Wednesday, 25 February 2009
The North Wales Plaid Cymru AM is clearly not interested in trying to save part of the history and culture of the Capitol, after all his constituency is Caernafon in North Wales and ignoring the public support for the Vulcan is not going to effect his majority one bit.
The Welsh Assembly Government’s own website proudly claims that the objectives for the Heritage department include:
• Widening access to arts and culture for all
• Conserving, protecting, sustaining and promoting wider access to the historic environment of Wales
• Promoting and developing tourism in Wales.
Unfortunately it appears the Heritage Minister chooses not to read or take notice of his own department's website. Perhaps if Alun Ffred Jones AM offered a bit more clarity on his own dealings with property companies then his office might respond to the criticism levelled at it by campaigners trying to save the Vulcan.
The Save the Vulcan campaign has generated unprecedented support, including:
• 5000 signatures on the petition
• Celebrity support from Rhys Ifans, Huw Stephens, John Inverdale
• Political support from Glenys Kinnock MEP, Jenny Willott MP, Jenny Randerson AM, Chris Franks AM, Leanne Wood AM, David Melding AM, Nick Bourne AM, Cllr Nigel Howells and Cllr John Dixon, among many others.
Tuesday, 24 February 2009
Friday, 20 February 2009
It's bad enough that we have an useless unelected teetotal cyclopean Scot as Prime Minister, now his lackeys who are supposed to be regulating the industry clearly state that they do not know what they are doing.
Could anyone imagine the Armed Forces Minister not visiting a barracks or the Home Secretary not visiting or even being familiar with a police station, albeit just to pick up her armed escort to the local kebab shop?
So teetotal Gordon Brown has placed a Minister in charge of regualting the alcohol industry who admits to not understanding the industry!
One estimate puts the cost to the drinks of this new, unwanted legislation as high as £300 million, so a Minister with at least a vague idea of what they are doing should be in charge, unfortunately the one-eyed idiot who runs this country is hard pressed to find anyone competent in his party.
It's just what a country with a failing economy needs - more legislation. Gordon Brown is the most unpopular Prime Minister since Neville Chamberlain - the sooner a general election is called the better for the UK, the people and of course our pubs.
The Publican also have their take on the story here.
And of course Fido has his take on it.
Wednesday, 18 February 2009
The Great Welsh Beer & Cider Festival will be once again be held at the Cardiff International Arena this June. The highly successful event, organised by CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, will feature real ale, ciders and perries from across the
Above: The Cardiff International Arena, CIA
It may come as a surprise to some people that there are 39 different breweries in
Customers to the Great Welsh Beer & Cider Festival this year will have the choice of over 250 real ales, ciders, perries and German beers, all served in their own, specially commissioned souvenir glass, sponsored by Rhymney Brewery.
The Campaign for Real Ale runs different beer festivals throughout the year in
If customers prefer cider to real ales then they will not be disappointed as 4000 pints of cider and perry (that's fermented pear juice) will be available. Cidermaking in
As well as the real ales, ciders and perries, food will be available all day along with a selection of traditional pub games. Friday and Saturday nights will see live music being performed at the Festival.
There are 17 branches of CAMRA in
- 6000 thirsty drinkers are expected at the 3 day event
- 24,000 pints of real ale, cider and perry will be consumed during the Great Welsh
- Over 10 pints a minute will be served during the festival
- Almost 4000 pints of cider and perry will be available
- Over 250 different real ales, ciders, perries and foreign beers will be available at the Great Welsh
- 2000 pints of German beer will be specially imported for the Great Welsh
- Over 120 CAMRA members will be volunteering to work at the festival
- The bar is 70 metres long!
- The Great Welsh Beer & Cider Festival 2009 is the 9th annual festival, the 2nd at the CIA, the previous 7 having been held at
Cardiff City Hall
- CAMRA outgrew
and with help from the Welsh Assembly Government relocated to the CIA last year Cardiff City Hall
- Pub games, stalls and food will be available at the Festival
Great Welsh Beer & Cider Festival,
Open: Thursday 11th June 11-11, Friday 12th & Saturday 13th June 11-11
View Larger Map
This event is supported by the Welsh Assembly Government
Thursday, 12 February 2009
Wednesday, 11 February 2009
Yes I do like this pub but we are not spoilt for choice in the superpub ghetto that is Newport city centre. Brains Bread of Heaven was the guest beer today and I think SA Brain may have tweaked the recipe a bit this year as this 4% beer is more bitter than I remember it from last year. There are even hops in the nose which is almost unheard of for a beer from Wales' largest proper brewery. NB the factory in Magor is not regarded as a 'brewery', it is an industrial complex that uses waste water from trains using the Severn Tunnel to produce various products that call themselves beer such as Steal a tortoise and the 'the Cream of Manchester'. Think another pint of Brains is called for.
Tuesday, 10 February 2009
New licensee Lee Taylor is definitely ringing the changes in the Bell, Caerleon. But cider lovers need not worry as South Wales' unique and award-winning cider house is not about to change into a chav-palace or, as has happened to pubs to the west of Newport, a curry house, instead Lee has decided to change the opening hours of the Bell and open all day. As well as keeping the cider menu – 24 ciders and perries at the last count, the food menu contains ingredients from local farms, including Trealy farm, as well as local cheeses. The menu changes regularly and recently one popular dish was Gwynt Y Ddraig Haymaker Cider and Butternut Squash Soup.
Another new innovation is that from 1000 on Saturdays and Sundays, the Bell will be open for breakfast.
For those of you who do not like cider, the Bell is also keeping up its tradition of serving real ales including those of the nearby Cwmbran Brewery.
Lee hopes to continue the tradition of regular beer festivals at the Bell and the dates will be published here later.
Bell Inn, Bulmore Road, Caerleon, NP18 1QQ, open 11-11 Mon-Fri, 10-11 Sat, 10-10.30 Sunday.
The cider menu
Monday, 9 February 2009
Former Champion Beer of Wales winner, Rhymney Brewery of Dowlais, have set out to offer customers a choice for the take-away market. Not only do they offer bottles of their award-winning beers but they know offer cans of their beers. In fact Rhymney Brewery are the first craft-brewery in Europe to install a state-of-the-art North American canning line – something that previously was only available to larger producers. Wales has a proud history in canning beer, Felinfoel Brewery of Llanelli were the 2nd brewery ever to can beer way back in 1935 and Rhymney is now following in that proud tradition.
But will the CAMRA purists will be up in arms over canned beer? They need not worry, unlike the mass-produced supermarket cans of stuff that masquerade as beer, the cans of Rhymney Lager, Dark, Hobby Horse and Export are not pasteurised, but merely sterile filtered so that the flavour of the beer is not destroyed by heat. It came as a surprise that for the first time ever when I opened a can I found a canned beer that I liked and could drink. The beer retains condition in it but is not overtly fizzy and the flavour of the beer comes through. It's not some tasteless, eurofizz, but a hand-crafted Welsh beer from the valleys. Not necessarily something I would drink all the time, but ideal for parties and who knows it may even convert some tinnie drinkers into trying real ale the next time they are in the pub.
Rhymney Brewery can regularly be seen at various farmers markets and later in the year at the food festivals and county shows where their products are available.
Thursday, 5 February 2009
OPIN-2008- 0088 - Save the Vulcan!
Leanne Wood 12/11/2008
Peter Black 12/11/2008
Nick Ramsay 12/11/2008
Dai Lloyd 13/11/2008
Bethan Jenkins 13/11/2008
Nerys Evans 13/11/2008
Gareth Jones 13/11/2008
Rhodri Glyn Thomas 13/11/2008
Chris Franks 13/11/2008
Mohammad Asghar 13/11/2008
Leanne Wood 13/11/2008
Helen Mary Jones 13/11/2008
Mick Bates 18/11/2008
Michael German 18/11/2008
David Melding 18/11/2008
Christine Chapman 20/11/2008
Kirsty Williams 24/11/2008
Andrew RT Davies 26/01/2008
Eleanor Burnham 30/01/2009
Save the Vulcan!
Opposes the proposed demolition of The Vulcan Hotel in Adamsdown, Cardiff and calls on the developers to re-consider their proposals with a view to saving this historic pub.
Believes that it will be a great loss to Cardiff and Wales if, in 2009, this pub pulls its last pint.It's not surprising so many AMs have registered their disgust at the demolition of part of Cardiff's past, nor that very few Labour AMs have signed this motion. After all we have a teetotal Prime Minister ruining this country and the Labour Assembly Members hardly want to be seen supporting a pub that their bible-bashing-beer-hating-one-eyed-leader wants to demolish to satisfy his associates in the temperance movement.
Wednesday, 4 February 2009
Bullmastiff Brewery 029 20 665292
From the Welsh Assembly:
Nick Bourne AM, Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly, today launched his “Save our Pubs” campaign by highlighting the problems faced by publicans in Wales.
Nick Bourne said, “I am mindful of the important role that pubs play in our communities and I am fully aware of the impact changes to alcohol duty have had on the pub trade.
I was particularly concerned to learn that research conducted by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) has found that many local pubs are struggling and around 1,300 pubs nationwide are currently under threat of closure.
In these difficult economic times many publicans who live in their commercial properties are faced with eviction due to their mortgage arrears.
Commercial mortgage payers are not covered by the mortgage rescue plan and they are not allowed mortgage holidays. I believe this is extremely unfair on people who have ploughed their assets into their business which is also their home.
In his Pre-Budget Report the Chancellor announced plans to increase alcohol duties in order to help pay for the temporary reduction in VAT. This will add about four pence onto the cost of every pint in pubs.
Meanwhile, drinks bought in supermarkets have had their VAT reduced.
At a time of economic uncertainty and rising costs across the board, I appreciate that for many people the cost of pint at their local pub is becoming increasingly expensive at a time when their disposable income is being squeezed.
I believe that a much better approach would be to specifically target those drinks associated with binge drinking. Last March, the Shadow Chancellor, George Osborne, proposed a revenue-neutral package of changes to alcohol taxation. This comprised tax increases on problem drinks combined with tax cuts on those which have lower alcohol content, such as beer and cider. Similar schemes have proved effective in other countries and have been backed by medical experts and alcohol charities.
I also believe it is time to extend mortgage relief schemes, such as payment holidays, to commercial mortgage payers to help our pubs survive in this difficult economic climate.”