Roger charts his­tory of UK brew­ing firms

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AWARD-WIN­NING beer writer Roger Protz charts 300 years of Bri­tish brew­ing through the fas­ci­nat­ing and some­times frac­tious his­to­ries of the fam­i­lies still run­ning them in his lat­est ti­tle, The Fam­ily Brew­ers of Bri­tain, writes Neville Grundy.

Pub­lished by the Cam­paign for Real Ale in as­so­ci­a­tion with the In­de­pen­dent Fam­ily Brew­ers of Bri­tain (IFBB), this lav­ishly il­lus­trated book ex­am­ines the con­tri­bu­tion made to Bri­tish brew­ing by its fam­ily brew­ers from the ear­li­est days of com­mer­cial brew­ing through the In­dus­trial Rev­o­lu­tion and Vic­to­rian in­no­va­tions, to the ad­vent of the mod­ern craft beer rev­o­lu­tion.

With in-depth fea­tures and in­ter­views from 30 fam­ily brew­ers, Protz ex­am­ines the past, present and fu­ture of these great brew­ing com­pa­nies.

Read­ers will un­cover some in­trigu­ing fam­ily rows, dis­cover the pi­o­neer­ing fe­male brew­ers, and of course ex­am­ine some of the big­gest threats faced by these Bri­tish in­sti­tu­tions over the cen­turies.

Au­thor Roger Protz is a cam­paigner, broad­caster, and au­thor of dozens of books about beer and brew­ing.

He reg­u­larly ap­pears in the me­dia and has edited 24 edi­tions of CAMRA’s mar­ket-lead­ing Good Beer Guide.

Protz says: “Our fam­ily brew­ers are of­ten over­looked flag bear­ers for real ale and have fas­ci­nat­ing sto­ries to tell.

“Many have been around for hun­dreds of years, sur­viv­ing wars, bomb dam­age, re­ces­sion, threats of in­va­sion, tax­a­tion and merg­ers and have come out the other side as the sturdy back­bone of tra­di­tional beer in this coun­try.

“Some of the brew­ers re­main in build­ings of great ar­chi­tec­tural im­por­tance with gleam­ing cop­pers and wooden fer­ment­ing ves­sels, and a few still de­liver beer by horse-drawn drays and em­ploy coop­ers to fash­ion casks made of oak.

“But they are not liv­ing in the past – they have faced the chal­lenges of the mod­ern beer-drink­ing world and still pro­duce beers that meet the de­mands of to­day’s consumers.”

The Fam­ily Brew­ers of Bri­tain went on sale from CAMRA Books on Septem­ber 9.

To find out more and or­der your copy, visit: tinyurl.com/yxth­s3n4.

I have re­cently heard about a new bar in Burscough Wharf called The Thirsty Duck.

All the draught beer comes from in­de­pen­dent brew­eries with five real ales, and there are also high qual­ity wine, gin and sin­gle malt ranges. I’ll write about it here af­ter I’ve paid a visit.

CAMRA South­port & West Lancs Branch’s web­site is at: www.south­port.camra.org.uk. Find 37,602 real ale venues across the UK at: what­pub. com.

Award-win­ning beer writer Roger Protz charts 300 years of Bri­tish brew­ing

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