase in our area and


an increase in the amount of beer festivals, or is this just I’ve attended more ( 15 this year I think ). The 2 breweries that closed have reopened, Bullbox and Brancaster. Yes a good year and I look forward to the next one. May you all have a good Christmas and get what you want (bottles of real ale) or even a barrel. And have a Happy New Year spent with good company, good ale, in a good pub. All the best from the west. Phil Buffham (buff) Chairman of West Norfolk CAMRA

thing that's generally held up as a “man's drink”. Maybe prettier glasses helped. Going back to the recession I know the difficulties our Pub trade is facing and the increase in VAT next month won’t help. We must support our Pubs and rather than drinking at home why not visit your local Pub instead otherwise we may lose it forever. Finally on behalf of our Branch I would like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Graham Freeman Chairman Norwich & Norfolk CAMRA

Got a short pint? If you believe that you have been treated unfairly in a pub, club or bar, you should contact the Trading Standards service by writing to them at Norfolk Trading Standards Service, County Hall, Martineau Lane, Norwich, NR1 2UD or faxing them on 01603 222999. A wide range of consumer information and advice is also available online from the Consumer Direct website at

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26 St Leonards Road Norwich NR1 4BL 01603 618734

A real gem, well worth a visit.

Eight real ales to choose from, two of which change regularly.

Lovely enclosed beer garden with large sheltered smoking area.

Two pooltables upstairs.

Only a ten minute walk from the train station and city centre.

Pork pies and other light snacks available all day.

Open all day from 12 noon everyday.

Hog roast available sundays.

Sky Sports and ESPN

We would like to wish all Norfolk Nips readers a Happy Christmas and a prospeous new year.

The Sandboy

Gayton Road, Bawsey, Kings Lynn PE32 1EP Beer Garden and Play area Function room available Monday Karaoke Tuesday Country and Western club Wednesday Salsa dancing with Salsa Negra Thursday Quiz and Curry Night Friday Live Music Saturday Party Night Sunday Carvery

Tel: 01553 630527 6

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Ample parking is available Camping and Caravan pitches available Opening times : 11:00am till 11:00pm Every day At the Sandboy we offer a choice of both traditional food and Thai food. We have an extensive choice of food from Sandwiches, Pub Classics, Grill, Fish, and Curries. All our food is homemade using ingredients sourced locally where possible. Our Thai food is cooked by Somphit and is also optionally available as a takeaway.

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NORFOLK NIPS | Chairman’s Bits continued

Tim Spitzer; thanks for nine years branch and Tim has kept things as smooth and well running as possible…he always seems to plan the Annual Norwich Xmas Crawl at least one year in advance so some branch members have plenty of time to do a test run, then another, and another and so on!!

Norwich & Norfolk Branch Chairman: Graham Freeman Tel: 01603 687495 Email: Secretary: Carolyn Jones Tel: 01603 865505 Email: Social Secretary: Tim MacDonald Tel. 01603 865505 Email:

West Norfolk Branch Chairman: Phil Buffham Secretary: Ian Bailey Contact: Bruce Ward Tel: 01485 609107

Branch websites:

Branch mailing list web page:

n behalf of the West Norfolk Branch I would like to personally thank Tim Spitzer for his last 9 years as Branch Chairman!! Indeed he has been our longest serving Chairman. He will take a well earned break off the committee for the time being though no doubt he will be back in the thick of things sooner rather than later. 9 years has seen a lot of changes in the


Tim has been to almost all meetings in his 9 year tenure at the top and has been a true stalwart to the branch and CAMRA as a whole. Phil Buffam takes over duties as Branch Chair so we wish him well in his next 10 years!! Finally well done Tim “bloody nice bloke” Spitzer and why don’t we have a pub crawl to celebrate?…oh yes I think you’ve already planned one around Cambridge next Spring!

Brewery tee’s on tour hen that wonderlust overcomes and you fly, drive, float, walk, cycle or swim to far off (or not so far-off) climes, take your favourite brewery shirt with you and send us a snap or two.


To start things off here’s a picture of Graham Freeman posing like a catalogue model in front of a popular Grecian landmark wearing his Humpty Dumpty Brewery t-shirt. CAMRA_Norwich Published every 3 months by the Norwich, Norfolk & West Norfolk branches of the Campaign for Real Ale © N&N CAMRA 2009 Norfolk Nips is produced and distributed by members of the branch in their own time. Edited by: Graham Freeman & Warren Wordsworth Email: Chris Lucas Email: Views expressed in Norfolk Nips are not necessarily those of the editor or of CAMRA Design & Production: Daniel Speed - Tamoko Design Email: Distribution: Norwich and Norfolk District : Tony Miles West Norfolk District : Ros Harre Advertising: For advertising enquiries please contact Chris Shilling on: Tel: 01778 421 550 Mobile: 07736 635916 Email:

Please email your pictures to

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Pub News


Pub News The Reindeer on Dereham Road Norwich has lost its landlord after being open for just 18 days during October. Is this a record? It appears that Elgoods are again looking for a new tenant. The Woolpack Muspole Street Norwich has shut yet again. We do not know the reason as has The Plough St Benedicts Street, Norwich. The Rosary is closed up for lease sale. The Bridge House, on Riverside Norwich has now reopened. (Oct 2009) The Cottage on Silver Road, Norwich is due to be reopened shortly having been purchased by Mauldons Brewery of Sudbury. Wroxham now has a new pub called The Wroxham Bistro and Brewery Tap It has been described as “a venue to showcase Real Ale from Norfolk Breweries and aims to have as broad a range of beers as possible available. There are 10 handpumps and a purpose built tap room too. They have also started food etc which will expand in time”. As reported in last NIPS The Steampacket in Norwich reopened in September. (For more details see October Friday Five report).

It has been reported that The Oxford Stores in Little Walsingham has recently closed. The tenants of The Woods End, Bramerton, famous for its connection with Billy Bluelight, a local character who used to challenge boat trippers to a race along the riverbank from Norwich to Great Yarmouth in the 1920s and '30s, are to retire shortly. The owners, Bucks based Wellington Pub Company have allowed the tenants to sell it on lease hold with an asking price of £55,000. South Norfolk District Council has recently set up a Rural Pubs Scrutiny Task Group in response to the many pubs in their area that are struggling. As part of this initiative they introduced a ‘Pub of the Year’ competition. The six finalists were: The King’s Head, Hethersett (Northern River Valleys), The Countryman, Tasburgh (Tas Valley), The Pelican, Tacolneston (Wymondham and West), Ferry House, Surlingham (Eastern River Valleys) and The Cock Inn, Diss (Waveney Valley). The eventual winner of ‘The South Norfolk Communtity Pub of the Year’ award was The Pelican at Tacolneston. Our congratulations go to Esher Maginn at The Pelican. For more information on South


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Norfolk District Council’s Rural Pubs Scrutiny Task group see

Brewery and Trade News Reepham Brewery to Close Reepham Brewery, one of Norfolk’s oldest surviving breweries is about to close this autumn. Ted Willems, the owner has been brewing on this Reepham site since1983. He along with Woodforde’s was one of the only two independent brewers that existed in Norfolk in the early 1980s when Watneys beers dominated the area. It was breweries like this that helped see off “The Watneys Red Revolution” and subsequent closure of their King Street Brewery in 1985 which paved the way for the emergence of so many micro breweries that have opened during the last two decades giving Norfolk such a huge variety of beers which we can enjoy today. The breweries brand names such as ‘Velvet Stout’ and ‘Rapier Pale Ale’ were much sought after and popular real ales winning many awards both locally and nationally. He plans to develop his own engineering business and offer advice to people running micro breweries. We wish Ted well in his future ventures.

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NORFOLK NIPS | Pub News Humpty Dumpty Brewery launches new beer. Humpty Dumpty Brewery launched their new beer, Swingbridge Stout, abv 4.1%, at this year’s Norwich Beer Festival. This beer is a complex mix of malts and roasted barley that they have been working on for about a year now. It’s relatively low gravity, but it punches above its weight in the flavour department. The beer was very well received by customers at Norwich Beer Festival. The Hop and Hog move in Wissey Valley Brewery The Hop and Hog in Downham Market started life in April this year as a local produce Shop, selling cheeses, vegetables, and jewellery all from Norfolk. In July they moved Wissey Valley Brewery to premises at the rear of the shop and also took on neighbouring premises, the front part of which is now The Vegetable Shop. The back of this is being kitted out as a premium ale shop. Next year they hope to attract CAMRA members for brewery tours and to sample the new range of ales from Iceni and Wissey Valley Breweries.

News from the West Last month some of us ventured eastwards to Blackfriars brewery in Great Yarmouth. Originally founded in 2004, the brewery now operates from the ground floor

Blackfriars brewery visitors centre of a converted courtyard building once used for herring packing. Now, the only fish present are the ones in the pictures on the walls of the shop and visitors centre and the ones we ate for lunch. I cannot speak highly enough of the welcome we received at the brewery and the quality of the beer that we were encourage to sample. For me, the highlight was the chance to taste some Audit Ale straight from the cask. At around 8%, this barley wine style beer is rarely found these days, and then normally only in bottles. This example is brewed to the old Lacons recipe, which was there framed in the brewery. Some readers may recall an article I wrote about this style of beer in a recent edition of Nips, and it was a privilege to actually try it. I wasn’t alone in thinking that it was wonderful – one of the visitors took away a 2-litre carry out! If you are in Yarmouth search out the shop, which is open throughout the year, except on Sundays.

We also called in a couple of excellent pubs in Yarmouth. The Red Herring has been listed in the Good Beer Guide for many years and is as good as ever, but it was my first visit to the Mariners Tavern and this is also a fine pub with about six beers available. On the way back west we called in at a couple of excellent pubs at Reedham. Both the Lord Nelson and the Ship are by the side of the river and you can sit outside watching the boats sail past and the swing bridge open and close. We were lucky to have perfect September weather, and I cannot remember a nicer Sunday lunchtime. Nearer home, we called into the Crown at Middleton to find that it was the first night for the new owner. It was pleasant and popular, with the promise of excellent food and lots of interesting wine on display. This does not always mean that the same care and attention has been lavished on the beer, but in this case I am

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Selling a MINIMUM of 50 Beers, ALL from NORFOLK


Prices from £2.00 to £2.90 per pint Open 11am – 11pm Mon – Sat (12 Noon – 10.30 pm Sunday) Coming soon: Wroxham Brewery: own own beers brewed on site

Attention all brewers! If you would like to supply your beers through the Wroxham Brewery Tap please contact us for details:

Tel 01603 781952 The Wroxham Brewery tap, Staitheway Rd, The Peninsula, Wroxham, Norfolk NR12 8TH

The City’s favourite local


9 Cask Ales - 6 Lagers and Local Cider Global Bottled Beers - Award winning Wines Brand new look and hi tech cellar Riverside seating and smoking area Delicious home cooked lunches Wensum Street, Norwich NR3 1HY

Tel: 01603 619517

Wishing all our customers a very Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy 2010. Our thanks for your continued loyal support. Open Christmas Day. 10

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NORFOLK NIPS | Pub News continued delighted to report that the Wherry was excellent. This place has all the ingredients to be really successful, and we wish them all the best. A few miles away, up on the coast, the Ship at Brancaster has been closed and has undergone refurbishment. I believe that it is being run by the same people as the Crown at East Rudham and the Kings Head at Letheringsett. We tried to check it out in early November, but it was not yet open. From the outside it looks really good, and I guess in concept it will be similar to the other pubs in the group, with a modern look, great food and, we hope, good beer. Let us know if you get there before we do. Out at Terrington St John, the Woolpack seems to have settled down under new ownership. There were three beers on when we visited and the staff were friendly and attentive. The food is still good value and very tasty. It’s just off the main Lynn to Wisbech Road and worth the detour. In Lynn the Wenn’s Hotel is advertised as under new management. I am getting a bit old for the Friday night circuit and so I have not ventured in myself. I was not really convinced by the adverts in the Lynn News, which promised ‘Ales and Larger’. Not such good news from the Cat And Fiddle at East Rudham which has been closed for a while and we hear is unlikely to reopen. Also still closed is the New Inn on

Wootton Road. No news or even rumours about the future of what should be a very successful pub. On a more positive note there was a planning application mentioned in the Lynn News looking to turn the bed shop close to the south gates back into a pub. It was formerly O’Tools and before that, the Prince of Wales, so it should have a good chance of being accepted. Not sure about the cryptic reference to lap dancers though. Our trips round and about have taken us to a few of the regions pubs – the beer in the Kings Head at Bircham was exceptionally good when we called. From there we thought that we would try the Orange Tree at Thornham but it was so popular we could not get into the car park. Several people have recommended the place, so it is one for a repeat visit. Instead we tried the White Horse at Holme Next To The Sea. It is off the main road and down in the village. I reckon that a lot of people drive along the coast road and are unaware of its existence. It is the first time I have been in since it was closed for a while due to a fire and it was good to see that it still sold good beer, (I think I had Adnams), and that it is still a bit more like a village local compared to some of the North Norfolk pubs. On the way home we thought we would try the Black Horse at Castle Rising. Last time I was in there was a very loud band and a young clientele which did not inspire

a quick return, but this time it was much quieter with a good mix of customers and 4 beers on offer. We stayed much longer than we anticipated and would definitely call again. Also on the outskirts of Kings Lynn is the Sandboy at Bawsey. They expressed an interest in receiving some Nips, so we have been along a couple of times. There is a large dining area, but there is plenty of room if you just want a drink. Three beers were on offer when we called, the food was good and not too expensive and there seems to be a lot going on, including regular Salsa sessions. Maybe the next place to try is the Red Cat at North Wootton. Once a beer guide regular it seems to have drifted out of favour in recent years, but we hear that it has been refurbished and that it could be heading back to its former glory. Let us know what you think. Finally, pubs do great work for charities. One of our branch members is involved with the Burma Star association and is very grateful for all the places that allow him to put a collecting box on the bar. Some pubs go even further, organising special fundraising events. There are too many to give a full list, but lets hear it for the Cock at Magdalen who raised £500 for the ‘Help the Heroes’ appeal and for Wimbotsham Chequers who raised a massive £8000 from their Fenman Classic bike show for a variety of local charities. Jeff Hoyle

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Pub Post Its


Pub Post-its As always, remember that these post-its are subjective and reflect the personal experience of our correspondents. Please feel free to email your post-its in to - and if you really like the pub, why not nominate it for next year’s CAMRA Good Beer Guide? Feathers, Wymondham - Full and friendly with lots of pumps and interesting wall displays. Elgoods Tickler (£2.30) was excellent.

days! You can reach Drayton from Norwich by bike along Marriott’s Way and it is well worth the effort.

Queens Head, Wymondham - just had one pump with London Pride on it, £3 a pint and OK. There was live Premier football on the big screen.

Kings Head – Woodton In addition to their Greene King Beers this pub has recently had on Grain Bitter, Buffy’s Blue (on gravity), and Humpty Dumpty Little Sharpie. A pub worth trying if you are in the area.

Cross Keys, Wymondham - had an impressive eight pumps including Hopback Summer Lightning (£3) delicious. Windmill, Wymondham – This pub which has recently reopened offers Wolf beers and Tim Taylor Landlord (£2.70). With its open log fire, a big fish tank, a Norfolk twister on the ceiling it is particularly recommended. Kings Head – Shipdham – complete with real fire has Taylor Landlord available. Golden Dog – Shipdham - has one real ale available - Wolf Werewolf and also has a real fire. Old Bell - Saham Toney – Has four real ales on with Greene King IPA and Adnams Bitter as regulars. Occasional guests include London Pride & Palmers Copper Ale. Excellent food available. The Cock – Drayton serves a range of Marston’s ales plus guest ales from Woodforde’s and recently they had on Wychwood Hobgoblin which was superb. The Red Lion – Drayton sells a range of Adnams Beers and Courage Directors. The Bob Carter Leisure Centre – Drayton usually serves four real ales, that include Green King Abbot and IPA plus a local guest from Woodforde’s. They have recently had Humpty Dumpty Little Sharpie on which sold out in two 12

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Mayden’s Head, Lynn has been closed for the last week or so. Apparently it has changed hands again but nothing definite known. (Subsequent to the meeting the pub has been seen open). First & Last, Ormesby - Now has four cask ales available, Adnams Broadside, Greene King IPA, and Speckled Hen plus a guest. Wenns, Lynn under new management. Live & Let Live, Lynn 4 well kept real ales but let down by paintwork needing re-doing. Red Cat, North Wootton has reopened after refurbishment. Globe, Lynn current (Wetherspoon’s) beer festival including foreign beers. Ale & service good. Lattice, Lynn same festival, beers & service also good. Stag, West Acre say they had the first ever public cask of Beeston’s new mild, Squirrel’s Nuts. As the brewery hadn’t one yet, the pub designed their own pump clip with a predictable picture of a squirrel. We’ll see if Beeston go with this! Red Lion, Hokwold, currently closed.

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NORFOLK NIPS | Pub Post Its continued Sandboy, Bawsey, 3 ales on. Were interested in local breweries. Apparently have already approached Fox. Globe, Fair Green advertise GK IPA + an ever changing guest. Rampant Horse, Gayton is apparently up for sale again. Crown, Middleton, under new management, keen on the beer even if he doesn’t drink it himself. It seems he was previously chef at Fishes, Burnham Market. Dolphin, Thetford doing well, ‘no IPA or Wherry’. Black Horse, Thetford doing well enough to need more stillage, his 4 pumps are selling too quickly! Thetford Legion is expecting 4 casks of Adnams Tally Ho by Christmas. Chequers Feltwell is currently closed no information on re-opening has been forthcoming.

REAL ALE SHOP BLOFIELD Visit the shop at Blofield Leisure Centre, 58 Yarmouth Road, Blofield, Norfolk, NR13 4LQ Or Visit our brewery shop at 7 Estcourt Road, Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, NR30 4JQ

Tel: 01493 854484 email:

The Stag at West Acre had the pleasure recently of being the first pub where Beeston Brewery's new beer, Squirrels Nuts became available. In response to the piece on The Fat Cat in the autumn edition: Dear Sir/Madam, I read with interest the pub post its in the Norfolk nips (Autumn 2009). Whilst I accept that one can only judge a pub on the day of the visit I did find the comments on the Fat Cat disgraceful. To say that the pork pie was the highlight of the evening in a pub which regularly has well over 30 ales on, and more punters on a wet Tuesday evening than most pubs have on a Friday, indicates that the contributor must exist in an abyss of ignorance, or jealousy! I drink session ales at 3.8% or less and there is almost without fail a choice of 5 or more, most so called ale pubs would be pushed to have 5 ales of any description. Steve Foyster

Six Real Ales Live Music Every Thursday Lounge & Garden Seasonal menu (formerley the St Andrews Tavern) 4 St Andrews Street, Norwich, NR2 4AF

01603 614858 Open Midday to Midnight 7 Days A Week Serving Food until 9pm Monday to Friday

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2nd ALL NORFOLK 3rd and 4th APRIL 2010 OVER 30 NORFOLK ALES & CIDERS AT LAKENHAM-HEWETT RFC - ADMISSION £2.50 OPENING TIMES Saturday 1200 ‘til 2300 Sunday 1200 ‘til 2100


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The New Clubhouse Norwich Road Swardeston Norwich NR14 8DU

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NORFOLK NIPS | Words from the West Norfolk Editor

October First Friday large number of beer enthusiasts assembled at The Queen of Iceni on Riverside to begin this month’s exploration of city hostelries. This large purposebuilt Wetherspoon’s Lloyds No 1 did not disappoint with a keenly priced array of familiar and guest beers on the counter and all in tip top condition. Wetherspoon’s real ale pricing policy and close relationship to CAMRA is well known and with Friday evening’s revellers pouring in this made the venue a fine place to start drinking.


Steampacket, Crown Rd The route to the next pub, the newly reopened Steampacket on Crown Road was across the new Lady Julian footbridge which links Riverside with King Street and there were fine views along the river on this balmy night. The Steampacket has been refurbished but still retains an intimate feel to it and a friendly welcome was received. Three hand pumps on the bar (Wherry, Adnams and London Pride at £2.60) dispensed excellent quality ale. The bar area has been expanded slightly, the back room is now

toilets and there will soon be a restaurant operating upstairs. Apart from ourselves workers from the nearby television studio (including an instantly recognisable sports presenter) were enjoying the atmosphere at the bar. A short walk along the top end of King Street took us to Kings, (previously Nags Head, Tuskers) where the handpumps were Adnams (£2.75) and Spitfire (£3.00). A convivial atmosphere had some of us involved in conversation with a local drinker. Time to move on now, to the Wild Man on Bedford Street, one of the few pubs that Tolly Cobbold used to own, but now offering other Suffolk beers and Wherry. The Abbot (2.90) was excellent, the Wherry according to reports hazy but drinkable. The pub was full of young people enjoying a Friday night out in the city, and it had a very friendly feel to it. Our final call was to the bar of Cinema City. The beautiful mediaeval Suckling Hall and its enclosed flint courtyard are a wonderful setting to quaff real ale. The one beer on offer, from another Suffolk brewer, St Peters is named after the builder of the hall Sir Robert Suckling. Some of our party were lucky to taste the beer (at £3.30 a pint) before it ran out, others went elsewhere (or home to bed!)

In summary, an enjoyable crawl via some varied and interesting establishments, but Norfolk beer (Wherry) was found in only two of the fine pubs, a situation that I am sure local CAMRA members would like to see rectified in future. Mont

A visit from Wetherspoons It was very nice to see the management team from “The Lattice House” in King’s Lynn turn up at our recent branch meeting. They expressed their keeness to address any issues which might stand in the way of future inclusion in the Good Beer Guide. They are taking steps to ensure problems encountered in the past with for instance speed of service and beer quality are corrected. They also intend to get increasingly involved in the local community. We welcomed them and are very encouraged by their news. Nice to know talking to other folk in the pub business as well that they do want to know why they do or don’t get into the GBG. One publican told me he felt that one failing in the process was that branches very seldom explain to publicans who falter, what they need to do to rectify the situation. Is there a need for some form of scorecard which the publicans could ask to see? This is a difficult question. What do you think?

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Norfolk CAMRA Branch Calendar


Norwich CAMRA Branch calendar 15 December - Branch Meeting. The Railway, North Elmham. 8pm. Coach, Normal pickup times and route.

5 Feb First Friday 5 Compleat Angler (8pm) then Red Lion (Bishopgate), Bridge House, Ketts Tavern, Cottage (Silver Road).

19 December – Our traditional Christmas Crawl of 10 Norwich pubs. 5.00pm Rose (235 Queens Road) 5.30 Freemasons Arms 6.00 Kings Arms 6.45 Horse & Dray 7.30 Queen of Iceni (Lloyds No 1, Riverside) 8.15 Coach & Horses (Thorpe Road) 8.45 Rosary Tavern 9.15 Jubilee 9.45 Red Lion (Bishopgate) 10.15 Ketts Tavern.

16 Feb Branch Meeting which will include voting for GBG 2011. (Please bring membership card if you intend to vote). York Tavern, Norwich

20 December – West Norfolk Christmas Crawl in Norwich. A chance for members from both branches to meet up and socialise. - 1100 Whalebone - 1200 Duke Of Wellington -1245 Cider Shed -1330 Heath House -1415 Cottage -1500 Ketts Tavern - 1545 Adam & Eve -1630 Wig & Pen -1730 Ribs Of Beef -1815 The Vine - 1900 Belgian Monk - 1945 Queen Of Iceni. 8 Jan 2010 First Friday 5 - Fat Cat (West End Street) (8pm) then West End Retreat, Black Horse, Mitre, Garden House. 19 Jan Branch Meeting Lord Nelson, Reedham. 8pm, Coach normal pick up times and route. 21 Jan “Beers of the Festival” awards. Cottage, Silver Road 8pm. 29 Jan Campaigning Coach Trip. (destination to be arranged)

26 Feb campaigning Coach Trip (destination to be arranged) 16 March Branch AGM. Only Card carrying members admitted. Venue Take 5. 8pm.

Coach pick-ups: 6.47pm junc. Southwell Road/Grove Road; 6.55pm junc, Old Palace Road/West End Street; 7.10pm Heartsease Roundabout, (Harvey Lane side); 7.15pm Norwich Railway Station, (Thorpe Road bus stops). Please contact Social Secretary Tim MacDonald E-mail or 01603 865505 in advance if you wish to board the coach on any part of the above route. For updates on the social calendar check with the full branch events calendar. You do not have to be a member to come on the Branch meetings, coach trips or the First Friday Five. If not a member why not attend any of these and if you enjoy them then perhaps you may wish to join!

West Norfolk CAMRA Branch calendar 8th December, White Hart, Foulden

9th February, Lattice House, Lynn

19th December, Norwich tour starts 11am, The Whalebone

9th March, Black Horse, Thetford


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Proposed visit to Masham, Theakstons & Black Sheep Breweries March 26-27-28th 2010 (01842 827600)

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The Kings Head North Lopham (Near Diss)

400 year old thatched country pub

Real Ales at sensible prices: Woodfordes Wherry & Adnams Bitter plus a rotating guest beer (4% ABV and above) PLUS Aspalls Cyder and a draught keg Mild

Home made food, freshly prepared with a selection of Vegetarian and gluten free meals (Served Wednesday to Saturday 12 - 2.30pm & 6pm - 8.30pm and Sunday Lunch 12 noon - 3pm)

Fire l a e R

Opening Times: Monday 5-11pm Tuesday / Wednesday 11.30am - 3pm and 5pm - 11pm Thursday / Friday 11.30am - 3pm and 5pm - 12midnight Saturday 11.30am - 12midnight Sunday 12noon - 10:30pm

Beer amp Garden & le Pa rkin g

The Kings Head, 16 The Street, North Lopham, Diss , Norfolk IP22 2NE Tel: 01379 688007


(01692) 650371 FREE HOUSE

Proprietor since 1989: STEVE BULLIMORE

OPEN FOR FOOD & DRINKS ALL DAY, EVERY DAY, 11am - 11pm Food available all day until 10.30pm 10% off food and drink on production of CAMRA membership card

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Norfolk’s True Heritage Pubs 4


© Michael Slaughter 2009

Woodside, Thorpe St Andrew

The public bar of the Woodside, Thorpe St Andrew, which has hardly changed since it was built in 1956. n my second article in Norfolk Nips I advise readers that the Red Lion, Kenninghall, was recently added to the Part Two of CAMRA’s National Inventory of Historic Pub Interiors for its rare snug. In this issue I am delighted to advise readers that another Norfolk pub has been added to the national list, this time to Part One – it is the Woodside, Thorpe St Andrew on the east edge of Norwich. Normally, a pub needs to be wholly or largely intact since before 1939 to be included, but pubs built between 1939 and 30 years ago and essentially intact since construction can also be



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added. The Woodside was built in 1956 in inter-war style by Bullards Brewery and it is very little changed, still with its Crittal windows - it is an amazingly rare survivor. It still retains its original plan-form of a lounge, public bar, smoke-room and off-sales (no longer in use). The room in regular use is the lounge on the right with a curved original counter which retains its original Formica top but, like the walls, has a new frontage of wooden panels over the original ply ones. This bar also retains its original mirrored back fitting with glass shelves and two lower drawers.

The distinctive 1950s entrance to the off sales of the Woodside, Thorpe St Andrew. The spartan public bar is in the middle with a '3' on one of its two inner doors, original

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NORFOLK NIPS | counter on a tiled plinth with a button leatherette frontage and a black Formica top. The bar back is of classic late 50s/early 60s style, as is the fireplace and there are two sections of corner seating. The public bar tends to only be open currently when some customers find the lounge is getting too noisy and also for the meetings of a Reptile Club on 1st Tue of the month. The far left front door is not currently in use but leads to an intact separate tiny off-sales room with its counter, and also the former pool room which is currently only used by members of the local pigeon club who meet on Fri. and Sat

evenings. This room has a parquet floor, original counter with a panelled front and Formica top, bar back with till drawers and one section of fixed seating looks original. Note that most of the doorways have two rows of translucent glass blocks around them. If you want to inspect the rooms on a visit to the pub just ask and the bar staff will show you them. The Woodside is situated at 148 Plumstead Road East, Thorpe St Andrew NR7 9NG. The real ale on sale is Greene King IPA, but this tends to only be during the racing pigeon season. No food. Open from 11 to 11 (10.30 Sun). Telephone 01603 708918.

The Smoke Room bar fittings at the Woodside, Thorpe St Andrew –the style being typical of the late 1950s.

Kings Arms, Blakeney his issue has a 1950s theme as I now feature the Kings Arms, Blakeney, which is little changed since it was re-fitted following a flood in 1953. Originally three fisherman's cottages, it was built in 1760 (note the ‘FH + 1760’ tiled into the mellow red Norfolk pantiled roof of the building – the initials ‘FH’ is thought to relate to the builder who fitted it and not ‘Free House’, a modern term). The pub consists of 4 small rooms the original layout looks like it could have been two rooms with an off-sales hatch situated opposite the front door. Note the plaque on the wall recording the flood level in 1953 - the bar fittings are those installed following the 1953 flood. The public bar on the


left has a red quarry tiled floor, a 1950s style lapped wood counter with a new top, and bar back shelving including ones with 1950s red Formica on them. The large brick fireplace could have some 1950s changes as it contains both hand made and machine-made

bricks, but the dado panelling is much older as could be the two long benches. To the right the lounge bar has more old dado panelling on the wall, another lapped Continued Overleaf

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Queen’s Head and Waveney Brewing Company Traditional Village Pub with a brewery producing permanent and seasonal ales on site Large beer garden, traditional games, lunchtime menu and a good selection of real ale, spirits and soft drinks Listed in the Good Beer Guide every year since 2000.

Station Road, Earsham, Norfolk

Tel: (01986) 892623


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NORFOLK NIPS | Heritage Pubs continued

The quarry tiled public bar at the Kings Arms, Blakeney, barely changed since it was refitted in 1953 following a flood. wood counter with a new top, more bar back shelves with red Formica on some and the old till drawer. The room has been combined with another small room to the far right which has a 1950s brick fireplace. In the far corner is the disused phone booth which has been listed as the smallest art gallery in a pub in Britain! Two further small rooms to the far left were brought into pub use in the 1980s. A further ‘Garden Room’ has been added in recent years. It is heartening to find a pub in the popular North Norfolk coast area that has resisted changes and I can thoroughly recommend this unspoilt gem. Why not combine a visit with one of the daily (early February / April to the beginning of November) seal-watching trips to the far end of Blakeney Point which

set off from Morston Quay. See the Kings Arms website for more details. The Kings Arms, which has been run by the Davies family since 1976, is situated at Westgate Street NR25 7NQ close to Blakeney Quay and is open from 11 to 11. Five real ales are available - Adnams Best Bitter, Marstons Pedigree and Old Speckled Hen on handpumps; also Woodfordes Wherry or Nelsons Revenge and either Adnams Broadside or Explorer from casks on the bar. Freshly prepared meals are available from 12 to 2 and 6 to 9; also bar meals can be ordered from 12 noon to 9.30pm. Accommodation is available in 7 en-suite rooms. Telephone 01263 740341.

The public bar counter at the Kings Arms, Blakeney – a Woodfordes and an Adnams beer is always sold direct from the cask. If you require photographs of your pub interior / exterior you can contact Mick on 01733 390598 or email to discuss your requirements.

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Can our pubs be saved? few months ago I was in a pub in Norwich enjoying the music of Landermason. This is quite a nice band, so it was not surprising that it was a bit crowded. The beautiful weather helped to make the public thirsty. When a member of the staff of the pub came to collect the empty glasses from our table I asked her if she could bring us full ones in return. She looked at me like I had made a very indecent proposal. Immediately I apologised and went to the bar myself to get new beers for myself and the other people at the table.


I had to think about this when I read an article about the amount of pubs that are closing down nowadays. A lot of people blame the government for this. It should be caused by the high taxes. I think this is a bit easy to say. In my country the taxes are higher and yet less bars have to close definitely. I think pub owners should have a closer look at what their business is about. I don't think this is selling beer but serving beer. The consumers can easily buy good beer in supermarkets or in off-licences. At home they drink it whilst entertaining company or watching sports on television or such. In pubs there is in most cases nothing extra coming with their drink, except when the owner/ 22

| WINTER 2009 / 2010

manager organises live music. In the Netherlands I'm used to have my beer brought to my table, often combined with a little bowl of nuts. Sometimes the barkeeper asks me when I enter the bar if I would like the “usual”. Even on the ferry between Hook of Holland and Harwich the waiter walks to my table when my glass is empty and asks if it needs to be refilled. And the barkeeper always will make a little chat if he has the time for this. Normally paying is done when I want to leave, not after receiving every single beer. It shows I'm being trusted. This is all meant to give the feeling of being welcome, that I feel at home. For this special treatment I'm willing to give a tip to the staff. On all my travels in Europe and the USA I experienced that service is a normal thing. But not in the UK. In Poland I once was in a student bar: they had no table service. Yet even here they gave more service than in the UK: when giving a large order you get a tray to carry the glasses to your table. In the UK barkeepers are not bothered to see you walk to and from the bar a couple of times to get the glasses on your table. The average barkeeper in the UK stands on a sort of platform behind the bar and looks down literally on the visitors of the pub. I have witnessed that the

barkeeper sits on a stool, busy with reading the news paper or making a crossword puzzle. With a big sigh the drinks or snacks are sold. Instead of a little chat I have heard remarks like: “I don't know if you are worthy to drink my beer”, “Oh no, not you again!” and “You are too ugly to drink my beer”. Is this the way to make the client feel at home and make him want to come back? Everywhere in the world there is music or a television to watch for guests who don't have someone to talk to. DVD's are shown sometimes, people watch important sport matches together. In my opinion the pub should compete with the living room at home. As long as this is not happening there will be an increase of pubs closing down. A customer who gets up from his chair has a choice: to walk to the bar or to walk out of the door. It's up to the staff of the pub to take that choice away. The barkeeper should be a host. Seeing pubs get closed is such a pity! Most pubs are really a wonderful sight, there are excellent beers available and I think that by only giving a little extra effort they can be a great place to be! Albert van der Steeg

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Return to Norwich

A11. The A11 crossed the Yare by a narrow bridge which frequently held up traffic.

s I was in Norwich recently, I had the chance after 30 years to revisit your splendid Beer Festival. As one of the small group of co-founders and organizers of the first ever Beer Festival in Norwich in the late seventies, I was interested to see what had become of our great plans and hopes at the time, as I moved shortly afterwards to Germany , where I have lived ever since. It was really great and I congratulate you all on your enormous success. I know how very many people are involved, all giving unstintingly of their time and energy but it was really worth it. Thanks for a wonderful experience and keep up the good work – Germany has, unfortunately, no real equivalent, so you can imagine the pleasure as I downed my first pint of real ale after so long. Geoff Cheeseman

The Red Lion is a very old pub dating back to the late 17th century. Eaton village once boasted no less than six pubs but by the 1960s there were just two remaining. The Red Lion and The Cellar House. These two pubs served the village population. However, a growing population of home owners in the area was to precipitate many changes. But in 1966 much of the old remained.


The Old (or not so old) Days came to live in Norwich with my wife and son in 1966. Our new home was in Eaton on the newly created Greenways Estate. At that time there were rolling fields that are now covered with houses.


My local was The Red Lion situated on what was then (before the construction of The Cringleford Bye Pass) the main

The Red Lion had three unequal sized rooms. There was a traditional bar at one end and next the “Saloon” and then a small “Off Licence”. The bar had a stone floor, sprinkled with sawdust, some benches and some wooden tables and chairs. There was a much used dartboard and games of dominoes were often played. “The Saloon” was a different world. It was more like a smart hotel lounge covered with a thick pile carpet and with comfortable settees, arm chairs and small round tables. In winter the large ornamental fireplace was lit with a roaring log fire. At the far end of the building was the “off licence”, a very small room where locals could buy beer to take home. Sometimes one might see a woman accompanying a man in the lounge. Very occasionally two women might enter alone. The only women seen in the bar were young students.

mild or bitter. The only food available was crisps although I think a sandwich may have been available on request. And, ah yes, the toilets! Outside in the yard was a walled open air urinal. It consisted of a wall and drain and there was a smell. By 1969 the old Red Lion was no more. Watneys had taken over bringing in their bland keg beer. The interior was modernised and consisted of a single large room and one small bar. The floor was covered by an industrialised type carpet and gone was the old wooden furniture to be replaced with ‘modern’ style tables and chairs. An indoor hygienic toilet completed the refurbishment. I think I was just in time to witness the end of one era and the beginning of another. Norman Wordsworth Do any of our readers have memories of pubs from yesteryear? If so we would like to hear from you. – Ed.

The pub was then a Steward & Patteson house and as I recall there was just a choice of

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Fantastic Four go to Somerset


Smashing Spring in Somerset No tourists in here just friendly locals. Midweek we drove high up in the Mendip Hill's and found another of our finds in the Hunter's Lodge at Priddy. The pebble dashed exterior did not bode well but as we entered we came across a pub which seemingly had not changed for 100 years. Beer straight from the cask once more and the amazing price of just £3.50 for a bowl of faggot and peas!! he group of 4 (Big Nige, Big Kev, Stew and Sharon) returned to Somerset this past Spring to see if we could relive another week of sun, sand and fabulous Real Ale and...erm Cider!! We got to our cottage in the middle of nowhere but too far south of Glastonbury in good time to do shopping for the week and have a pint down the local Castlebrook Arms in Compton Dundon...what a surprise to find a genuine local with Sharps Doom Bar and Otter bitter...both very drinkable!!


The week started rather wet but got sunnier and warmer as the days went by and so did 24

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the pubs! Our first find was the Barton Inn at Barton St David. We were not sure at first as we could hear loud punters and the Pub Sign was upside down!! In we went and what we encountered was a truly eccentric village local with beer served straight from the barrel!

Average prices for Somerset were well down compared to Norfolk at about £2.50 a pint and Local Cider was much cheaper at about £2.00. the cider was also very good. We visited Wilkins Cider Farm near Wedmore, and sampled some delightful blends of dry and sweet varieties. Stew bought a

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NORFOLK NIPS | Fantastic Four go to Somerset gallon to take away for a mere 72 pence a pint!! in general in Somerset the food prices were reasonable and the style much less of the pretentious “gastro” type found so predominantly in East Anglia nowadays, and the quality was excellent nearly everywhere. Back to the pubs and another classic pub revisited from last time was Eli’s (Rose & Crown) at Huish Episcopi. I had just reopened after extensive flooding earlier in the year. The pub is unusual as there is no bar making it more as if you are walking into someone's house. There are multiple rooms for nothing but good basic chat. Another pub which

we raved about last time was the Halfway House in Pitney..this time it was a little disappointing with the beer not and food not such good quality...hopefully this is a mere blip and we will return one day to find it back to its best. After a bracing walk on Brean Down we headed for the Queens Arms at Bleadon....Another find! Absolutely well recommended for super atmosphere, good wholesome food and superb beer (Butcombe gold and Bath Golden Hare on when visited). There were plenty more pubs we visited not only in the Good Beer Guide but ones we visited on the off-chance - The Castle-

brook Arms was not in the guide but was excellent all the same as was the Anchor in Seatown. Oh and on the way back we visited another classic Oxfordshire pub - Peyton Arms at Stoke Lyne. it would have been rude not to visit and it was truly a great end to a great week in the west country. Nigel Nudds

West Norfolk Subscription

To receive the next four issues of Norfolk Nips and Cask Force, send ten 1st class stamps to Norfolk Nips, 91 Tennyson Road Kings Lynn, Norfolk, PE30 5NG

The Real Ale Shop Branthill Farm, Wells-next-the-Sea, NORFOLK NR23 1SB ON THE B1105 FAKENHAM- WELLS RD

Over 50 bottle conditioned real ales from 15 Norfolk brewers who all use Branthill Farms famous malted barley.

TEL: 01328 710810

Now selling bottle conditioned beers from The Real Ale Shop in Wells Next The Sea tel 01328 710810

Contact us below for trade sales:

01603 279927

3 Pollard Rd, Hainford, Norwich NR10 3BE

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Packed full of Norfolk’s Finest Real Ales Brewed and bottled on the premises, Local Cheeses, Chutneys, Glazed Hams, and Local Crafts.

Sunday Lunches • Brewery Tours • Beer Festivals • Folk Nights If you like Beer and Food - we’re the place to try The Hop and Hog, No 1 The High Street, Downham Market, Norfolk PE38 9DA

01366 386658

THE VEGETABLE SHOP 1d HIGH STREET DOWNHAM MARKET Come to the ONLY shop in Downham dedicated to providing REAL ORGANIC FRUIT & VEGETABLES plus a range of Organic Wholefoods,Bread and Eggs. It’s a UNIQUE EXPERIENCE! Shop: 01366 385523 Mobile: 07967 346551 Ring Ian for details of our forthcoming Vegetarian Feast Nights with music, ciders and beer made with local organic barley!

THE ICENI BREWERY For ALL your homebrew needs buy DIRECT from the ICENI BREWERY At 3 Foulden Rd, Ickburgh, Thetford IP26 5HB

Tel 01842 878922/ 07949 488113 Or email for details

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in Norfolk


his year’s Beer Festival saw Norwich & Norfolk CAMRA launch their LocAle scheme.

What is LocAle? The LocAle scheme is a new initiative that was created by the Nottingham Branch in 2007 who wanted to support their remaining brewers following the buy out and subsequent closure of Hardy & Hansons by Greene King. They were quickly followed by York and Isle of Wight branches. It was taken over by CAMRA HQ who has adopted the idea as a National initiative and many branches have subsequently implemented this scheme. Definition of LocAle. LocAle as defined by Norwich & Norfolk CAMRA is for a pub to always stock at least one real ale (as defined by CAMRA) brewed at a brewery that is no more than 30 miles from door to door. By introducing this scheme we will be encouraging pubs to sell local beers which will reduce the "beer miles" thus benefiting the environment. It ensures more variety and diversity to the consumer, and hence better sales for the pub. The scheme helps sustain the local micro brewers and benefits the local economy. Local licensees are invited to

join this scheme and those opting to join are being issued with the necessary publicity material that include guidance notes, stickers to display in their windows and ‘Pump clip Crowners’ which are small cardboard stickers that landlords attach to their pump clips advertising that beer dispensed through these pumps is brewed locally and can be considered as LocAle. So far the following pubs have signed up to LocAle: Aldborough - Black Boys. Clippesby Hall - Muskett Arms Cromer - The Cottage. Earsham- Queens Head. Filby - Kings Head. Gorleston- Dock Tavern. Gt Yarmouth- Red Herring, St Johns Head. Hopton - White Hart. Kenninghall - Red Lion. Lyng - Fox & Hounds. North Elmham - Railway. North Walsham- Orchard Gardens. Norwich Gardeners/Murderers, Jubilee, Ketts Tavern, Kings Head, Rose, Take 5, Trafford Arms, Vine. Reedham - Ferry. Sheringham - Windham Arms. Swardeston Lakenham/Hewitt Rugby Club. Wroxham - Brewery Tap.

uk/locale/locale1.htm Licensees who wish to join or require more information about the LocAle scheme please contact: Warren Wordsworth, Pubs Officer, Norwich & Norfolk Branch. E-Mail: .uk or by post – 16 Grove Avenue, Norwich NR1 2QD. Warren Wordsworth West Norfolk CAMRA XMAS Pub Crawl 2009 - Norwich Saturday 19th December)

It’s that time of year again, here’s the full schedule. All welcome, join in at any point. Food arrangements up to the individual. 1100 Whalebone (Magdalen

Rd) 1200 Duke Of Wellington (Waterloo Rd) 1245 Cider Shed (Lawson Rd) 1330 Heath House (Gertrude Rd) 1415 Cottage (Silver Rd) 1500 Ketts Tavern (Ketts Hill) 1545 Adam & Eve (Bishopgate) 1630 Wig & Pen (Palace Plain) 1730 Ribs Of Beef (Wensum St) 1815 The Vine (Dove St) 1900 Belgian Monk (Pottergate) 1945 Queen Of Iceni (Riverside) Contact; Tim Spitzer (07950)823270.

For Further information see our Branch Website:

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01603 625891

6 St Martins Palace Plain, Norwich NR3 1RN

This warm and friendly 17th century Freehouse is to the north side of Norwich cathedral. Owned by Craig & Lynne McLaren since 1993. ‘The Wig’ as its affectionately known, has built a reputation for fresh, fast, affordable British cuisine.

• Good Ale • Good Food • Heated smoking area Sky & ESPN Sports TV • Late Night Opening • Real Fire Look out for our Cask Marque Plaque. This guarantees beer quality in the Wig & Pen and the opportunity to TRY BEFORE YOU BUY.


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For the 13th successive year, the Wig & Pen has been included in CAMRA’s Good Beer Guide. We are very proud of this achievement.

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The Railway Freehouse

The Mermaid Inn Church Street, Elsing Dereham,NR20 3EA Tel: 01362637640 Email:

Great Pub Food Menu Try our famous Steak and Kidney Roly Poly with thick beer gravy. We cook our own Ham in real ale, we can't cook it quick enough!

Station Rd, North Elmham

01362 668300 In the current Good Beer Guide, CAMRA members and supporters of local microbrewers



Freehouse, Freehouse, Real Real Ales, Ales, Real Real Food, Food, Real Real Welcome! Welcome!

Colin & Julie Smith look forward to seeing you!

Look us up in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide 2010 or the CAMRA Good Pub Food Guide. We have internet café facilities!

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Westgate Street, Blakeney, Norfolk NR25 7NQ

Tel: 01263 740341 Situated in beautiful Blakeney Recommended by most Good Pub and Food Guides Food Served all Day Lovely en-suite accommodation. Children & Pets Welcome

Car Parking • Beer Garden • Dogs welcome


Pig n Falcon - St Neots ALES TO DATE




FROM 9/4/09 Minimum of



large heated smoking area

on at all times during the festive period!

‘Rock and Ale’ every weekend with up to 16 Ales & ciders from £2 per pint Open 10am (11am Sunday) til’ late Monday -Sunday! Tel 07951 785678 – New St, St Neots – PE19 1AE 30

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NORFOLK NIPS | Norwich Beer Festival

32nd Norwich Beer Festival & Beyond tions during the week, the East Anglian Cider competition and two categories in the Champion Beer of East Anglia. I would like thank all my volunteer staff who did a tremendous job of keeping our customers supplied with quality ales and cider, supervised their meanderings around the halls, without them their wouldn't be a Norwich Beer festival.

ith the dust now settled on the Beer Festival, we can look back and congratulate ourselves on another fabulous festival.


It was our busiest festival to date, with over 19,000 visitors throughout the week, drinking well over 60,000 pints of beer, 6,000 pint of cider and numerous bottles. We recruited our 2,000th member at the festival, launched the Branch's Locale scheme, played host to many of the counties brewers and publicans, raised a few pounds for NARS (Norfolk Accident Rescue Service) and hopefully had good time. We also held two competi-

I would also like to thank, the Hall’s staff who do such a fantastic job in putting up with us year after year, the brewers and wholesalers who supplied us with the beer and cider, and of course you readers of this esteemed publication who came along and supported us in October. Of course we can't get everything right, so if you have any comments (hopefully positive) about the festival, please get in touch, either via NIPS or you will find my contact details on the branch web site.

Planning for next year's festival has already started, which leads me nicely into the logo competition. The logo used for the festival is one of our major marketing points and is the symbol of the festival, it appears on t-shirts, glasses, posters et al. You don't have to be graphical maestro to enter the competition, all we ask is a design featuring a dragon in 4/5 colours and we will do the rest. The competition is open to everybody and entries should be sent, either as artwork or a computer readable file (most formats accepted, jpeg, tiff, pdf, postscript etc, no word docs please!!!). Please send entries to Beer Festival Logo competition, 8 Pond Road, Horsford, Norfolk NR10 3SW or see the branch web site for further details on submitting via e-mail. Two final things, a big big thank you to the Branch committee for their help during the planning stages and the dates for next year's festival, they are October 25th-30th 2010. p.s Yes, we are still at St Andrew's and Blackfriars Halls. Martin Ward Festival Organiser

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Mild Beers


Mild Beers at Norwich Beer Festival orwich Beer Festival has always been noted for a wide variety of darker beers. Usually I head for the strong stuff - the old ales, stouts and barley wines - but this year I joined Des O'Brien of the beer festival's ordering committee - and a keen mild drinker - to see what we had in the way of milds.


‘Mild’ is often interpreted to mean a dark beer around 3.5% ABV - but it doesn’t have to be light in alcohol (Sarah Hughes certainly isn’t, weighing in at 6 %!) and it doesn’t actually have to be dark, either, though most examples of the style are. The one indispensable element of the style is that it must be lightly hopped - so it's not bitter. In my mind, that makes it a great drink for those who say they ‘don’t like beer’ - often, just drinkers who have been put off traditional English bitters by the higher amount of bittering hops used. Magg’s Magnificent Mild, from West Berkshire Brewery, has a name that makes big claims. Would it live up to its magnificent billing? We found it highly drinkable at 3.8%, with a big aroma, big palate, a teasingly large amount of hops for a mild (just testing the boundaries of the style!), and then once the bitterness died away, a nice caramel aftertaste. Des said “It’s not an imposing 32

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beer, but it’s nice and clean and drinks well.” Next up was Mill Green Mawkin, 2.9%, from Suffolk. This had a grainy aroma, and quite a grainy taste, but a thin mouthfeel and rather a hoppy finish. It was sour, rather than dry - Des called it “almost lactic”. We agreed we'd move on rather quickly to the next. Holdens Dark Mild is brewed in Dudley, West Midlands, a traditional home of the mild style. Lots of toffee apples and brown sugar in this mild, with some good nutty flavours and not much at all in the way of hops. “Not complex but clean”, Des commented, “but I think it could grow on you.” (Later on in the festival, I went back and had a pint - very refreshing and tasty at 3.7%.)

of three flavours - caramel, grain, and fruit. Brains certainly had the caramel and fruit, but it didn’t have much on the grainy side. The next in line, Gravediggers Ale from the Church End Brewery in Warwickshire, was a complete contrast with its very roasty aroma and flavours; so much grain it practically tasted of the malting floor. With chocolate and candy tastes, it had a nice clean, sweet finish. “A lot of flavour for 3.8%,” Des said.

Holt’s Mild comes from Manchester and is what Des calls “a 1940s style mild” - a bit thin, fairly heavily hopped for the style, with candy aromas but not much residual sugar in the taste. We found that while it was a pleasant enough drink at 3.2%, but it didn't do very much for us - “it would be a pity if people thought all milds were like this”, was Des’s comment.

We went on to one of the stronger milds, Banks & Taylor’s Black Dragon Mild at 4.3%. This was very, very roasty and grainy indeed, but to the extent that Des and I both found it unbalanced, with its very dry aftertaste - Des commented “It’s a one-trick pony”. When we dropped right down in gravity to Bateman’s Mild at 3%, we were rewarded by a much more balanced and satisfying ale - candy aromas, chocolate and grain flavours, sweet, and with a powerfully dry finish. “Mr Bateman gets it right again,” Des said, though I must admit I found the dry finish left me slightly thirsty... time for another one!

We went on to Brains Dark, from Cardiff - with a rather thin mouthfeel at 3.5%, but with lots more fruit. Des believes every mild should have a mix

Bathams Mild is another West Midlands beer, made at Brierly Hill, not far from Dudley. What a contrast with the roasty Banks & Taylor brew - this was

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NORFOLK NIPS | Mild Beers all toffee apples on the nose, very fruity and sweet, full in flavour, and with a nice rounded mouthfeel. We scored it as highly as the Batemans, though Des commented, “For me, the Batemans is a better flavour, but this is very well put together. It’s a classic example of a West Midlands Mild sweet, caramelly, not overly hopped, and terrifically well balanced and moreish.” Moreish? He enlightened me “You always think when you're drinking a West Midlands mild - where’s the next one?” The East Anglian style is rather different. Des remembers Bullards - “full of grain and roast chocolate malts”. So we went on to a number of local ales to see how they captured the spirit of an East Anglian mild. Front Street Festival Mild didn't impress us - very sweet, with burned and vinegary flavours, but almost no aftertaste. “Lots of flavour,” Des said, “but not the right flavours.” We found Woodforde’s Mardlers, at 3.5%, was also a little thin, and rather sugary (I have to say I was disappointed as I have had some very nice Mardlers indeed on other occasions, so perhaps this wasn't typical). Square Mild, from Norfolk Square, also seemed a little attenuated, and lightweight for 4%, though its apply aroma and fresh, clean taste made it thoroughly drinkable. On to Wolf's Woild Moild, at 4.8%, with a nice enough aroma and sweet, full taste, with even a little liquorice

creeping in. We both felt it was too well hopped for a mild, though. Waveney's East Coast Mild also, Des thought, wasn't quite “true to style”, with a candy aroma, roasty and very dry flavour, and some unfermented sugars - “more of a red beer than a mild”. Which left us with two ‘finalists’. Elmtree Brewery’s Nightlight, last year's beer of the festival, is a mild in the tradition of Sarah Hughes dark, full, high in alcohol at 5.7%, and very well rounded, with fruitiness and hops in good balance. Really wonderful. But meeting Des’s criteria for a real East Anglian mild was The Squirrel’s Nuts from Beeston Brewery. Toffee and grainy aromas - a real malt-kiln nose - were followed by the promised nutty flavours and an aftertaste of roast chestnuts. All of that for only 3.5% alcohol! “A total contrast to the West Midlands milds,” Des said, “It has no residual sweetness - full of grain and roast flavours.” Probably our favourites of the day, besides Nightlight and Squirrel's Nuts, were Batemans, Bathams, Gravediggers Ale, and Maggs Magnificent Mild. What's interesting about this list is that some of the most successful milds, in our opinions, were the lightest in alcohol; with the honourable exception of Nightlight, few milds over 3.8% made it into our final cut. That just proves that it's the brewer's craft, in squeezing the most flavour out of a limited gravity, that really

matters - not the percentage on the pump clip. Mild doesn’t only come in the dark variety, though. We had two very fine light milds at the festival. Timothy Taylor Golden Best doesn’t use the word ‘mild’ on the label, but nonetheless it’s a light mild, refreshing at 3.5% but full in mouthfeel and extremely drinkable. We were both impressed by a local contribution - Ragged Robin from Old Chimneys, at Market Weston, Suffolk. This too weighs in at 3.5% and had plenty of flavour, quite sweet, with a full mouthfeel, and refreshing finish. Unfortunately we only had one firkin of this delightful beer - perhaps we should order more next year? Andrea Kirkby

Dark and a bit scary - not like all milds!

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Festival awards


Beers of the festival 2009 inner of the Gold award in the 'Beer Of The Festival' public voting at the 32nd Norwich Beer Festival was Old Chimneys Red Clover, a 6.0% ABV blended old ale spiced with cloves. Old Chimneys Brewery is based at Market Weston, in North Suffolk.


Silver went to Mauldons Black Adder, a 5.3% dark bitter stout which was aged in oak casks for the festival, and Bronze went to Winter's Golden, a 4.1% hoppy golden ale from Norwich's own Winter's Brewery. Category winners were: Mild - Gold: Sarah Hughes Ruby Mild (6.0% ABV); Silver: Beeston The Squirrels Nuts (3.5%); Bronze: Waveney Brewery East Coast Mild (3.9%). Bitter - Gold: Elmtree Burston Cuckoo (3.8%); Silver: West Berkshire Old Father Thames (3.4%); Bronze: Grain Oak (3.8%). Best Bitter - Gold: Waveney Brewing Welterweight (4.2%); Silver: Harviestoun Hoptober Fest (4.0%); Bronze: Woodforde's Tinseltoes (4.4%). Strong Bitter - Gold: Fat Cat Wild Cat (5.0%); Silver: Oakham Attila (7.5%); Bronze: Green Jack Ripper (8.5%).


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Old, Stout & Porter - Gold: Mauldons Black Adder (5.3%); Silver: Downton Chocolate Orange Delight (5.8%); Bronze: Humpty Dumpty Reedham Porter (5.4%).

Golden Beers - Gold: Winter's Golden (4.1%); Silver: Hornbeam Lemon Blossom (3.7%); Bronze: Crouch Vale Amarillo (5.0%). Cider - Rich’s Legbender.

Speciality - Gold: Old Chimneys Red Clover (6.0%); Silver: Whitstable Raspberry Wheat (5.2%); Bronze: Opa Hay Wheat (4.2%).

Perry - Hecks Blakeny Red Perry. Foreign Beer - Heller Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Marzen. Des O’Brien

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Open all day every day, food is served:Monday 12-2 12-2 & 6-9 Tuesday to Sunday

Offering four real ales and quality home-cooked food we are sure you will have a great time. 17th Century timber beamed pub.

12-3 Sunday for plated home cooked Sunday lunches with homemade Yorkshire puddings and fresh vegetables. Booking advised if dining.

Quiz Nights every Wednesday from 8.30pm A meat raffle is held every Sunday at 4:30 pm.

From Norwich & Acle head to Salhouse and at the mini roundabout follow the sign to Wroxham, we are 200yds on the right. ‘Andy Russell finds plenty of appeal with a family outing to BT Openzone available

a 17th century pub’ - EDP Eating out October 2009

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West Norfolk CAMRA Retrospective s the end of the year approaches, I thought it would be fun to look back at some of the things our branch has done during 2009.


We have visited several Breweries both local and a little further afield. It always strikes me that breweries, much like pubs, are instilled with the personalities of their brewers. The difference being that exept for those with visitor facillities the only way that personality reaches most of their customers is through the quality and character of their products not just in the flavour but in the style of pumpclips chosen and, of course, the names of the beers! The underlying principle of many seems to include a great deal of humour, and it's nice to meet people whose products you have sampled and see if they match up to your expectations! This year we visited Belvoir Brewery near Melton Mowbray, “Belvoir” is pronounced “beaver” and of course there were very non PC “I love beaver” badges for all (not so popular with female members!). The brewery itself was very impressive with an excellent 36

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visitor facillity and bar/restaurant, they have big plans and deserve to suceed. Melton itself is very beautiful and rightly famous for it’s pork pies. It also has all it's GBG pubs in one street running towards the railway station you couldn't really go wrong. Some stayed in the town others are motorhome folk and found a home nearby (the council didn’t have time to evict them). Later in the year we made a visit to a brewery in Bury St. Edmunds (No not that one!), The Old Cannon Brewery situated in the like named pub. The brewery plant is partially visible inside the pub and on the night of our visit brewing had been taking place with the attendant smells! The brewer gave us a talk which started with him checking the coppers by lifting himself on his arm muscles inside only to emerge, peering over the edge again like some brewing Gollum, thank goodness he didn’t say “My precious”. The brewery is run in a very energetic way by this extreme sports enthusiast who may just have invented extreme brewing! The brewery runs a very lively beer festival each year and was in preperation for it. We met up with some of Craig’s friends there, being

fellow colonials (You know, Americans), they provided very entertaining company. By the way Craig, when are you gonna write about beer from a Transatlantic perspective for us? Our third visit was Blackfriars in Gt. Yarmouth and was very entertaining once we found it (ask Tim). I won’t go into detail as Jeff has already covered this subject, but the visitor setup is nicely thought out and the glass placed in your hand in the waiting area never seemed to empty for more than 10 seconds! We also attempted to visit a Nottingham brewery but never managed to get a reply from them by phone or email. We also try to get out and about locally for either social or campaigning purposes. The first outing was a social at the Walpole Cross Keys which is the name both of the pub and village, Ros organised a walk around the local fens and had lunch in the carvery. Unfortunately very shortly after this, the pub was closed due to the roof being declared unsafe! Another pub lost, I hope it wasn't my fault it could be bad to be declared a pub Jonah! We visited The Union Jack at Roydon to award them our

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NORFOLK NIPS | Retrospective branch POTY 2009, and then later to Whin Hill Cider for the presentation of a Regional CAMRA cider award. The second occasion allowed me to meet some of our Cider enthusiasts, how they stay sober long enough to judge this fruit based biofuel I've no idea! During the summer we had a walk around Roydon and Congham organized by Phil Buffham who is normally just Buff like I’m Stig. It was incredibly hot and due to bad timing I missed the first leg, a shame as I also missed Phil's carefully researched local history! We stopped at the Anvil, Congham and then made our way to Roydon and the Union

Jack. Thanks to the folk at the Anvil who furnished me with a large bottle of water.

We occasionally get in a walk before a meeting and both this year were organised by Jim & Pete (plus Fred) of Whin Hill Cider one around Burham Thorpe and one along the beach and around the banded cliffs at Hunstanton. It's amazing how thirsty all these walk makes you! As you can see for a small branch we get around and have had a lot of fun doing it, this of course does not include contacts made distributing Nips/Cask Force or our surveying activities.

We are planning an out of area foray to Masham in North Yorkshire to include visits to Theakston’s and Black Sheep on or about 27th-28th March 2010. If you would like to join us contact me by email (on the info panel). Any N&N takers? If this sounds like your sort of fun come and meet us all at a branch meeting soon. Finally, I would like to wish a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everbody from all of us at West Norfolk CAMRA. Have a good one! Chris Lucas (Stig)


Up to 8 Real Ales (4 on gravity) 3 Belgian Fruit Beers Outstanding selection of Scottish malt & Irish Whisky Opening Hours 12pm to 11pm weekdays & Sunday 12pm to 12am Friday & Saturday Closed Mondays (Except Bank Holidays)

Lunchtime Meals

162 Yarmouth Road, Broome, Bungay NR35 2NZ Tel: 01986 893325

12pm to 2.30pm weekdays 12pm to 4pm Sundays

Evening Meals

On the 580 and 588 Anglia Bus routes

6.30pm to 9pm Weds to Sat (Booking is advisable)

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He should have gone to the


The Gatehouse Pub 391 Dereham Road, Norwich NR5 8QJ 01603 620340

FOUR REAL ALES Live Music, Friday & Saturday Large garden overlooking the River Wensum Fine Real Ales,lagers,wines and spirits All Sky Sports • A traditional pub Good covered outside areas • Doggies welcome

“a festival of beers every day”

OPEN Mon - Thurs 12-11 Fri & Sat 12-12 • Sunday 12-11


Open Saturdays, Mondays and Tuesdays 11am-4pm

Picturesque riverside walks, RSPB reserve, On Norwich’s doorstep. Moorings available. Open Fire, Real Ales.

All our bottle conditioned beers are available.

Good traditional Home Cooked Food,

Also 10 & 20L polypins can be ordered

Main meals from £6.95 All Functions catered for. Live Music, Quiz Nights. Small Children and Dog friendly. You will receive a Warm and Friendly Welcome from Sonia, Andy and All at the Staff at The Ferry Ferry Road, Surlingham, Norwich, Norfolk. NR14 7AR Tel: 01508 538659 Email:

Website: 38

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We are also providing space for local artists to hang their work so you can usually replenish your taste buds while exercising your eyeballs!

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NORFOLK NIPS | Thetford Real Ale Scene

Real Ale Renaissance in Thetford


he news from Thetford the ancient capital of South West Norfolk just gets better and better.

For several years now the only pub worthy of the Good Beer Guide in the town was The Albion run by two generations of the Middlebrook family since 1969, famous for it's straightforward drinkers pub style and it's consistently good Greene King beers. The Albion has now been joined by two potential candidates, The Dolphin was taken on by a Mother & Son management team last year who single (double?) handedly revitalised this one time GBG pub, once a

venue for the most heavily attended W. Norfolk CAMRA meeting. They turned the pub into an excellent real ale venue within the limits of the brewery's range of guest beers and attracted growing numbers of customers. Only being a management team they knew a bid for the lease would see them move on, this occured when the manager of the Black Horse in Thetford put in a succesful bid. It seemed they would be lost to the town, but no! In a plot twist worthy of any soap opera, having left the brewery, they took over the management of the Black Horse. The Black

Horse is a free house and has given them a wider choice of beers the response has been superb and the “Horse� is jumping! (sorry!) They have booked the Carnegie Rooms in the town to hold a beer fest next May, something already in the pipeline before their move. The Dolphin also continues to sell good real ale, under it's new management. So all in all a win win series of events for real ale enthusiasts locally and hopefully like the real renaissance it'll spread to other local towns because it really needs to! Chris Lucas

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BARRELIEF Norwich’s oldest alehouse

Four Real Ales


Aspells Cider & over 50 Malt Whiskies. Food served from 12noon-7pm Monday to Saturday. 12noon-5pm Sunday Overall Winner - Best Floral Public House Norwich In Bloom Awards

Your local Bar Relief to cover for your Holidays or Sickness. Personal Licence Holder. Food Hygiene Certificated. Please Call Brian Mayhew on 01603 301356 or 07714657752 to discuss your requirements

17 Bishopgate, Norwich NR3 1RZ 01603 667423




Traditional Norfolk Free House

Four Real Ales always available including Woodfordes Wherry, Greene King IPA and two ever-changing guest ales Sandwiches always available Function rooms for hire


Angel Gardens Free House

Under same ownership for 21 years

Six reasonably priced Real Ales including three guest ales Home Cooked Food • Live Music on Saturdays

Beer Garden with heated smoking shelter

2 Bars (with one for Private Hire) Ample Car Parking

Open daily 11am-2.30pm & 5.30pm - 11pm Wishing all our customers a healthy and prosperous 2010

Live music Christmas eve with TERRY ADAMS and New Years eve with DAVIE .J

8 Louden Rd, Cromer NR27 9EF

96 Angel Rd, Norwich NR3 3HT 01603 427490 email:

(Just 3 mins walk from the Sea) 40

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West Norfolk CAMRA AGM


ur 2009 AGM was held at Narborough social club on 13th October 2009.

After the candidates withdrew, a vote was taken under the supervision of the Regional Director. Following a vote Phil Buffham was elected to chair.

This is a synopsis of the main happenings.

Voting for New Committee: Two candidates came forward for the post of Branch Chairman: Tim Spitzer and Phil Buffham. Nominated Nige Bruce Treasurer Tim Secretary Nige Membership Secretary Steve Press & Publicity Tim Press & Publicity Assistant Tim Pubs Officer Tim Pubs Preservation Officer Tim Nips Liaison Jeff Webmaster Tim Cider Tim Branch Contact Phil Chairman

It was agreed that Tim should continue to chair until the end of this meeting. All other post holders were returned unopposed. All candidates listed below agreed to serve in post if elected.

Seconded Chris Tony Chris Bruce Nige Jim Jim Jeff Jeff Bruce Jeff Jim Tony

Post Holder Tim Spitzer (not elected) Phil Buffham (elected) Jim Fergusson Ian Bailey Jeff Hoyle Bruce Ward Andrea Briers Ian Bailey Andrea Briers Chris Lucas Nigel Nudds Andrea Briers Bruce Ward

Social Secretary: It was agreed to continue without one; Jackie Lucas is OK to continue with a large part of the work but does not wish to hold the post formally. Anything she does not do will continue to be done on an ad hoc basis. Public Affairs Officer: Nobody came forward for this post. As you can see the main change was we now have a New Chair, Phil Buffham who ran on a "Winds of Change" ticket hoping to encourage new active members within the branch, increase campaigning and even the holy grail, a beer festival held by the branch. An interesting year ahead I suspect. Tim has been our Chair for Nine years and was granted a vote of thanks by all present, he will continue as our Norwich pubcrawl guru! Andrea Briers, Regonal Director thanked the branch for it's work in the last year. The election details are reproduced, with thanks, from our Secretary's full minutes. Chris Lucas

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The Burston Crown Main Rd, Terrington st John, Cambs PE14 7RR 01945 881097

Open seven days a week 12noon -2pm & 6 - 11pm Serving traditional home cooked food with a weekly specials board and choice of vegetarian dishes. Children welcome Local real ales from Woods and Woodfordes plus weekly changing guests

Jonj, Frances, Bev and Steve welcome you to our 16th Century country pub. We offer a fine range of gravity fed real ales, excellent bar and restuarant food every day and a welcoming, warm atmosphere. Every Thursday evening we have a busker’s night and host live music every alternate Sunday.

+ John Parker Sun Dec 20th – live music with Charlie Harper

Christmas Eve – Busker’s Special er AKA New Year’s Eve – Beach Party + music by Harp ails det for m row See www.burstonc

01379 741257

Earle Arms Heydon

Traditional Norfolk freehouse and restaurant

Bookings now being taken for Christmas 3 Real Ales always available Woodfordes Wherry, Adnams Bitter and One Guest

01263 587376 Satnav: NR11 6AD (Just off B1149 Holt - Norwich Rd) 42

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Simon and Karen welcome you all to their traditional family pub. Great selection of real ales (new Guest ale every Friday) Fine dining and excellent company

Complimentary bottle of Wine with all table reservations (min 4 persons) Offer available until February 2010.

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NORFOLK NIPS | Campaigning trip 2009

September County Campaigning Trip 2009 n a clear autumnal evening a group of 14 CAMRA stalwarts headed north from the city, passing the sadly-closed Erpingham Spread Eagle, on the way to our first very isolated country pub. But the car park was full of top-range motors, so where had we come on this beautiful clear and cloudless night? The Saracens Head at Wolterton was completely booked for diners but the landlady graciously pulled us our pint of Adnams bitter (£3.10) and ushered us into the walled garden of this noble brick building where we pondered the night sky. Some also cast a longing eye over the extensive menu. It was time to move onto the village of Aldborough with its


extensive green and its two pubs on opposite sides. The Black Boys is a traditional village pub, dartboard prominent, offering Adnams and GK IPA at £2.80 and both in good form. The Old Red Lion has an attractive open fireplace and hundreds of pump clips on the ceiling, though tonight only Adnams, GK and our first Norfolk beer, Woodforde’s Wherry were available at £2.60.

£2.60 and all on top form. With vinyl playing in the corner and after spinning the Norfolk twister on the ceiling the party then indulged in some competitive Bull ringing. As our visit was so enjoyable our stay was extended a little which meant less time in the 2010GBG listed Skeyton Goat, another pub full of diners. The Spitfire was fine and was offered alongside Wherry and Adnams.

Onto the A140 now and the Alby Horseshoes which, for a music-loving game-playing beer enthusiast proved to be the highlight of the trip. Wherry and Mardlers Mild, Nethergate Azzaskunk, Marston’s Jennings Cumberland were soon followed by Tipples Elm Hill Gold, all at

On reflection it seems a shame that Norfolk beers were not more in evidence on our charabanc crawl as we have 20-odd breweries in the county, but well done to all the pubs for their welcome. Oh, and come back soon the Spread Eagle. Mont

Beer Festival Diary 18 -21 Dec Hockering Victoria Beer Festival. Dec18 - 20 The Greyhound at Hickling. Promoted in aid of ‘The Wherry Trust’. Local cask ales and ciders available. 15 - 16 Jan 2010 Ely Winter Beer Festival. Maltings, Ship Lane, Ely CB7 4BB Opening times Fri 15 12.00- 22.00 Sat 16 12.00- 18.00. 20 – 23 Jan CAMRA National Winter Ales Festival, Sheridan Suite, Oldham Road, Manchester M40 8EA. 21- 23 Jan 3rd Colchester Winter Ale Festival, Colchester Arts Centre, Open daily 12 noon -11pm 21- 23 Jan 14th Cambridge Winter Ale Festival, at The University Social Club, Mill Lane.

4 – 6 Feb Chelmsford Winter Beer Festival, Essex County Council Social Club (Triangle Club), Duke St, Chelmsford CM1 1LX 8 – 14 Feb Trafford Arms, Norwich 17th Valentine Beer Festival. 26 -27 Feb Chappel Winter Beer Festival. East Anglian Railway Museum, Chappel, Essex. 10 – 12 Mar London Drinker Beer & Cider Festival, Camden Centre, Bidborough Street, London, WC1H 9AU. (Close to Kings Cross/St Pancras). 18 – 20 Mar St Neots Booze on the Ouze Beer Festival. Priory Centre,Priory Lane, St Neots, Cambridge, PE19 2BH

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NORFOLK NIPS | Cask Ale on the up

“Cask Ale is now a star performer” he newly published Cask Ale Report: Britain’s National Drink confirms that consumption of cask ale is on the increase despite a downturn in the pub trade in general.


The findings of this report revealed that between January and June this year the sales of lagers, wine and spirits were all down while cask ale volume rose by one per cent. Cask ale is outperforming every other beer style and the only beer to report sales growth in the last year. This report states sales of cask ale is boosted by a jump in women drinkers and an affluent consumer base.

Pubs sold 2.3 million more pints of cask ale in the first half of this year than in the same six months last year.

Some of the key features highlighted in the report include:

3,000 new pubs put cask ale on tap in 12 months to June this year.

Total number of real ale drinkers rose to 8.5 million

400,000 drinkers tried cask ale for the first time in 2008.

There are now more breweries trading than at any time in the past 60 years. For more information on this report consult CAMRA’s National website and download “Cask Ale Report (Oct 2009)” from the site’s home page.

Mauldons take over Norwich Pub auldons Brewery based in Sudbury have taken over The Cottage, Silver Road, Norwich. The Freehouse will re-open on Thursday evening from 7 pm on the 10th December.


The Cottage has been completely refurbished and will be run as a real ale pub with

ten ales available. These beers will be sourced from local brewers as well as proven favourites and will rotate alongside the Black Adder Brewery’s award winners. Mauldons owner Steve Sims says he is delighted that Clive and Sally Mann have agreed to manage the Cottage for them.

Clive and Sally joined Mauldons last November to help set up and run our first pub, The Brewery Tap in Sudbury. They have done a fantastic job for us and we feel sure they will be warmly welcomed back to Norwich.

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The King’s Head KEG FREE HOUSE

Open 12.00noon - 11.00pm Monday to Saturday 12.00noon - 10.30pm Sunday Run by enthusiastic drinkers and CAMRA members.

Keg Free Zone 14 Hand Pumps Norfolk Ales and Cider Mild always available Worldwide Bottled Beers Belgian Beers Bar Billiards Television-free

lk o f r o N A R CAM ear Y e h t f o b u P 8 2006 & 200 Dating from the 14th century, the pub has been restored to a Victorian style. The Kings Head, 42 Magdalen Street, Norwich NR3 1JE Telephone: 01603 620468


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Good Beer Guide 2011 Nominations s you have probably seen in the last two editions of NIPS I have been inviting nominations for possible inclusion in the next CAMRA National Good Beer Guide. The number of recommendations received so far has been very good. Please see below the revised list of new GBG 2011 nominations:


Banham The Banham Barrel Cromer Dolphin Cromer Red Lion Gt Yarmouth Oliver Twist Hempton Bell Heydon Earle Arms Holt Kings Head Kenninghall White Horse Lyng Fox & Hounds Norwich Arts Centre

Norwich Franks Bar Norwich Micawbers Norwich Murderers/Gardeners Norwich Nelson Norwich Rose (Queens Road) Norwich Vine Old Costessey Bush Reedham Ferry Sheringham The Crown Stiffkey Red Lion Swanton Morley Darbys Tacolneston Pelican Tibenham Greyhound Wells-next-the-Sea Edinburgh Hotel Wells-next-the-Sea Crown Wreningham Bird in Hand Wymondham Cross Keys

any new nominations no later than 31st December 2009. With the deadline for nominations fast approaches it is now the time of year again that I am asking for volunteers to help survey for the next CAMRA National Good Beer Guide. If you have surveyed before or are new to GBG surveying and would be prepared to survey for The 2011 GBG, please contact me at:

The deadline is now fast approaching so please send

I look forward to hearing from you!

Or by post to: Warren Wordsworth 16 Grove Avenue, Norwich NR1 2QD

Mark & Marie offer you a warm welcome to the

Fox and Hounds Heacham Home of The Fox Brewery We are a free house specialising in real ales. The first pub in Heacham to be in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide.

Alby HorseShoes Inn Freehouse Situated on the A140 Norwich/Cromer Road

4 Real Ales – Home cooked Food Live Music every Tuesday Quiz Night Thursday

5 STAR ESTABLISHMENT NNDC “Scores on the Doors” In the 2010 Good Beer Guide

10th Easter Beer Festival

Food Hygiene Rating HHHHH

Friday April 2nd to Monday April 5th With Live Music every night

Margaret & Richard Rushmer look forward to meeting you

See website for details -

01263 761378

Tel: 01485 570345


22 Station Rd, Heacham, Norfolk PE31 7EX

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Pub Signs


Norfolk pub sign postcards aurice Bobbitt of Norwich has always had a deep interest in the art of pub signs, particularly Norfolk pub signs. Over the years he has lovingly photographed scores of these signs. Now in association with Classic Prints he has produced a set of 60 postcards depicting different examples of these fascinating illustrations. Particularly now that the traditional pub is under threat, these pictures provide a reminder of the part these ‘community centres’ play in the social history of Norfolk.


The packs of 60 cards are available at £9.00 per set plus postage from:

Classic Prints of Hingham email: or phone 01953 850794 for

details. They are also available on ebay. Nige

A tawny red strong bitter with a malt and fruit aroma. This warming ale has a full bodied soft finish.

The London Tavern Free House

Church St, Attleborough Tel :01953 457415 Great real ales, fine wines and spirits. Traditional food served daily, pre-booked evening meals, Sunday roasts and Childrens menu. Meals for large parties up to 30 catered for in our funtion room, choice of set menu’s. Bookings only.

Parking, Disabled facilities, Smokers sheltered garden, and Beer garden. Well behaved dogs on leads welcome. Christenings, Funerals, Intimate Weddings / Civil Ceremonies catered for


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NORFOLK NIPS | Beer & Music

Music & Real Ale King’s Head Hotel, Beccles, Suffolk Adnams Bitter and Broadside plus special house beer Matilda’s Revenge, brewed by local brewery Opa Hays in honour of the resident ghost, and guest beers. Every Sunday evening Red Beans ‘n’ Rice New Orleans Jazz Band Feathers Hotel, Market Place, Holt Greene King Abbot Ale and IPA First Friday every month – Lumiere Rouge Ragtime Band


01493 701880

Acle Recreation Centre, Bridewell Lane, Acle Real Ales include Adnams Bitter, Theakstons and Tipples Redhead

The Quality Hotel (Filby Suite), Bowthorpe, Norwich (off Dereham Road) Fat Cat Bitter is being laid on specially for the jazz sessions.

Friday 5th March Rod Mason and his Hot Five (from Germany), including former local favourite Sean Moyses on Banjo, celebrating the band’s 25th anniversary this year. NB. Sessions are now taking place on Fridays instead of Tuesdays. Tickets/enquiries – Brian Davis

Marsham Arms, nr Hevingham (B1149 Norwich-Holt Road) Adnams Bitter, plus alternating guests including Adnams Broadside and Woodforde’s Wherry Third Friday every month – Lumiere Rouge Ragtime Band Crown Inn, Banningham (Nr Aylsham) Adnams Broadside, Greene King IPA and Abbot Ale

Tuesday 9th February – New Orleans Z’Hulus. New Orleans style band led by British musician Brian Turnock, now living in Belgium, and featuring musicians from Belgium, Germany, Holland and France.

Sunday 21st February (1.30 to 4.30 pm) - Norfolk Dixieland Jazz Band (Phone 01263 733534 for further details)

Tickets/enquiries – Rod Playford 01362 668576

Northrepps Cottage Country Hotel, Nut Lane, Northrepps (Nr Cromer) Greene King Abbot Ale and IPA

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Beer & Music


Sunday 13th December ( Special Christmas Jazz Carvery from 12.00 – 4.00 pm) – Chris Wigley’s Phoenix Jazz Quartet. No jazz during January and February, but monthly Sunday Jazz Carveries resume on Sunday 14th March with the same band. (Phone 01263 579202 for further details) George and Dragon, Newton by Castle Acre Elgoods Cambridge plus local guest beers Second Tuesday every month – Black Bowler Hat Jazz Band (Also folk music on first Thursday every month) Bell Inn, Hempton (Nr Fakenham) Woodforde’s Wherry, John Smiths Cask and guest beers Second and Fourth Thursday every month – Black Bowler Hat Jazz Band Dereham Jazz Society, Lakeside Country Club, Quarry Lane, Lyng (nr Dereham) Adnams beers plus guest beers on handpump Wednesday 20th January – Barry Palser’s Selected Six, including Alan Gresty on Trumpet, Tony Teal (clarinet & sax), Pete Gregory (guitar & banjo), Peter Baker (bass) and Stu Watcham (drums)


| WINTER 2009 / 2010

The Buck Inn, The Street, Flixton, Suffolk Woodforde’s Mardler’s, Morland Original and Adnams Bitter are the regulars at present, but in addition there are guest beers, and an increased selection in the summer months Every Thursday Sole Bay Jazz Band

MAINSTREAM / MODERN JAZZ Green Man, Wroxham Rackheath Woodforde’s Wherry, Adnams Bitter and Broadside plus guests Every Tuesday – Full programme consisting of various bands and musicians. For further details, phone Barbara Capocci on 01603 413443, or e-mail NB. No jazz on 29th December and 5th January. Sessions resume Tuesday 12th January. Dereham Jazz Society, Lakeside Country Club, Quarry Lane, Lyng (nr Dereham) Adnams beers plus guest beers on handpump Every Wednesday – Full programme consisting of various bands and musicians in varied styles, which usually includes one ‘traditional’ session each month (See above).

NB. Closed for Christmas break on 23rd and 30th December. Sessions resume Wednesday 6th January. For further details phone 01328 863511 or 01362 696741 or visit website Keith Chettleburgh

Folk in the East (& West) ‘The lands like a bog, with rain upon rain, Wet upon wet upon wet, Nine months of Winter & three months bad weather, and never a dry day yet, No never a drying day yet’ (Bewcastle: Maddy Prior / Rick Kemp) So what can drag you out from a warm house into East Anglia’s winter weather? Of the regular singer / musician sessions and starting in the city on Tuesday evenings at The Duke of Wellington Waterloo Road, for the von Krapp Family: they are not a family, no one is called von Krapp but for well played melodeon, fiddles, pipes & guitar they take a lot of beating. Micawbers, Pottergate, the Shufflewing sessions are also on a Tuesday evening. On Wednesday the Nelson on Nelson Street has a More than Folk play/sing-around from 20.30 while at the Cider Shed, Sprowston Road, also on Wednesday, you can find the

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NORFOLK NIPS | Beer & Music Irish Session. Jurnets Bar at the Music House, King Street, on Fridays from 20:00 this is an invited musicians evening that includes, rather than being exclusively, folk music (with club m’ship available for regular visitors). Norwich Folk Club meets at the White Horse in Trowse on Friday nights. On the 4th of December they have The Joni Mitchell Project while looking to the New Year the guest is Tony Hall on the 15th of January and Bill Whaley with Dave Fletcher on the 5th of February. On Sunday afternoons from 14.30 it is worth checking out the Cider Shed for live music in many forms, including folk, while later on there is another reason to visit the Nelson for the Sunday evening session from c.20.00 There is a basket full of folkbased events typically taking place once (or twice) a month at pubs throughout our area of which the following is just a sample: Folk at the Railway (Mondays) at the Railway North Elmham The Wisbech Folk Club meet at the Angel Wisbech on Tuesdays. A session takes place at the Reedcutters at Cantley on the 1st Wednesday of the month the 2nd Wednesday is the Burlington Hotel Sheringham while, at the Kings Head at Dereham, folk is on the 3rd Wednesday of the month. The Red Lion in Swaffham is the venue for the (former

Castle Acre) Folk club on the last Wednesday of the month .

( for more information)

The Alby Horseshoes are on the last Thursday of the month with the Cherry Tree at Wicklewood (the Buffy’s Brewery tap) and the Greyhound at Tibenham, at the same time and date. On the 2nd Sunday of the month in the afternoon try the Gatehouse on Dereham Road Norwich. Staying with the Sunday, but in the evening, Meet in the Hedge run an open session of music and poetry at the Wymondham Feathers, on Town Green, from 20.00 with 2010 dates of 31st Jan, 28th Feb & 28th March. Down in the Waveney valley the Geldeston Locks has December dates on Thursdays with Murphy’s Lore on the 3rd, 17th and 27th, Bric-a-Brac on the 10th and a Winter Solstice Special with Old Glory Molly dancers on Monday 21st.

The Norwich Arts Centre has some goodies for the season with Oyster Band (in the unlikely event of any tickets being left!) on Saturday December 5th, a band I’ve never heard called Stars of Sunday League on Friday 15th January and on February 9th the excellent Dervish. Scotland’s finest, Moishe’s Bagel, have the stage on Monday 15th and, in March, Norwich’s very own Horses Brawl (& support) are dragged away from appearances on R3 and the arts section of the Guardian on Thursday 4th.

On the subject of dance Kemps Men will be dancing on the Norwich Lanes from 11.00 on Saturday 12th December (so that is the Belgium Monk, the Birdcage & the Vine for refreshment) while on Boxing Day Saturday 26th they are joining forces with Fiddlesticks (N.West clog dancers) at the Banningham Crown. Looking into the New Year Whittlesea Straw Bear festival takes place between Friday & Sunday (15th-17th January), which seems to be a popular event with certain abstemious Norwich members!

Finally, and returning to December, the Queens Head Wymondham are hosting ‘Christmas with Tallis’ on Sunday 12th (donations £1.00+ suggested) whilst back in the city the cellar of Take 5 is the venue on Monday 14th for Musical Tapas (latin guitar and songs) plus the Rampant Horse Collective with jigs, polkas airs & reels on flutes and fiddles. If you are hosting a gig, folk dance session, or some other vaguely effnic sort of event at a cask conditioned ale venue why not spread the word via these pages or even take an advert? Contact mailing addresses on Page 3. Seasonal Solstice Greetings to All.

WINTERAUTUMN 2009 /2009 2010 | 55

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DUKE of WELLINGTON TRADITIONAL REAL ALE HOUSE 14 REAL ALES GRAVITY SERVED available all year round from our glass fronted tap room

6 MORE ALES ON HAND PUMP CAMRA Good Beer Guide Listed CAMRA Norfolk Pub of the Year 2003

Welcoming REAL FIRE

Open Monday to Saturday 12noon to 11pm Sundays 12noon to 10.30pm

5 Jus t 1 l k e s wa mi nu t t h e f rom re ent Ci t y C

Come and enjoy our Tap Room with a selection of Belgian bottled beers, Schneider Weiss, Erdinger and Dunkel.

91 - 93 WATERLOO ROAD | NORWICH | 01603 441182

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NORFOLK NIPS | Real Ale in Mexico

On the Trail of Real Ale in Mexico: San Miguel de Allende an Miguel de Allende, founded in 1542, is perched 6000 feet above sea level, near the geographical center of Mexico, in the state of Guanajuato. It’s world famous for its colonial architecture, cobblestone streets and breath-taking views. The historic center is a Mexican national monument, but recently the town, along with the nearby sanctuary of Atotonilco has been accorded the prestigious honour of being named a UNESCO World Heritage site.


Artists, poets, musicians and students flock to the San Miguel each year to paint, write, perform and study. There are, of course, many reasons to visit, but added to the long list is the recently opened Cerveza de San Miguel, a

new craft brewery, located on the outskirts of town. Cameron Carroll, and his father Matthew, started the brewery less than two years ago, in a disused handicraft store. Cameron spent time in

San Miguel as a child and has been traveling back and forth for the last ten years. His operation is small scale, he only brews one beer and it’s an American Pale Ale. It can be described as a Sierra Nevada style ale, with a fragrant bouquet and moderate hoppiness. He uses Golding hops instead of the familiar Cascade hops to produce American Pale ale with an English twist! If that doesn’t appeal, besides the full bar, there are 7 other beers on draught, three from the Minerva craft brewery, in Guadalajara. Their Colonial is a Kolsch style lager, Vienna is an Oktoberfest style lager and there is Stout, with a strong flavour of toasted barley and Continued Overleaf

WINTER 2009 / 2010 | 57

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Real Ale in Mexico continued

| NORFOLK NIPS like darkish lager with a robust malty finish. Sol, is a popular Mexican golden lager, with a refreshing taste and mellow flavour.

hints of chocolate and coffee. Grupo Modelo, one of the two big-boy Mexican breweries, provides their Modelo Especial, a pilsner style and the popular Negra Modelo, a

dark Munich Dunkle style with caramel and chocolate flavours and a spicy hop profile. Brewery giant Cerveza Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma is represented by Indio, an ale-

One can enjoy these real ales, either in the shade of a pepper tree in the enclosed patio, in the pub room, complete with dart board, or in the cozy restaurant. The food is reasonably priced and many entrees include the home brew as part of the recipe: beer battered blooming onion, fried green tomatoes and battered shrimp. A good paring is the Pale Ale with one of their wood-fired pizzas. A. Ciurczak

The Kings Arms 22 Hall Rd Norwich NR1 3HQ

Tel: 01603 766361

5th Annual Haggis Bash Monday 25th January Haggis, Neeps and Tatties washed down with a ‘Wee Dram’ and a wide selection of Scottish Ales! Over

40 Cask Ales personally selected from regional and microbreweries across the UK. All styles of beer will be available including many Dark Beers and Real Cider. Beers will be served on Hand pump at the bar or on Gravity from “The Shed of Dreams”.


| WINTER 2009 / 2010

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The Shoulder of Mutton ~ Strumpshaw ~

Fine ales and good food served in a friendly atmosphere Real ales include Adnams Bitter and Broadside plus TWO guest ale (mainly from local breweries) Food served 12-2pm and 7-9pm (Mon-Sat), 12-2pm Sundays Pub games include Darts, Pool, Crib and Petanque!

Ian and Jenny look forward to welcoming you.. Norwich Rd, Strumpshaw, Norwich NR13 4NT

Tel 01603 712274

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The pub with no bar, ales direct from cask. Watch for forthcoming events.

Tongue twizzling food, and great value. Check our website for

Tuesday Lunch QUIZ - 60 questions & a bowl of soup £5.00 Thursday night curry or italian - £8.00 inc. drink voucher Live music every Thursday from 8.45pm. All details on the website.

Real fires. Huge garden. Come & visit Nelson’s local. Walsingham Road, Burnham Thorpe Norfolk PE31 8HN

01328 738241

KINGS HEAD HOLT Six brilliantly kept local ales on offer. Over the past ten months the pub focussed its attention on providing a wide range of well kept local ales for you all to try and thanks to your support we have now offered over a hundred different local guest ales, uncovering some real gems on the way. Along side this we have been providing locals with their old favourites Woodfordes’ Wherry, Adnams’ Bitter and Adnams’ Broadside and we are proud to announce we have been nominated for the Good Beer Guide. Come and relax by the fire in our newly refurbished George’s bar where you can grab a cosy booth or just a stool at the bar while you drink your ale and put the world to rights. Come and try our own real ale ‘King’s Ransom’ exclusive to the king’s head, brewed by Black Friars Brewery.

To find out more you can visit our website, give us a call on 01263 712543, or just come on down and give us a try, you won’t be disappointed!

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The Royal Oak at Poringland Come and enjoy live music on Friday and Saturday at our

EASTER BEER FESTIVAL April 2nd - April 9th Range of 30+ Beers and Ciders available Giant Easter Egg Raffle on sunday for East Anglian Children’s Hospice

We Don’t Have a Big Screen TV, Food Or a Juke Box We do have 17 handpumps, with Real Ale from far and wide, 2 Real Ciders and 2 Real Ales From gravity, a large car park, large beer garden With heated smoking shelter, darts, pool, quizzes And crib. We hold two beer festivals each year. The Royal Oak lies at the heart of the community and new customers are always welcome. Come along and get a real welcome from a real pub selling real ale!!!!!! Nick, Delia And The Team would love to see you soon.

Norwich And Norfolk Pub Of The Year 2007 Norfolk Pub Of The Year 2007 13 years in the Good Beer Guide! A dream of a pub situated in the village of Poringland on the B1332 road to Bungay. The main bus route from Norwich stops right outside. Contact us on

01508 493734 New email:

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FREEMOUSE 49 West End Street, Norwich NR2 4NA 01603 624364

Beer Pub of the Year GOOD PUB GUIDE 2010 - Winner for the 4th time!

Two Times CAMRA National Pub Of The Year (1998 & 2004) Up to THIRTY real ales available all year round

FIFTY BOTTLED BEERS FROM AROUND THE WORLD featuring 25 countries, from Mexico to Mongolia, Jamaica to Japan and China to the Czech Republic


ROLLS STILL 60p Part of the Oakademy Scheme of Excellence


Fat Cat Brewery at the Cidershed, Norwich 98-100 Lawson Rd, Norwich NR3 4LF 01603 624364 UP TO 15 REAL ALES INCLUDING THE FAT CAT RANGE:


01603 788508

Fat Cat Bitter Honey Ale Wild Cat Marmalade Cat Stout Cat

3.8% 4.3% 5.0% 5.5% 4.6%

Issue 151 of Norfolk Nips & Cask Force  

The Winter 2009/2010 edition of the newsletter of the Norfolk Branches of the Campaign For Real Ale (CAMRA).

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