Friday, 22 October 2010

LocAle - what is it?

LocAle is a CAMRA accreditation scheme to promote pubs that sell locally brewed real ale. At the CAMRA AGM in 2008 in Cardiff, the scheme was launched nationally at a seminar (or 'workshop' as we must now ludicrously call them) that I attended.   The theory goes like this: the scheme builds on a growing consumer demand for quality local produce and an increased awareness of green issues. Everyone benefits from local pubs stocking locally brewed real ale because:
  • Public houses, as stocking local real ales can increase pub visits.
  • Customers who enjoy greater beer choice and diversity.
  • Local brewers who gain from increased sales.
  • The local economy because more money is spent and retained locally.
  • The environment due to fewer ‘beer miles' resulting in less road congestion and pollution, i.e. reduced carbon dray print.
  • Tourism, due to an increased sense of local identity and pride - let's celebrate what makes our locality different.
I have noticed that locally produced beers tend to be particular popular: Southport beers always go down well around here and local drinkers are proud of their local brewery. Even some people who don't drink real ale are pleased it's there and doing well ~ local pride isn't dead.

The local CAMRA branch defines LocAle as beer brewed up to 35 miles away from the point of sale. Any pub that always serves beer brewed within that limit is entitled to accreditation, with posters and window stickers to tell customers that they support local breweries. Here are the local pubs accredited so far:
  1. Barons Bar (Scarisbrick Hotel), Lord Street, Southport.
  2. Formby Conservative Club, Three Tuns Lane, Formby.
  3. Guest House, Union Street, Southport.
  4. Hop Vine, Liverpool Road North, Burscough.
  5. Prince Albert, Wigan Road, Westhead.
  6. Scarisbrick Arms, Black a Moor Lane, Downholland.
  7. Ship Inn, Rosemary Lane, Haskayne.
  8. Slipway, Crabtree Lane, Burscough.
  9. Volunteer, Eastbank Street, Southport.
See? In the interests of fairness, I even mentioned the Tory Club on this blog! I've been reliably told it's very nice inside. If more pubs are awarded LocAle, I'll let you know.


  1. I suppose it depends how you define success. Licensees do like to receive this accreditation, some have even asked for it, and the scheme is spreading across the country. As people become more aware of what the term LocAle actually means, it will be more successful in helping publicise pubs that sell local beers. So, it's still developing with a long way to go. I personally think it's a great idea.

  2. I like the idea, even if a LocAle originates over 100 miles away in some cases.

  3. Anon: I seriously doubt that. If I'm wrong, where?


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