Parish Notices

Not my usual style, perhaps, but I wanted to mention several events and happenings.

First up, a beer festival at a pub over the Easter holiday. OK, there's slightly more to it. Amber Ales are holding a Derbyshire Dozen festival at their pub, the Talbot Taphouse. The lineup features new brews such as Ginger Blond (with fresh root ginger), Damson Porter (with locally grown fruit), Honey Rye, Breakfast Stout (with espresso) and a Braggot (50/50 honey and barley, matured in cask for a year). Plus a bunch of collaboration brews and new beers from other brewers in the county. Starts at noon on Good Friday. If you snooze, you lose...

Advance warning now of a summer festival. The General Havelock in Ilkeston is practically an all-year-round festival anyway with anything up to forty beers and ciders available some weekends. But between the first and fifth of June, there will be over a hundred casks on offer along with the promise of keg beer that isn't the usual smooth, if you see what I mean...

Next, three cheers for one of my favourite breweries. Thornbridge have come a long way since the days of a brewkit shoehorned into an outbuilding at the Hall. They've been developing steadily as a pub operator as well in venues such as the renowned Coach & Horses in Dronfield and the arts bar DAda in Sheffield city centre. Another two places have now been added to the estate; the Stag on Psalter Lane and the Beauchief Hotel in conjunction with their sister company, Brewkitchen. Further investment in communities and their pubs - and I for one want to be first in the queue if they announce a grand beer & food banquet to be held in the Beauchief's ballroom. And in recognition of their achievements so far, Thornbridge were awarded the Best Pub Operating Microbrewer at the 2012 Publican Awards

And one last observation. Over the weekend, CAMRA's Tom Stainer did a sterling job by tweeting progress of the AGM to all those followers who didn't fancy a weekend in Torquay. Where even the shop windows are bifocal. So I note that Motion 15 was carried. Said motion stated:  "This Conference believes that CAMRA policy should recognise that “Craft Beer” is beer with a distinctive flavour brewed by artisans". When a consumer group of 100,000+ members passes a definition of the seemingly undefinable, has the tag of 'craft beer' finally come of age? Or is this a crafty reverse ferret?

More hand-crafted aromatic leaf infusion, Vicar?


  1. Hear hear for Tom!
    (though I barely recognised his tweets without "login reqd" on the end of them)

  2. Is Motion 15 a simple, tentative nod to the keg or can we read more into it? Does it suggest the road to CAMRA bring keg/craft/whatever under its roof- representation, GBBF etc?