Beer Swap

Simon Miller, a CAMRA member from The High Peak,Tameside and North East Cheshire branch has contacted us to inform us of a beer swap he's organised with Alan from The Yard of Ale brewery (the Surtees, Ferryhill Station) with the Greenfield brewery near his home, http://www.greenfieldbrewery.co.uk He's taking some of Alans beers back to a new micropub in Droylsden, Manchester called the Silly Country. @silly_country (on twitter). He willl be arriving this Sunday, July 1st, at The Surtees Arms, then heading up to the North East coast to sample some more beers. This will probably be Greenfield"s first appearance in CAMRA Durham's area, so why not pop along to the Surtees and give it a try once it's settled?

Pub and Club of the Year

As reported in issue 128 of Durham Drinker, our annual Pub and Club of the Year award-winners have been chose, and we’ve been out and about presenting certificates. Naturally, we took the opportunity to make a night of such presentations.

Daryl Frankland of the Three Horse Shoes
Daryl Frankland of the Three Horse Shoes

The Three Horse Shoes at Leamside, our Country Pub of the Year, marked the occasion by having a special brew from the adjoining Working Hand brewery on tap. Produced to celebrate a 60th birthday, Angry Baby IPA weighed in at 6% and went down very well, with some of the visiting CAMRA party doubting its stated ABV! With the range and quality of ales on offer, this could well be the first of many CAMRA awards for the Three Horse Shoes.

John Collinson, Michael Webster and Dave Thornton
John Collinson, Michael Webster and Dave Thornton

The Victoria, in Durham, took the Town Pub of the Year prize, and the fires in the snug were stoked up to keep us warm as Chairman John Collinson and Pubs Officer Dave Thornton handed over the certificate to landlord Michael Webster. This was the umpteenth CAMRA award collected by the Vic over Michael's 40-odd years at the helm.

Meanwhile, Kay Drummond collected the Club of the Year certificate on a charity fundraising night at Tanfield Lea WMC, at which a packed club raised over £6,000 for prostate cancer research. Buying raffle tickets from someone doing a sponsored silence was interesting...

June 2018 Update

Pubs re-opened with real ale:

  • Stapylton Arms, Hawthorn
  • Seaton Lane Inn, Seaton
  • Dun Cow, Bournmoor
  • Bonny Moor Hen, Stanhope
  • Black Bull, Wolsingham
  • Cross Keys, Esh

Forthcoming socials:

  • June 19th at the Woodman, Gilesgate, Durham from 7:30. Help select the beers for their Beer Festival on July 19th-24th
  • Chester-le-Street Masonic Beer Festival, Masonic Hall, Station Road, Chester le Street, June 28th–30th
  • Regional Pub of the Year judging trips on June 30th and July 14th. Contact us for details
  • Society for the Preservation of Beer from the Wood festival at the Exchange, North Shields, July 5th-7th
  • Durham Brewery birthday – Durham Brewery, Bowburn, August 4th
  • Durham Beer Festival, Durham City Rugby Club, August 30th–September 1st

Pub and Club of the Year 2018 Results

Congratulations to our Pub and Club of the year winners:

Town Pub - The Vic, Durham
Country Pub - Three Horseshoes, Leamside
Club - Tanfield Lea WMC
Town Cider - The Station House, Durham
Country Cider - The Black Lion, Wolsingham

Runner up for Town Pub was The Station House, Durham
2nd place in the Country Pub was The Surtees Arms in Ferryhill Station with The Ship at Middlestone in 3rd place

Press Release: A Festival of Celebrations

Lots to celebrate at the 37th Durham Beer Festival that will be open from 12 noon to 10.30pm on Thursday 31st August, Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd September 2017 at the Durham Students Union building, Dunelm House, New Elvet, Durham City!

This year's festival will be opened around 6.00pm by Mark Anderson, Managing Director of Maxim Brewery, a major sponsor of the beer festival for many years, who is celebrating the tenth anniversary of start of brewing in Maxim's brewery in Houghton-le-Spring.

Also being celebrated this year is the 30th anniversary of Big Lamp Brewery creating their highly drinkable and popular Prince Bishop Ale for the re-starting of the Durham Beer Festivals after a short break in their continuity. To mark the occasion, Michael Webster, landlord of The Victoria in Durham, instead of donating his usual (and much appreciated) Big Lamp Bitter, is donating a cask of Prince Bishop to the festival (with a suitably designed celebratory pump clip) and Big Lamp Brewery will be making another nine gallons of Prince Bishop to be raffled amongst everyone attending the festival!

A third anniversary being celebrated this year is the 15th for Hill Island Brewery in Fowler's Yard, Durham. Michael, the brewer, will be (again) hoping to win the festival's Battle of the Beers - a competition amongst local brewers to produce a beer made to given standards set by the organisers, that has to be launched at the festival - it can't have been on sale anywhere beforehand, i.e. all new beers. This year, the beers can be any style, but have to be made with only English hops and have a strength between 3.7% and 4.5%abv. The other breweries who are submitting brand new beers to this year's competition are Durham Brewery, George Samuels, Yard of Ale, Tyne Bank, Consett Ale Works, Three Brothers and Blackhill. The judging of Battle of the Beers will be undertaken on Thursday afternoon and the results announced when Mark Anderson officially opens the festival around 6.00pm.

Yet another cause for celebration at the festival is the arrival of a brand new Stables Brewery beer, unlike anything else that the great John Taylor has produced. This one is Beamish Rauchig Red - a 4.5%abv made with German beech-smoked malt giving the beer, we're told, a full rich sweet malt smoked flavour with a delicate bitter back taste.

Can't wait to try it? Well come and join us at this year's festival with many things to celebrate!

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