The new issue of Ale & Hearty, the Southport and District CAMRA magazine, has just arrived from the printers. It's my first as editor, so I hope it's all right. I picked up my copy last night at the Branch committee meeting at the Dog and Gun in Aughton. The main article reports on the campaign to save the Becconsall in Hesketh Bank, to which I have referred to in several previous postings. The beer blogger Tandleman, who in another guise is deputy organiser of the National Winter Ales Festival, has also written a characteristically punchy article. Ale and Hearty is available now free of charge in all good local pubs.
After the meeting, Mike who runs the pub had a chat with us about the possibility of his running a small beer festival next Spring. He would be limited to the Marston's range of guests, but as he's considering about 20 beers in a marquee, that would still give some scope for a reasonable choice. We chatted about cooling systems we'd used at our own beer festivals and serving beers by gravity to avoid the problems of trying to locate and borrow scores of handpumps, something he hadn't considered before. It's still only in the planning stage, but sounds an interesting venture.
The Dog and Gun had 5 real ales on, including Marstons Pedigree and Fever Pitch and a real mild. There is no keg or smoothflow ales in this pub at all, apart from the inevitable Guinness, although the mild sales are slipping and Mike fears he might have to remove it. It's a nice pub, well worth a visit, and is in Long Lane, about 8 minutes' walk from Aughton Park railway station.