Daily Mail

Trouble brewing!

Bitter row over beer magazine’s nude giant logo

- By Neil Sears

IT’S called the Giant Dongle and features on its front page the Cerne Abbas giant... with his most infamous feature proudly on show.

So it’s perhaps not surprising in this day and age that the magazine for ale drinkers has begun to attract complaints about its laddish appearance.

The Giant Dongle is published by the West Dorset branch of the Campaign for Real Ale – Camra. Last night Camra’s chief executive Tom Stainer insisted: ‘The issue isn’t with the giant – it’s historic, and a local landmark. It’s the title of the magazine that’s potentiall­y problemati­c.

‘I’ve spoken to people in the local branch, they appreciate people’s feelings may have changed over time, and they need to listen.

‘Up to a third of our 160,000 members are women, and we need to ensure we don’t do anything that puts people off Camra. Things that were acceptable ten years ago may not be appropriat­e now.’

The Cerne Abbas Giant, a 180ft chalk figure cut into the side of a hill, boasts a 35ft manhood and is one of Dorset’s best known landmarks. He is said to have been created by the Anglo-Saxons in the 8th century.

On the cover of Giant Dongle – which has a circulatio­n of around 2,500 – the giant has been adapted to hold a full pint glass in his left hand. On the national Camra discussion website, advertisin­g executive John Galpin said of the club logo: ‘It’s immature masculinit­y. It sends a message that members are little boys who make penis jokes.

‘Any woman seeing that could be excused for thinking Camra is full of men waving their penises around whilst drinking beer.’

Mr Galpin added: At a time when we are trying to be more inclusive it’s totally inappropri­ate. I for one wouldn’t want anything to do with it.’

Tour guide Gary Chester said: ‘It brings to mind innuendo-filled saucy postcards from Blackpool.’ Mr Chester pointed out that, in recent years, Camra had been taking the ‘ moral high ground’ by

‘I think it’s very funny’

barring beers with sexist and suggestive names from its festivals.

Allowing the Cerne Abbas logo, he added, meant that ‘if nothing else, this shows us not walking the talk’.

Fellow Camra member Will Larter said the logo and magazine title were ‘puerile and offensive’.

The publicatio­n should consider changing its name to the inoffensiv­e ‘ConCernein­g Beer & Pubs’, he suggested.

However, there was support for the use of the giant and the magazine’s name, with West Dorset member Alexandra Bardswell saying: ‘I think it’s great and funny on a magazine, including the word Dongle.’ Tony Wells, a Camra member from Kent, added: ‘I suspect that in 13 years no objections have been raised regarding its name and logo.’

West Dorset Camra chairman Bruce Mead responded: ‘These points were already a topic of discussion. We will continue this at a meeting, taking into considerat­ion the views expressed.’ Last night, Richard Gabe, spokesman for the West Dorset branch, said: ‘We are in an

on-going discussion with our local membership into this issue and will seek to do any appropriat­e action.’

The National Trust owns the land where the giant, now a popular tourist landmark, was cut into the chalk.

The trust believes it was created more than a thousand years ago in late Saxon times. It has been argued that his manhood was a later addition, perhaps designed to ridicule 17th century republican Oliver Cromwell.

In June, there were claims that the Oxford Cheese Company had emasculate­d the giant on a logo which it used on packs of its Cerne Abbas Cheddar by removing his manhood.

 ?? ?? Fertility symbol: Cerne Abbas Giant
Fertility symbol: Cerne Abbas Giant
 ?? ?? Lads’ mag? The latest Giant Dongle
Lads’ mag? The latest Giant Dongle

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United Kingdom