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Autumn Newsletter 2023

The next FoHB social will be held at  AJ’s Brewery Tap in Long Acre St. Walsall, on Monday 9th October, starting at 7.30pm (entry from the car-park round the back). The social meeting in November will be at St Matthews Hall, Walsall.

On Saturday 29th July the Friends took a coach trip to Halifax to see the Cloth Hall, and have a pub crawl of the once prosperous wool town. The coach was full and we made £97 on the raffle, and the weather stayed kind as we sampled the local beers starting at the ‘Tree Pigeons’, a fine art-deco pub with many original features intact. Due to time restrictions some of us took a taxi to the next pub, ‘Big Six’, to find a pub in a terrace of houses with a passageway right through to the next street at the back, where the beer garden waited over the road. Unusual layout ( probably unique) or not we had to get back on track to the pub crawl so it was taxi time again, this time to the Victorian Craft Beer Café which was just like it sounds. A short walk up the ‘Upper George’ offered us real ales aplenty, then on to the ‘Grayston Unity’ which was described as a “quirky little bar”, and then over to the ‘Dukes’ for more minimalistic décor but the cask offering was very good.  A quick walk of about 2 blocks and we were at Westgate Arcade where the ultra-modern ‘Kobenhaven’ lay waiting, but with the pickup time fast approaching we had no time to sing “Wonderful Wonderful Copenhagen” so pressed on to the nearest pub to the pickup place, the ‘Meandering Bear’ (long story about an escaped bear years ago) which of course was packed with FoHB members. Many thought that the time we had was insufficient to do all the pubs we wanted to, but that said, we can always go back another time.

The next FoHB trip will be to Liverpool on Saturday 28th October, £16 a head for Premier Coach there and back. Those interested contact me or Dan.

Merchandise: We have recently come into possession of some old Highgate Dark Ale badges from when the brewery was promoting the Mild as ‘Dark Ale’. Only a few left £3 each or 2 for a Fiver.

Crisps Maltings sold: Canada’s largest grain wholesaler Richardson has bought Crisp Maltings for an undisclosed sum. Crisp has 5 UK plants, at Great Ryborough in Norfolk (the largest), Ditchingham in Suffolk, Mistley in Essex with Portgordon and Alloa in Scotland. With their recent acquisitions in Poland  and Germany they now have a total capability of 440,000 tons.

Carlsberg sold London Fields: C-M has confirmed the sale of London Fields to the Grace Land Group which owns half a dozen pubs in North London. Details of the sale have not been disclosed. Grace Land plans to launch its Saint Monday brand from the site. London Fields started in 2011 but got into difficulties in 2016 and was bought by Carlsberg a year later, running it as a joint venture with New York’s Brooklyn Brewery.

Carlsberg to sell Ringwood:  Carlsberg Marstons has put its Ringwood operation up for sale, along with the Razorback, Old Thumper, Boondoggle and Fortyniner brands. Development of the site was said to be difficult as it’s in a residential area. The brewery was founded in 1978 by Pater Austin and moved to its current site in

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