- Cornwall CAMRA "West First Friday" social at Porthleven and Helston
Tuesday 19 July 2022
Friday 1st July saw a small group of CAMRA Kernow branch members meet in the Ship Inn in Porthleven.
Some of the group had walked from Helston, via the Penrose Estate, the edge of Loe Pool and the coastal path to the beautiful harbour of Porthleven; other members arrived via the frequent bus services that serve the village from Helston and Penzance.
On meeting in the Ship, we were greeted by friendly bar staff and a choice of five real ales including Avocet from Exeter Brewery. While sampling the ales available we decided that our next ‘port of call’ would be the Atlantic Inn high above the village. It was a lovely sunny afternoon and as we made our way up to the Atlantic we looked down on some fantastic views of the harbour. At the Atlantic Inn there was a choice of three real ales including Tintagel Brewery’s Harbour Special and Sharp’s Atlantic. We sat outside at the front of the pub and enjoyed the spectacular vista.
Descending back down to the village we visited St Austell Brewery’s Harbour Inn. Here we found a relatively new brew from this brewery called Anthem available. At only 3.8% this is a very tasty addition to Tribute, Proper Job and Hick’s. Again, as the weather was so good, we sat outside on the harbourside and enjoyed watching the world go by.
For those of us heading home in an eastwards direction we caught the bus from Porthleven Square back to Helston. A visit was then made to the Blue Anchor pub were Spingo Middle and Spingo Special were available on the bar including other brews from this pub’s own brewery. This 15th Century pub with a thatched roof and corridor style layout is worth a visit at any time. Again as the weather was so good we gravitated to the large beer garden at the back of the pub. A good afternoon was enjoyed by all!
Report and photos by Jan Curtis
- Cornwall CAMRA Branch Meeting at the Royal Oak, Perranwell
Tuesday 28 June 2022
Since the freedom to hold meetings after the COVID restrictions, Cornwall Branch has held a variety of socials and presentations at pubs plus online committee meetings and an AGM. At last we have been able to have a branch business meeting.
Some of us took the local 36 bus while others started at Perranarworthal down in the River Kennal valley and walked along footpaths following the same route as our event on 1 October 2021, Lockdown Heroes Presentation - Norway Inn, Perranarworthal and walk to Royal Oak, Perranwell.
The venue was the pretty village of Perranwell and its pub the Royal Oak.
The pub features a plaque explaining how a messenger from Falmouth was in such a rush to report the victory of the Battle of Trafalgar to the Admiralty that he rode past the Royal Oak without stopping. We did not make that mistake.
Being COVID-responsible, we met in the marquee in the garden and fetched our beer from the bar.
We covered a range of topics and welcomed members taking on tasks and responsibilities to help us campaigning going forward. A pasty lunch halfway through was most welcome.
After the business we relaxed for while enjoying the Padstow Windjammer, Penzance Mild, St Ives Alba and Skinner's Lushingtons. Thanks Tim and Lizzie.
Cheers, Steve Barber
- Lockdown Heroes Presentation - the Victoria Inn, Victoria, Roche
Friday 10 June 2022
On Wednesday 8th June Cornwall CAMRA branch members assembled at St Austell station for the short bus journey to Roche to present the Victoria Inn with their ‘Lockdown Hero’ certificate.
We were warmly greeted at the pub by Manager Kelly Burgess and her team. Three ales were on offer: St Austell Tribute and Proper Job, together with Dartmoor brewery’s Jail Ale which is always a firm favourite with those that prefer a more malty beer. Numbers swelled as others arrived from the nearby railway station on the Par to Newquay branch line including members from Plymouth. We were also joined by Tina and Nigel from Roche itself for whom the Victoria Inn is their ‘local’ and are customers who had actually supported the pub during the various lockdowns by ordering food for home delivery.
Having purchased our ales, our new Chairman, Dugg Polman, presented Kelly with the certificate in recognition of the Victoria Inn’s initiative to deliver hot food to the local area. Of course, the electric car used for the delivery service received a mention too! The presentation was followed by a relaxed social event where members ordered food and sampled the ales in a very friendly and convivial atmosphere.
If Cornwall CAMRA is visiting your local please join us and say hello! Keep an eye on our website diary for all events.
Words, Jan Curtis
Photos, Steve Barber
- Cornwall CAMRA "West First Friday" social at the Trewellard Arms beer festival
Tuesday 7 June 2022
Our ‘West First Friday’ social on 3 June coincided with The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations and the long bank holiday weekend. Fortunately we were blessed with many pub based beer festivals to attend. However, the Trewellard Arms Beer Festival was chosen for our social to show our support for rural pubs in the far west of the county. The sun shone as a good number of CAMRA Cornwall branch members met up at Penzance bus station having travelled by both train and buses from various parts of the county. We made our way across the beautiful Penwith peninsula via St Just and Botallack to Trewellard on the Tin Coast.
Arriving at the Trewellard Arms the outside area of the pub looked delightful. Companion seats and colourful parasols had been placed in groups and six beers were available on stillage in the tent in addition to the four on hand pulls in the pub itself. We received a warm welcome from Martin and Gill as always.
The new St Austell beer called Anthem was one of the festival beers, along with Salcombe Seahorse and St Ives Hazy Meor. Beast of Bodmin by Firebrand brewery was also available outside. On handpump in the bar were Keltek Magik, Skinner's Lushingtons, Tintagel Merlin's Muddle and another new St Austell cask club beer Ros an Bucca, so there was a good variety of beer styles on offer.
During the afternoon we were joined by members of Exeter and East Devon Branch and several of us sampled food from the special menu chosen specifically for the beer festival. The Chilli Beef Nachos were delicious! Later in the afternoon, we caught the open top ‘Tin Coaster’ bus service back to Penzance. A fantastic finish to a lovely afternoon.
"Proper ansom" some would say!
Words, Jan Curtis
Photos, Steve Barber
- Cornwall Tasting Panel training meeting
Tuesday 7 June 2022
After several delays over two years caused by the COVID pandemic, the Cornwall Tasting Panel of CAMRA was able to carry out two stages of training in May for recruits and established tasting panel members, who are all volunteer CAMRA members.
The course took place at the Star at Crowlas which is renowned for the consistently high quality of its beer and range of beer styles on offer. Our thanks go to Pete Elvin the owner and Darren Norbury the barman.
The first stage of training consists of assessing the tasting abilities of the trainees and familiarising them with a range of flavours found in beer. The second stage trains them in the CAMRA system of beer styles, carrying out a tasting and recording tastings followed by profiling several beers from the bar and comparing the taste attributes found.
These tasters provide standardised, consistent and impartial tastings to nominate beers for CAMRA's Champion Beer of Britain competition and to provide tasting notes for beers in CAMRA's Good Beer Guide.
The preparation and training was carried out by me as Tasting Panel Chair. Here they are having a wonderful time!
Cheers, Steve Barber
- Lockdown Heroes Presentation - Caradon Inn, Upton Cross
Tuesday 7 June 2022
Cornwall CAMRA had intended to present a ‘Lockdown Heroes' certificate to licensees Alan and Sarah Collings of the Caradon Inn, Upton Cross, on 24 November but unfortunately the pub was temporarily closed due to the consequences of a flood in the kitchen.
So on 28th April 2022 a return trip took place with Chris Ham and Roger Webster presenting the certificate for going the extra mile during the COVID restrictions. The only village shop had closed a couple of years previously and the only alternatives were at least five miles distant so an extremely well stocked shop was built to the rear of the pub which was much appreciated and is well used by the local community.
Photos by Chris Ham.
Cheers, Steve Barber
- Lockdown Heroes Presentations - the White Hart, Chilsworthy, the Manor House, Rilla Mill and a social at the Cornish Ancestor, Callington and the Crows Nest Inn at Crows Nest
Tuesday 7 June 2022
On Wednesday 24 November 2021 a group of CAMRA Kernow members converged on Liskeard Station and travelled by two taxis, arranged by Roger Webster, our Social Secretary East, to the White Hart at Chilsworthy.
Our purpose was to present a ‘Lockdown Heroes' certificate to licensee Ian Durnall for the work done by Ian and his partner Amy Newland for opening a village shop in the pub and doing local food and drink deliveries to serve their local community throughout the COVID crisis.
On the bar, we had the choice of Uley Bitter, always on, Teignworthy Gun Dog and Salcombe Gold on handpump.
After a few pints, a few chats and a good view over the Tamar gorge below, we had to drag ourselves away to board the taxis to head to Callington town to find the new micro pub the Cornish Ancestor, opened in December 2020.
The Cornish Ancestor is a quiet, convivial pub serving varying four real ales by gravity dispense, and up to eight real ciders, also varying, depending on availability and demand. On our visit, there was Exmoor Ale, Pitchfork Hewish Gold (which was available last November but no longer apparently), Skinner's Pennycomequick and South Hams Pandemonium, the last of which I found very welcome on an autumn afternoon.
Then on through the narrow lanes to Rilla Mill in the Lynher valley.
At Rilla Mill is the 17C Manor House Inn with a strong focus on dining but also a welcoming pub for beer drinkers. There is a shop within the pub and Kim the landlady gave us a tour of the pub bar, dining areas and a meeting room for 40 people.
Our purpose at the Manor House Inn was to present a ‘Lockdown Heroes' certificate to licensees Kim and Joss for delivering meals to those shielding from COVID in the local area.
On the bar were Dartmoor Legend, Dartmoor, Jail Ale and Firebrand Patchwork Rocket on handpump.
Finally, we left the welcome of the Manor House to our last port of call as dusk fell, the Crows Nest Inn at Crow's Nest near Darite. This is the thirteenth highest pub in Cornwall at 620 feet AOD and lies in the shadow of Caradon Hill and its transmitter mast. The Crows Nest is a solid Cornish pub with a mining history and an unexpected handpump in the garden!
Inside it is very cosy and warm indeed with St Austell Hicks and three other beers on handpump. A fitting end to a wonderful day out.
And so back to Liskeard Station.
Cheers, Steve Barber
- Lockdown Heroes Presentations - Victoria Inn, Threemilestone and County Arms, Truro
Monday 6 June 2022
On Friday 5th November a small group of CAMRA Kernow members met at the Victoria Inn at Threemilestone to present the team there with a ‘Lockdown Heroes' certificate.
We assembled in the bar area of this busy pub which is popular with both locals and visitors for its food service and particularly its carvery. To begin with, Dev the Manager was out delivering food, the reason the certificate was being presented, but he soon returned having fulfilled his duty and he invited his Head Chef to join him to receive the certificate on behalf of the staff. Vince Curtis, our Chairman gave a short speech to recognise the service the pub had provided to locals during the lockdowns. Dev explained that the initiative had been so successful that the delivery service was now an integral part of the business. We enjoyed some real ales in a very convivial atmosphere both before and after the presentation.
Leaving the Victoria Inn we caught a bus along the road to Highertown, Truro. The County Arms, a large St Austell Brewery pub, was our next ‘port of call'. Here the pub accommodation had been let to NHS staff at RCH Treliske during lockdowns to assist the hospital and allow critical care staff somewhere to stay without the risk of further infection to families and house mates. Dan Marks the General Manager and his Head Chef received the certificate on behalf of the team at the County Arms. We enjoyed sampling the St Austell ales available; Proper Job was on particularly good form!
After the presentations, some members gathered in the Old Ale House in Truro. An early cask of Skinner’s Pennycomequick was available which for some members was ‘the icing on the cake' at the end of a very pleasant afternoon!
- Lockdown Heroes Presentations - the St John Inn, St John, the Bullers Arms, Landrake and a social at the Cockleshell and the Two Bridges, Saltash
Sunday 5 June 2022
On Saturday 9 October 2021 a group of CAMRA Kernow members travelled by coach, arranged by Roger Webster, our Social Secretary East, to the St John Inn. The pub is located in the picturesque village of the same name on an inlet of the River Tamar in the Forgotten Corner of Cornwall.
Our purpose was to present a ‘Lockdown Heroes' certificate to licensees Rob and Gill Berry for the accelerated development of a new build village shop in the pub car park. The shop takes form of an attractive wooden summerhouse. St John is fairly isolated with no other facilities. In Lockdown 3 they offered printing facilities for all to use, including a colour laser printer, a laptop (for designing), and a laminator.
On the bar, we had the choice of Bays Topsail, Marston's Draught Bass, Dartmoor Legend, Teignworthy Reel Ale plus Sandford Orchards Devon Scrumpy cider, all on handpump. But there are only four pumps you may say. If I remember rightly, we drank all the Legend (very nice it was) and Reel Ale came on. After a few pints and excellent buffet, we had to drag ourselves away to board the coach to Landrake.
The CAMRA Kernow coach party navigated its way out of the Forgotten Corner to the ancient village of Landrake, now fortunately bypassed by the busy A38. Our destination was the Bullers Arms which lies in the shadow of the towering St Michael's Church and was a former coaching inn on the main road.
Our purpose was to present a ‘Lockdown Heroes' certificate for making home deliveries of meals in the local Saltash/Landrake area to isolating people during lockdown.
On the bar, we had the choice of St Austell Tribute and Dartmoor Jail Ale plus Westons Old Rosie cider on handpump. We enjoyed our beers while wandering around the surprisingly extensive space in the pub.
Having delivered two 'Lockdown Hero" certificates, the CAMRA Kernow coach party finished the day in Saltash for a social at the Cockleshell and the Two Bridges.
The Cockleshell is a micro pub in the middle of the town centre which opened in a former shop in 2020 and stocks a changing range of cask beers from Cornish and Devonian breweries. The Summerskills Porter went down very well! It is a convivial pub without entertainment distractions and conversation is king.
The Two Bridges is an old pub right next to the railway station on a road running down the steep hill to the quayside. As the name suggests, there are excellent views of Brunel's 1859 Royal Albert railway bridge and the 1961 road bridge joining Cornwall to England. Our beer from the busy ground floor bar was carried up staircases to the pleasant garden behind and above the pub. I managed to avoid spilling much of my St Austell Tribute! Watching the trains crossing the bridge reminded us to make our way to the station and home after a long and enjoyable campaigning day.
Cheers, Steve Barber
- Lockdown Heroes Presentation - Norway Inn, Perranarworthal and walk to Royal Oak, Perranwell
Saturday 4 June 2022
On Friday 1st October the sun shone on a small group of branch members as they ventured out to present a ‘Lockdown Hero’ certificate. The certificate was presented to Steven Hawke and his team at the Norway Inn, Perranarworthal, in recognition of the delivery service the pub provided during the national lockdowns. The delivery service which was instigated shortly before the first lockdown has now become an established sector of the pub’s business. Hot meals and beverages are delivered to local residents providing a much needed link between the pub and the community. The Norway Inn is also focusing on the local community by sponsoring a local football team. Branch members enjoyed Tribute, Proper Job and Hicks served in a convivial environment by friendly and attentive staff.
After the presentation, the group made their way by footpath over the hill to the Royal Oak at Perranwell. En route we stopped to visit the 15th century St Piran’s Well. We admired the crystal clear water used for baptisms in St Piran’s Church further up the hill.
A warm welcome greeted us at the Royal Oak. Tim and his team tempted us with four real ales from Penzance Brewery including Ale Conner and West Coast Pale. After a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon many of the group walked via the ‘Millennium Path’ up the hill to Perranwell station on the Truro to Falmouth branch line to catch the train home.
- Cornwall CAMRA First "West First Friday" Social in St Ives
Friday 6 May 2022
Friday 6 May saw the initial West First Friday pub crawl arranged in the west of Cornwall Branch area by Jan Curtis who is the Social Secretary for this half of the county. Sixteen branch members, friends and members from Exeter and East Devon Branch descended on St Ives by train and bus. The weather was kind to us. Even the seagulls behaved themselves when we walked along bomb alley by the harbour.
Some of us went in the Hain Line (Wetherspoon) for a pint and brunch while most of us met up at the Golden Lion where I had a nice pint of Skinner's Betty Stogs (yes I know my glass says Atlantic).
Then along the narrow and bustling Fore Street to the Castle Inn for a pint of Skinner's Cornish Knocker this time.
Next was the Lifeboat Inn on Wharf Road facing the harbour, where some of our party had difficulty finding the entrance (it is not that obvious, being in a neighbouring building). A pint of St Austell Hicks was my reward for finding the way in.
Lastly, as it was past 4 o'clock opening time, a visit to the tiny Pilchard Press was called for. This is Cornwall’s first micro pub, which opened in 2016, slightly further along Wharf Road and genuinely difficult to find up a narrow alley. A range of beers was available directly from the cask. I enjoyed some Atlantic Sea Salt Stout.
Eventually trains and buses beckoned so we ran the gauntlet of the seagulls again to make our way home. Thanks to Jan for organising such a pleasant day out. Check the Branch Diary page for the next West First Friday social. Hint: they are usually on the first Friday of the month...
Cheers, Steve Barber
- Cornwall CAMRA 2022 AGM at St Austell Brewery
Saturday 2 April 2022
Cornwall Branch of CAMRA was grateful to St Austell Brewery for hosting our 2022 AGM on Saturday 2 April in their grand Visitor Centre, which was our first AGM since 2019 thanks to COVID pandemic restrictions. Members turned out from all over Cornwall and we welcomed our Regional Director for the South West Region, Pete Bridle.
After the AGM business, a hearty pasty lunch and the opportunity for members to raise branch business, we presented a certificate to the Brewery for achieving a finalist position in the 2020 CAMRA Champion Bottled Beer of Britain competition for their superb hoppy ale Proper Job.
Cheers, Steve Barber
- Driftwood Spars Beer Festival social
Tuesday 8 March 2022
There was a good turnout of CAMRA members from Cornwall and beyond for "The Light, The Dark, The Saison" Beer Festival at the Driftwood Spars at Trevaunance Cove near St Agnes on 4 March. The weather was good but most people resisted the temptation to run down to the sea but huddled around the festival bar to sample twelve special beers on the menu brewed by Driftwood and half a dozen other breweries. The styles ranged from zesty pale ales at 3.8% alcohol up to mind-blowing Imperial Stouts at 11%. There were milds, including Pete's Mild, a rare light mild in memory of our late friend and former brewer Pete Martin, saisons, fruity amber ale, IPA and a Burton Ale. As if that wasn't enough, there were further beers in the main bar. Excellent food was available from the Driftwood kitchen. Conversation and laughter ruled supreme and the only sad bit was staggering up the hill to get the bus home.
Cheers, Steve Barber
- CAMRA Kernow's Twixmas 2021
Thursday 30 December 2021
Thursday 30th December saw the return of Cornwall CAMRA’S annual Twixmas event. The meeting point this year was the Packet Station, the Wetherspoon pub in Falmouth. Here, Thornbridge ‘Jaipur’ was one of several ales available and it was lovely to see CAMRA membership leaflets prominently displayed just inside the door.
Our second venue was the traditional Seven Stars. Here, expecting the event to be well attended, we had reserved the recently refurbished upstairs ‘old bottle store’. It was a great space for us like-minded ale drinkers to get together and sample beers served on gravity. The atmosphere was very convivial and numbers swelled as more folk headed up the stairs to join the group. It was particularly good to welcome some members who we have not seen since pre-Covid times!
In smaller sub-groups we then made our way around the corner to Beerwolf Books. The ping-pong table was set up on the day and some members took the opportunity to enjoy a game or two! As is often the case in Beerwolf Books, a range of ales styles was available. Several members took the opportunity to sample Penzance Brewery ‘Scilly Stout’ which had been aged in a port barrel especially for the festive season!
For some members the next venue was the Oddfellows Arms. This back street pub with a good local following had been popular on our Falmouth Ale Trails event. Due to the compact size of this pub, we had pre-booked the back room with the landlady, Vicky. Here Treen’s Essential was one of the three ales available and members enjoyed good conversation around the pool table. It was nice to find out that we had been joined by members from Plymouth, Cardiff and Surrey/Hants Borders branches.
Our final venue was the ‘front bar on Custom House Quay Although under new management, this bar is being run very much as it always was with a great selection of ales available. For those of us that enjoy dark beers, we were lucky to find two stouts available! Dividing ourselves between tables we all managed to find seats and enjoy the well served ales in the friendly environment. With the ‘front being a short easy stroll to Falmouth Town station it was easy for members to make their way home on the Truro to Falmouth branch line. A good day was enjoyed by all.
- Mine week at The Pilchard Press, St. Ives
Monday 6 December 2021
The Pilchard Press in St Ives is this week showcasing beers from Cornwall's newest and probably smallest brewery. They are Mine Brewery from St Ives Casks of Best Bitter, Consols Bitter, Cousin Jack APA and IN Vein Stout should all be available at some point and maybe even some bottles of Imperiel Stout
- Exeter and East Devon CAMRA Festival of Winter Ales 2022
Sunday 31 October 2021
- Falmouth Beer Week - Town Trail
Saturday 23 October 2021
Saturday 23rd October saw the last of the organised trails of the Falmouth pub-based event. The trail was the ‘Town’ trail and the meeting point was Finn M’Couls. This large street corner pub was busy with both regulars and visitors and both cask ales available were on good form. Here Cornwall branch members were also joined by regular visitors from Surrey Hants Borders branch. We then meandered around the corner to the Games Room. Wanting to enjoy conversation and beer we found a spacious corner seating area and again both ales available were in good condition. From here it was a mere ‘skip and a hop’ to Beerwolf Books where several other branch members had already congregated. This GBG pub is always popular with both locals and visitors. The range of cask ales from out of county breweries and the attached bookshop providing added interest. The range of beers available on the day was good and included a coffee porter which was enjoyed by several members of the group. Moving through the main street we visited the Grapes. This pub was busy with a lunchtime food trade but we were still able to find a large table to sit together to enjoy conversation, the harbour views and the ales. Walking through Church Street we arrived at both the Cornish Bank and the King’s bars. At this point the group split, some to visit one or the other; some to visit both! In Kings one real was available and the group sat in the ‘snug area’ at the front of the pub. At the Cornish Bank we sat at the very back of this large former bank and enjoyed the harbour views. This recently opened venue often has live music in the evenings and is popular with a wide range of age groups. Will & Rufus who own the venue are keen to support local businesses and the ales available are often from Atlantic Brewery in Newquay.
- Falmouth Beer Week - Arwenack Trail
Wednesday 20 October 2021
Giving consideration to the old adage about cider and beer drinking, the Arwenack Trail began in the Stable bar on Wednesday 20th October. Several branch members met in the bottom bar and tasted from the wide range of both still and sparkling ciders which were available. Moving on to the Chainlocker it was lovely to see a large group of branch members and friends already gathered in this St Austell brewery pub. A head count at this time resulted in twenty two attendees! The group took over the traditional bar area of the pub and the staff were very enthusiastic to see everyone enjoying socialising in a pub environment after 18 months of social distancing and group size restrictions. A selection of 5 real ales were available including a small batch brew. Crossing Custom House Quay, we visited the ‘front. After being closed for about 12 months, this pub has reopened under new management and ownership, but everyone was pleased to see that the selection of real ales and appearance of the pub was very much the same as before the closure. Like we had done at the Chainlocker, we took over a large section of this cellar pub and enjoyed the beers in the very convivial atmosphere. Moving on in smaller groups, we visited the Cutty Sark, Five Degrees West and the Windjammer bar. Unfortunately the inclement weather which had been forecast had set in by this time and members decided sensibly that getting home safely must be their priority!
- Falmouth Beer Week - Terrace Trail
Saturday 16 October 2021
On Saturday 16th October a group of CAMRA Kernow branch members and friends met at the Quayside Inn to follow the ‘Terrace’ trail in reverse. The decision to do this trail in reverse for the organised tour was to avoid ascending the 111 steps of Jacob’s Ladder from The Moor so making the trail more accessible to all. After meeting in the Quayside and enjoying the excellent harbour views and in my case a very nice half pint of St Austell Tribute ale we ventured up the hill to the Oddfellows Arms. We had made a booking here due to the compact size of the pub. Ally behind the bar made us very welcome and at this point we were joined by other members keen to follow the remainder of the trail. Here we sampled Treen’s ‘Oddies Blend’, a blend of Treen’s Classic and Cloud Cuckoo, amongst others ales in a very convivial atmosphere. Following this we ascended ‘Lawn Steps’ to the Seaview Inn on Wodehouse Terrace. It was a lovely autumn day and the views from the front of this pub across the harbour were amazing. Michael, the landlord at this pub has recently become free of beer tie and we were greeted with the choice of Brisons Bitter and Potion No 9 both from Penzance Brewery, Jail Ale from Dartmoor and Treen’s Local. The pub had also opened an hour earlier that normal to accommodate our visit. Needless to say, we stayed here for a couple enjoying both the beer and the views from the bay window. With the climbing behind us, we walked to the Jacob’s Ladder Inn. Here we chose between Skinner’s Lushingtons or Sharp’s Sea Fury. All members reported to be fit and able to descend the 111 steps of Jacob’s Ladder (other more gentle routes can be followed) to The Moor. Here we visited the Pennycomequick. This St Austell Brewery pub, often has Tribute and Proper Job available with a St Austell ‘small batch’ as an added extra! From here we wandered along Killigrew Street to the Moth & the Moon. Matt and his team serve an ever changing selection of both cask and keg ales and the selection was good for our visit. From this point public transport is easily accessible for the journey home. An enjoyable afternoon was had by all.
- Falmouth Beer Week - Old High Street Trail
Wednesday 13 October 2021
Wednesday 13th October was the first organised event of the Falmouth Ale Trails. The chosen trail for this date was the ‘Old High Street’ trail and the first pub, the Packet Station, was the meeting point. A good number of branch members and some Plymouth branch members convened and beers were sampled and food ordered as suited individual members. Our promotional leaflets and membership forms were prominently displayed on a table just inside the door together with the forthcoming Wetherspoon Real Ale festival leaflets. Well done Aaron and ‘Team Packet’ for embracing our local venture.
We moved on to the Seven Stars and as it was a beautiful autumn day, we sat in the sun in the outdoor area to the front of the pub. Landlady Amy was on hand and was willing to show members the newly refurbished ‘Old Bottle Store’ of which many members were not aware as Covid restrictions had limited their travels. Treen’s ‘Local’ the ale brewed especially for the pub-based festival was one of the six ales available on gravity to sample.
We then crossed The Moor to the Palacio Lounge. This two storey building is very impressive and spacious, but the weather was so good that we chose to sit outside in the sunshine and under very blue skies. We could have been enjoying a beer in the Med! Skinner’s Porthleven was on offer at the time.
Moving around the corner we arrived at an already busy Prince of Wales. There was a good atmosphere in this traditional pub. We then walked up the hill to the Boathouse which had agreed to open an hour earlier than usual to accommodate our trail. Here we sat in a newly refurbished room with fantastic views across the river to Flushing and beyond. Four local ales were available on the bar to choose from and an enjoyable time was had by all. Finally we walked down to the Working Boat, the bar beneath the Greenbank Hotel. Three ales were available here including Driftwood Spars’ Spars. After a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon branch members made their way back into the centre of Falmouth to connect with public transport links home.
- The St. John Inn Oktoberfest & Apple festival returns on the 16th October 2021
Wednesday 29 September 2021
The St John Inn, tucked away in the quiet hamlet of St. John near Torpoint, Cornwall will once again be celebrating all things apple on Saturday 16th October, with its free Oktoberfest and Apple Festival. Rob and Gill Berry, owners of the village pub, are providing the opportunity for anyone to bring their own apples from their gardens and turn them into juice using a hydraulic apple crusher from Tavy Apples. People wishing to press their apples are reminded to bring their own containers to carry the apple juice home in! Gill said “ This year’s festival will be memory of Mike Holmes, who passed away last September, Mike was the “Mr Fix it” of St. John village and a regular patron of the pub. At the last apple festival, Mike worked tirelessly throughout on the apple press, helping to make what was a great community event for everyone. We would like donations in Mikes memory to go towards our chosen charity, the village church, which desperately needs new guttering and benches for the church yard”. Cider makers Adrian and Louise Snell, from Rame Rectory, will be returning to be on hand throughout the day offering professional advice and guidance on how to turn apple juice into drinkable cider! The event will also see the return of the hotly contested Apple Pie Competition. This year’s festival will also have an Oktoberfest theme, attendees are invited to enter into the fun spirit of the day by wearing lederhosen or Bavarian Dirndl dresses. Other apple-based events will be taking place throughout the day, with a cookery demonstration from Chef Steve Pugh. Steve is a professional chef with over 30 years’ experience catering in the Royal Navy and is a qualified chef instructor. His new venture Steve’s School of Cookery is due to open at the pub this autumn, offering intimate cookery lessons for up to 4 people at a time. Steve stated that “ I’m excited to be doing a cookery demonstration for people at the apple festival again. This year it will give people a further insight into what my new school has to offer.” No apple festival would be complete without a cider bar and rest assured as well as some great real ales, there will be a wide selection of ciders on offer from the marquee bar, accompanied by a hog roast throughout the afternoon. There will be live music throughout the afternoon from local bands Halfway Harmony, Spittin’ Feathers, and the Derry Airs, as well as traditional dancing from Wreckers Morris. In the evening, eight-piece band Rocksea, will take to the stage playing some great blues and rock. For anyone looking for an early Christmas present, there will be a selection of locally produced arts and craft stalls offering items ranging from wood carved reindeers to unique pieces of art and jewelry. The festival reflects the continued success of the pub, from being taken over in a derelict state 4 years ago, to regular inclusion in the CAMRA Good beer Guide. Gill and Rob have supported the local community since taking over the pub in a derelict state 4 years ago and have received recognition from central government for their efforts in providing a community shop at the pub during the recent pandemic, it now appears regularly in the CAMRA “Good Beer Guide.” Rob Berry, Landlord, said “This year to enable more people to come to the festival, we are providing a classic 1960’s bus running between Torpoint, Millbrook and the Rame Peninsula. It will be a free service, but we would like a donation to our charity from those who use it. Details of times and pick/drop off points will be published on our Facebook page nearer the time.”. The festival is free for everyone to attend and runs from Midday until late.
- Branch Social
Saturday 7 August 2021
Suggested meet from 12:30 There is an hourly bus service (No. 47) from both Truro and Redruth stations. See you there! Cheers!
- South West pub campaigners unite to show support as pubs reopen across the region
Thursday 13 May 2021
South West campaigners from CAMRA (the Campaign for Real Ale) and the Campaign for Pubs have joined forces to urge people to support their local pubs when they are able to open their indoor spaces to customers from 17 May. The Government confirmed on Monday 10 May that, as a part of the road map back to normal life, pubs can allow customers back inside to enjoy food and drink from next week – the limits of the rule of six or up to two households will apply indoors and groups of up to 30 outdoors. Commenting on the many challenges pubs have faced since the first lock down 14 months ago and since reopening outside areas, Cornwall CAMRA Branch Chair Vince Curtis said: “While there was much reporting of pub gardens being very busy when customers were allowed back into outdoor spaces from 12 April, this did not tell the whole story. Many pubs do not have large outdoor areas and it would have been unviable for them to reopen while this limiting option was in place. And, when the weather turned cold and wet, many customers stayed away from those pubs that did reopen. “This has added to the many challenges faced by pubs over the last 14 months. There is no doubt that the COVID pandemic has had a terrible effect on many people and businesses alike. The hospitality sector has been particularly badly hit. We hope that the public can enjoy the social and wellbeing benefits of being back inside the local – not just in its beer garden." Many publicans have built up substantial debts due to being forced to close and a lack of Government support. While there were loans available and the furlough scheme which were appreciated, these were far from sufficient to mitigate the loss of income coupled with the ongoing overheads for such a very long period. As the pandemic went through various phases, publicans were faced with draconian restrictions. Whilst this took place, many pubs nationally were shutting down permanently and staff were made redundant with jobs lost in the hospitality sector. The sad fact is that once a pub shuts very rarely can they open again. Alastair Kerr from the Campaign for Pubs said: “The hospitality sector and in particular, pubs, have had their worst trading year on record and with the continued trading restrictions forced upon pubs, they will and are struggling to survive. Pubs are a corner stone of our society, a bed rock of our communities and a staple of our culture and we should all pull together to ensure that pubs survive and thrive during and after this pandemic. Pubs have faced the brunt of the restrictions that have been enforced by this Government, often with no evidence to back them up, and now more than ever they need all the support they can get. The Campaign for Pubs continues to promote, support and fight for pubs, publicans and their customers all over the UK.” Vince Curtis continued: “Pubs are vital for community cohesion in many areas. We have seen thousands close in recent years and many of these, although viable as pub businesses, have been converted to other use depriving locals of a place to meet and socialise. We hope that communities will take advantage of now being able to safely enjoy a pubs offering be it indoors or in a pub garden. It’s a cliché but it is the reality with pubs like never before - use it or lose it. “What this pandemic has proved is how much the hospitality industry gives back to the government financially and how pubs play such an important part in our way of life. From quiet pubs, pubs with music, pubs where you can play a sport or watch sport, pubs where you can dine and much more. “Now pubs are able to open up more, we need to focus on how to save our locals. The public can play its part in saving this great British institution by using them. Pubs are the hub of the community.”
Louise Treseder, landlady of the Driftwood Spars in St Agnes, Cornwall (01872 552428) commented, “The worst bit of the last 15 months for me was when we were first closed and the weeks leading up to this, the uncertainty of how the staff were going to be paid was terrible, but once Furlough was announced and I secured a CIBLS loan I felt the business could survive for a while. When we were reopening the VAT reduction & the business rates holiday added to the relief that we could have a business to come back to. The constant closing and reopening was hard, we never knew how much to order and worried about wastage which we could ill afford under the circumstances. We are fortunate that we are in a coastal location and have lots of space we can use, if we were in a city recovery would have been more challenging and stressful. We are very glad to be reopening inside again as this gives me & the staff certainty that we can be open every day, at the moment it is so weather dependant. Being on the North coast of Cornwall and exposed to the Atlantic a marquee or structure wasn't really an option as it would easily get damaged - it would a have been a wasted investment. It will be strange having customers in the B & B again and I'm worried I've forgotten something, but I'll soon work it out when we get open. It's been challenging for the brewery, but we managed to adapt well, we put our cask beer into minikegs to sell to customers of the pub, but we still have to dispose of almost 50 casks of beer and then the lead in time to reopening wasn't quite long enough so we spent most of last summer trying to catch up with beer production.”
Amy Newland, landlady of the White Hart in Chilsworthy, Cornwall (01822 833876) added, “We’ve always been here for the community and it was the strangest feeling: as soon as the door closed you lost the soul of the pub. It was cold and empty. We live upstairs and it was upsetting to be there; our lives changed overnight. One night we’re buzzing with lovely customers having a great time, the next night it’s just an empty old building. It was like being in a ghost town. At the very beginning and throughout the first lockdown, we sometimes thought of giving up. It was so hard. People said: ‘It must be amazing, lockdown in a pub!’ But it was the loneliest place you could be!”
Step 3 – from 17 May Following the move to Step 3, you will be able to reopen indoor areas of your venues. You will be able to serve customers in groups of up to 6 or 2 households indoors, or in groups of up to 30 outdoors. If your venue serves alcohol, table service will be required. Even if no alcohol is ordered, this means customers must order, be served and eat/drink while seated. If your venue does not serve alcohol, customers can order and collect food and drink from a counter. But they must consume food and drink while seated at a table. Indoor entertainment is allowed, including soft play areas. This guidance will be kept up to date as we move through the steps of the roadmap. These are the FAQs from UKH/BBPA/BII - https://www.ukhospitality.org.uk/page/FAQs
- Lockdown Heroes 2020/2021
Thursday 11 March 2021
In 2020 we proudly announced the recipient of our first “Lockdown Heroes” award. It went to the White Hart at Chilsworthy for their superb effort to serve their local community throughout the covid crisis. They opened a village shop in their pub and made local deliveries of food and drink.
We are now able to announce a further 10 recipients, all who have gone the extra mile to serve their communities, or even support a more national effort, in getting us all through the gloom that is “lockdown”.
The pubs receiving these awards are:
The Buller’s Arms, Landrake, for making home deliveries of meals in the local Saltash/Landrake area.
The Norway Inn, Perranworthal, for making home-deliveries of meals and drink to the local area; available all day, every day.
The Manor House Inn, Rilla Mill, for delivering meals to those shielding in the local area.
The Victoria Inn, Roche, for making home deliveries of meals and drink to the local and surrounding area.
The St. John Inn, St. John Inn. Because of the first lockdown in March 2020 they accelerated development of a new build village shop in the pub car park. St John is fairly isolated with no other facilities. Now in lockdown 3 they are also offering printing facilities for all to use, including a colour laser printer, a laptop (for designing), and a laminator.
The Victoria Inn, Threemilestone, for making home-deliveries of meals and drink to the local area and also to local businesses for staff lunches. Donations of cases of drinks were made to key workers, care homes etc.
The County Arms, Truro, for offering free rooms to NHS workers at nearby Treliske Hospital.
The Caradon Inn. Upton Cross, for opening a substantial village shop in the pub to serve the locals in a remote location with few other facilities ("shop@the inn").
Ask any visitor to these shores “What is special and unique about Britain?” and they will probably answer “Pubs”. Well these 11 hostelries have taken “special” to a new level. CAMRA urges you all to visit your local pub as soon as it is permissible and safe to do so. If you can please visit one of these eleven who have done so much to support their communities. They deserve our support and we salute them.
- Falmouth Beer Festival 2021
Thursday 4 March 2021
Following the COVID related cancellation of the 2020 event we have further disappointing but not unexpected news. It has been decided that we are not in a position to run a Falmouth Beer Festival this year.
Last Year our Festival Organiser Sonia Bunce, and our Branch Chairperson Bob Bunce resigned from their committee positions. This followed their stewardship of transforming the Falmouth Beer Festival from the Princess Pavilion location to Events Square where it developed into a hugely successful celebration of beer and cider. We owe them a huge thankyou!
Replacing Sonia and Bob would have been a huge task in normal times but the ongoing pandemic has meant we have been unable to hold an AGM and therefore are unable to fill the position of Festival Organiser. With the general uncertainty that still exists, coupled with the fact that by the time restrictions are lifted fully (June 21st is the earliest date this is expected), there would be insufficient time remaining to organise such a mega event.
On a positive note, and in support of #PUBSMATTER we are looking to organise a pubs-based festival in Falmouth and are in the early stages of planning this. Subject to confirmation we hope to have a fortnight long event (week commencing October 11th) involving a series of crawls around 24 Falmouth pubs. Even we couldn’t do all 24 in one go so it will split into 4 crawls each involving 6 pubs. Participants will get to vote for their champion beer and cider of the event. We hope to see you there!
- Our first “Lockdown Hero” is awarded
Tuesday 22 December 2020
At Cornwall CAMRA we have decided to give recognition to Pubs, Licensees and their staff who have gone the extra mile to serve their communities through the various restrictions that have been imposed during the COVID19 pandemic. We do not just recognise those who have continued to provide delicious real ale but also those who have helped their localities with much, much more. The pub is, after all the beating heart of many towns and villages, acting as a social hub and being a vital part in the wellbeing of all who use them.
Our first award of “Lockdown Hero” is made to the White Hart at Chilsworthy in East Cornwall. Amy and Ian Durnall only took on the pub in September 2017 and already it has just become CAMRA Cornwall Pub of the Year for the second year running.
As recently seen by many on the BBC TV show Tom Kerridge – Saving Britain’s Pubs, Amy and Ian had invested in building alterations and opened a pub shop (the only one in the village) just before lockdown hit.
Ian has always worked full time as a gas engineer and to help play her part Amy was tempted to return to work for the NHS but decided the role she and the pub could play serving the local community would be at least as important. Throughout lockdown they provided take away and deliveries of meals and beer to local residents as well as expanding the range of goods in the shop. This also meant that they could continue to employ their staff and give their chef an apprenticeship.
So raise a glass to all at the White Hart as they become Cornwall CAMRA’s first Lockdown Hero……And watch this space as there will be more “heroes” coming soon.
- Clint O'Connor pays tribute to Roger Ryman
Sunday 31 May 2020
Cornwall CAMRA is very sad to have heard that Roger Ryman, Brewing Director, St Austell Brewery, passed away last week, at the age of 52, after a brave battle with cancer.
When Roger was appointed Head Brewer in 1999, St Austell Brewery was a moribund local brewery, producing mediocre beers, and reliant on its near monopoly of pubs in Cornwall.
However, newly appointed Chairman and CEO James Staughton knew that the brewery had to expand and diversify if wasn’t to gradually fade into obscurity.
Step 1, appoint a new Head Brewer. At the interview, the young Roger, from Maclay and Co in Alloa, Scotland impressed James with his enthusiasm and integrity, being honest enough to say he didn’t think much of Tinners, St Austell’s flagship beer!
To quote James Staughton, “The job of Head Brewer was already effectively his, right there and then - we need not have seen anyone else. He was the breath of fresh air our brewery so desperately needed at the time.”
Roger’s first new brew was “DAYLIGHT ROBBERY” brewed to celebrate the total eclipse of the Sun, visible from Cornwall that year (1999). Originally intended as a seasonal brew, it was immediately so successful, that it continued to be brewed, until eventually it was renamed “TRIBUTE”, and became St Austell’s flagship ale.
There then followed a string of successful ales, including PROPER JOB, TRELAWNEY, KOREV CORNISH LAGER, MENA DHU, ADMIRALS ALE (very, very sadly no longer brewed) and CORNISH BEST, creating an entirely new portfolio for St Austell brewery. These beers took the brewery from strength to strength, and St Austell became a major national brewery.
Roger travelled the country and the world to work with and learn from other brewers, bringing back hops, malts and recipes from all over.
At the brewery he created a unique team of young brewers dedicated to brewing ales of the highest quality.
In many ways the quality he created was his most important, but mainly unsung achievement, no longer “St Awful”, a bad pint of St Austell in a pub is now very rare event indeed.
Roger persuaded the brewery to invest in new plant to improve quality and capacity, and also to build a new Small Batch Plant, with a capacity of 10 brewer’s barrels. This gave his team of brewers the opportunity to experiment, and to create new beers. From the Small Batch Plant came the “Small Batch Club”, thirty outlets, both free and tied trade who would each take and sell a firkin (9 gallons) of the beers produced. This enabled the drinking public to share the tastes and delights of new and very different ales from the brewery on a regular basis.
Roger was a very good friend to CAMRA, supporting our festivals and events, with ales and through his colleagues, with financial help. He was always ready to help, advise and support other small brewers in Cornwall.
No tribute to Roger would be complete without mentioning the “Celtic Beer Festival”, held at the brewery in November each year. The first was held in 1999, after Roger had been at the brewery for just six months, providing a showcase not just for St Austell beers, but for beers from all Celtic regions, including, of course, many local beers. Last year’s festival was the 21st, but of course, with Corona Virus, we do not know if it will be held this year. This festival has achieved an outstanding reputation throughout the nation as one of the best beer festivals in the country, (to me it is the best, but then, I am biased.)
Finally on behalf of Cornwall CAMRA can I pass on to Toni, his wife, his family, and to all his friends and colleagues in the brewing industry our most sincere condolences.
- Roger Ryman
Saturday 30 May 2020
It is with enormous regret that we announce the untimely death of St.Austell Brewing Director Roger Ryman. There is a fitting obituary on the St.Austell Brewery web site.
- Thursday 7 May 2020
- Falmouth Beer Festival 2020
Sunday 19 April 2020
We regret to announce that the CAMRA Falmouth Beer Festival for 2020 is cancelled. We hope to hold an event in 2021
- LOSTWITHIEL BEER FESTIVAL
Friday 13 March 2020
Lostwithiel Community Centre
Fri. 13th. March 7-11pm. Local Real Ale - Craft Gin & Vodka, with music from The Kenny Barnes’ Gang
Sat. 14th.March 11.00am-10.00pm. Local Real Ale with live Six Nations Rugby
- The Forgotten Corner of Cornwall Pub Tour
Friday 6 March 2020
Leap year Saturday the 29 February was the occasion of a grand pub tour in the Forgotten Corner of Cornwall for 33 CAMRA members. Most of us arrived at St Germans station, much to the surprise of the train manager who had never seen so many people get off at this quiet station in the winter.
Our coach took us the short hop to our first pub, the newly reopened Halfway House at Polbathic. We were welcomed by Lloyd the landlord, who had Bath Ales Prophecy, South Hams Eddystone and Dartmoor Dragon’s Breath on handpump plus a local cider on gravity. We indulged in a pleasant pint or two in this comfortable pub at the gateway to the peninsula.
Tearing ourselves away for our next pub, we headed east to Wilcove. The Wilcove Inn overlooks the Royal Naval Dockyard on the English side of the Tamar a mile and a half away across the Hamoaze reach of the River Tamar.
This pub is owned by the Antony Estate and was closed for six months in 2019, refurbished and re-opened in July with Gemma as licensee. The Wilcove also had Prophecy plus St Austell Tribute and Draught Bass on handpump. The Bass was a whoopsie but quickly replaced by Exeter Ferryman in excellent condition.
Again the timetable called, but we nearly didn’t make it beyond Wilcove as the coach couldn’t get up the hill! Lucky it was low tide so we could back up. On the third run up, we surmounted the hill and headed south west to the historic little port of St John.
The village is situated at the head of St John's Lake, a large inlet of the Hamoaze. It centres around the medieval church which can be traced back through 1490, 1150 to an original Norman church of 1080. The St John Inn is a lovely village pub run by Rob and Gill and carries the emblem of the Cross of St John, which refers to the Order of St John which is an Order of Chivalry of the Crown and first came into being around 1080 when a hospital was established in Jerusalem by Benedictine monks to provide care for pilgrims, hence the then Knights Hospitallers and, yes, right down to today’s St John Ambulance. The pub cares for pilgrims of a different sort, who usually arrive by coach or car! Libations on offer were Draught Bass, Cornish Crown Porter and Black Sheep Ram Tackle. We also enjoyed a good value lunch. The various rooms of this cosy stone pub are adorned with pewter plate, military artefacts, horse brasses and many pictures. I even spotted a Devil Among The Tailors. There was a request about giving a mention to someone keeping a list of the top 100 pubs serving Bass.
Eventually, we had to make a move westwards towards Crafthole. The coach managed the hill out this time! The Little Fox Hotel, Crafthole, is a charming 14th Century hotel, formerly the Liscawn Inn, which lies back from the road and is set in over 3 hectares of grounds with fine views of Dartmoor. Steve had handpumped Wadworth Dirty Rucker and Skinner’s Betty Stogs or was it Splendid Tackle for us, at only £2.50 per pint.
After a pleasant hour in the Aspects Bar, we left the residents to their peace and quiet, as we made our way to the last pub of the trip. We were faced by another hill to get out of the Little Fox so some of us bravely volunteered to walk up the driveway which allowed the coach to successfully reach the road and take us the half mile to the Finnygook Inn in the village centre of Crafthole.
The large 15th Century Finnygook Inn gets its name from the ghost, or gook, of a famous local smuggler, Finney. Some stories claim that he wore a woman’s gook bonnet in public to hide his face. These days, he would be rather obvious as shown on the pub sign whatever he wore.
A few years ago, the Finnygook suffered a disastrous fire but has been luxuriously repaired in a modern style and is open as a restaurant, hotel and bar. Landlady Errica provided us with Bath Prophecy and Fuller’s London Pride to sup in comfort while watching the rain showers outside.
At the end of an enjoyable day we returned to the station for our trains home. Thanks to Cornwall Branch Public Transport Officer and Social Secretary (East), Roger Webster, for organising such a grand day out.
And finally..........A selection of other pictures from the day
- South West Regional Meeting in Swindon
Saturday 15 February 2020
Venue The Kings, 20 Wood Street, Swindon SN1 4AB. Starts at 1230
The meeting is in the main function room on the first floor, but please buy your drinks from the main bar downstairs. Directions Wood Street is in Old Town, Swindon; about 25 minutes walk from Swindon Railway Station.
There are regular bus services from Fleming Way, about 5 minutes walk from the Railway Station, up the hill to Old Town.
From the Railway Station follow the signs for ‘Town Centre’ until you reach a pedestrian underpass leading to the shops.
Fleming Way is above the underpass and has numerous bus stands. Those going up to Old Town include:-
• Swindon Bus Company 11 • Swindon Bus Company 12 • Swindon Bus Company 22 • Swindon Bus Company 25
Alternatively if you arriving by bus into Swindon, or go to the Bus station, use the following buses:- • Stagecoach 9 • Stagecoach 49
The bus stop you want in Old Town is ‘Prospect Place’ the opposite side of the road to the main post office. From the stop walk towards the roundabout ahead of the bus and then turn left into Wood Street. The Kings is on the left half way down Wood Street. Buffet (£7.50 per head)
The Kings will be supplying a buffet for anyone who would like to eat there.
The buffet will consist of:- • BBQ Chicken Wings • Sweet Cherry Cream Cheese Peppers • Mini Duck & Hoisin Spring Rolls • Sausages Glazed with Honey & Mustard • Selection of Vegetarian Quiches • Selection of Freshly Made Sandwiches
The cost per head is £7.50 each and should be booked in advance with ku.gro.armac.nodniws@tcatnoc by Monday 10th February. We will collect payment on the day.
- Exciting voluntary role of Regional Secretary is available
Thursday 30 January 2020
See link in interested for more info
Tuesday 28 January 2020
- Tuesday 28 January 2020
- CK Burns Night Saturday 25 January 2020
- Exeter Winter Ales Festival
Friday 17 January 2020
If you wish to volunteer Download staffing form here
- 2019 Falmouth "Twixtmas" walkabout
Monday 6 January 2020
The last Saturday of 2019 saw the annual walkabout around Falmouth’s pubs as well attended as always. Apart from Cornwall members we were joined by folk from Cardiff, Worthing, South Devon and Hampshire. What was particularly pleasing was there were new faces joining us. As has become traditional we assembled at the Seven Stars on the Moor and enjoyed some excellent beer in this very traditional, unspoilt hostelry.
Some of us made our way up to the Boathouse, more fine real ale awaited accompanied by some stunning views over Carrick Roads.
Back down the High Street and our next visit was the Hand Bar, which sadly by the time you read this has closed its doors for the final time, a sad loss to the town.
Other members of the group had in the meantime also visited Pennycomequick which didn’t disappoint.
Most of the group then reconvened at Beerwolf Books.
I am not sure if the beer had started to kick in but judging by the picture it had ( or Beerwolf Books had started to tilt!). From here it was a short drop down to the Oddfellows Arms, a traditional pub that knows how to look after ale.
Our final destination was the ‘front where the group reassembled and enjoyed some wonderful beer overlooking Custom House Quay. All too soon it was time for people to start heading for home, hopefully everybody enjoyed themselves and we look forward to repeating the experience next year.
- "Blue Skies" in St.Ives
Tuesday 17 December 2019
On December 17th 2019 about 30 Camra Kernow members met at St.Ives Brewery for a "Blue Sky" session to discuss and identify what we thought was the important stuff to focus on in 2020. But mostly it was about beer and frivolity. It also gaves us a chance to present Marco with his silver award (golden ales) for XPA form the Falmouth Beer Festival
Watch this space for news of the "blue sky"results!!!
- "Blue Sky" brainstorming results
Saturday 7 December 2019
On Saturday 7th December the Branch was invited to St Ives Brewery to vote on the activities they hold close to their campaigning heart; some are prescribed by CAMRA HQ as mandatory, but this was a blue-sky meeting. Blue sky, a place where rules do not exist and the top 20 is solely down to voting members ideals. Following a lively review of the Activities below 30 active members cast their votes, selecting up to 20 activities out of the 39 listed. The idea is that these votes will be taken on board and help focus the committee for their aims going forward.
The results make interesting reading with a strong view on localism shining through with activities in the county being central with visits to local pubs and breweries ranking highly alongside the quarterly branch Magazine. Engaging possible new members through Social media, young members and through the Royal Cornwall Show scored surprisingly low. A turnout of 30 members verses the ~1,400 CAMRA Kernow members does make the scoring subjective to the view of only 2% of the membership.
Without acceptation attendees at the meeting aired the same concern “Mobilising the CAMRA Kernow membership to become active is the fundamental Branch challenge.
Too often the organising and managing the activities is taken by so few in voluntary organisations”
The Blue-Sky Results
Local communication tools - One & Ale our Branch Magazine and the Branch Website Local Engagement Activities & Days Out - Branch Trips & Festivals Acknowledging top Pubs – Through Whatpub & Pub of The Year awards Branch Branding – Clothing representing local CAMRA membership Mandatory Fundamentals – Financial and Membership management
Acknowledging Pubs – Good Beer & local Guides Brewery Promotion – Tasting notes, Promoting producers, Awards, BLOs & CBOB Mandatory meetings – Branch & Committee meets Cider Promotion - Promoting producers, Awards,
Protecting Pubs – Monitoring pubs Opening & Closing, ACVs Mandatory meetings – Committee meets Acknowledging top Pubs – Cider Pubs & Clubs
Sunday 1 December 2019
- Larking about on the Lizard
Saturday 2 November 2019
A group of hardy individuals boarded the coach at Camborne Railway Station in early November and headed out on to the windy Lizard peninsula. Our first port of call was Mounts Bay Inn, Mullion, the venue for our latest branch meeting where we were greeted by our hosts Peter and Cheryl who very graciously supplied the first drink on the house which was hugely appreciated. After a very positive meeting and fortified by a splendid buffet, we moved onto the Halzephron Inn at Gunwalloe, an old smugglers inn overlooking the sea and reputed to have a tunnel behind the fireplace where we received a warm welcome and found some well kept ale and cider.
From here it was onto Helston and the famous Blue Anchor, home of Spingo Ales, this historic pub is well worth a visit and good range of ales ensured all tastes were catered for.
Chairman Bob presented a Falmouth Beer Festival award to owner Simon Stone for Spingo Special, Tom from Keltek Brewery was also present and received awards for Pilot Gig Porter and Golden Lance. Congratulations to both breweries.
Porthleven was our next destination and the Ship Inn which is situated right on the harbour, the group split themselves between the bar and the adjoining Smithy and sampled some more well kept beer.
Sadly, the day was coming to an end and we boarded the coach for the trip back to Camborne, although some of us did delay the train journey home and popped into the John Francis Basset for a nightcap!
- Haywood's Apple Picking Adventures
Saturday 19 October 2019
CAMRA Kernow members were joined by Regional Leaders to Go picking....
SUPPORTING APPLES in OCTOBER THE CAMRA MONTH OF CIDER
Haywood Farm is located in the beautiful Allen Valley, near the village of St. Mabyn, approximately 4 miles from Wadebridge. The Bray family have farmed here since 1919, but cider has been produced on the farm’s granite cider press for centuries, supplying the families and labourers with the Westcountry’s favourite drink.
Tom Bray started making cider with a group of friends in 2003, and since then his enthusiasm, passion and expertise have continued to grow. Over the last five years, he has propagated and planted fourteen acres of orchards, carefully selecting varieties for their quality and suitability to the Cornish climate, all helping to create top-quality cider.
After a Short Journey from Bodmin, the intrepid group of Apple lovers match towards the trees.....and my god was there a lot of trees and a bountiful abundance of apples.
The team set about pick apples from the rows of trees. This is a real community events with locals turning up throughout the day, bring their kids and dogs who all mucked in. The aim to support Tom and the Haywood's team, meet new people and have bit of fun throughout the day.
After a couple of hours and a trailer load of apples picked...we stopped for Cheese and of course refreshments......in the form of Apple juice and of course Tom's fantastic medium cider...
Back on to the trees, as we load up the tractors buck with more than just apples...!
Finally were back on the family table for a fill of pork rolls, with of course beautiful apple source, all swilled back by a glug of cider...
I feel especially proud of the volunteers who all supported the efforts, a few aches and pains would have been woken up with in the morning, some knees and back were waning towards the end of the day....But everyone as team gained a massive sense of achievement as we all pushed through together to complete the rows of trees..... A round of applause to all involve and many thanks Tom and the team for hosting us for the day....Lets get booked in for next year....
Pick up some of this fantastic cider served both Traditional Still and Sparkling available across Cornwall for details see www.haywoodfarmcider.co.uk
- Falmouth Beer Festival 2019
Saturday 5 October 2019
The Fantastic Falmouth Beer Festival 2019 Volunteers
Creating the Festival.....
Judging the Champion Beers & Ciders of Cornwall 2019
The Winners are......
SUPREME CHAMPION BEER of CORNWALL 2019
GOLD Harbour Brewery - Ellensburg Session IPA
SILVER Tintagel Brewery - Merlin’s Muddle
BRONZE Skinner's Brewery - Hops & Honey
CHAMPION CIDERS of FALMOUTH BEER FESTIVAL 2019
GOLD Venton’s Devon Cyder Thirst Responder
SILVER Perry's Cider Vintage
BRONZE Sandford Orchards Creely Vintage
CHAMPION CIDER of CORNWALL 2019
GOLD Cornish Cyder - Pure Drop
SILVER Riverside Cottage - Cider
Champion Cornish Speciality Ale 2019
GOLD Skinner's Brewery - Hops & Honey
SILVER Sharp's Brewery - Sunset Red
BRONZE Woodman's Wild Ale - Wild Mild
Champion Cornish Porter 2019
GOLD Keltek Brewery - Pilot Gig Porter
SILVER Padstow Brewing Company - Pilot
BRONZE Driftwood Spars Brewery - Bolsters Blood
Champion Cornish Strong Mild and Old Ale 2019
GOLD Driftwood Spars Brewery - Alfie's Revenge
SILVER Tremethick Brewery - Dark Ale
BRONZE Blue Anchor Inn - Spingo Special
Champion Cornish Stout 2019
GOLD Dynamite Valley Brewing Co. - Black Charge
SILVER St Austell Brewery - Moo Juice
BRONZE Castle Brewery - Stoggy Stout
Champion Cornish Bitter 2019
GOLD Dynamite Valley Brewing Co. - Gold Rush
SILVER Treen's Brewery - Essential
BRONZE Keltek Brewery - Lance
Champion Cornish Strong Bitter 2019
GOLD Tintagel Brewery - Merlin’s Muddle
SILVER Harbour Brewing Company - IPA
BRONZE St Austell Brewery - Hicks
Champion Cornish Best Bitters 2019
GOLD Driftwood Spars - Forest Blond
SILVER Treen's Brewery - Classic
BRONZE Forge Brewery - Tamar Source
Champion Cornish Golden Ale 2019
GOLD Harbour Brewery - Ellensburg Session IPA
SILVER St Ives Brewery - XPA
BRONZE Firebrand Brewing Co - West Coast IPA
The 6 Tutored Tasting's went down a storm......
Some pictures through the festival...Much love to all the festival goers
- Weird, Wondrous & Historic Pubs of the United Kingdom
Wednesday 2 October 2019
My name is Mikey and I live in Filey in North Yorkshire. I just wanted to message you to say that I've very recently finished writing a book and it has now been published on Amazon in both Paperback and Kindle format. The book is called Weird, Wondrous & Historic Pubs of the United Kingdom and it has taken me around 10 years to write. I have visited all of the pubs inside and it covers numerous counties in England, and also covers Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. I have a great foreword at the beginning of the book written by one of the co-founders of Wold Top Brewery in East Yorkshire and Spirit of Yorkshire Distillery in North Yorkshire. As this is my first ever book, I am wanting to spread the word to every part of the UK to get it out there. The Facebook fan page is for anyone to join and on it I will be keeping people updated by posting interesting facts and photos of the pubs I have visited in the book. The Amazon links and to the Facebook page are below:
Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/weirdwondrousandhistoricpubs/
Feel free to share the above
Kindest regards, Mikey