Monday, 2 July 2012

The National Brewery Centre

I took the opportunity of a trip to the Midlands to visit the National Brewery Centre in Burton upon Trent. I've been wanting to visit for some time though I did have a nagging fear that it would be a bit rubbish.
As it happens I was pleasantly surprised, both by how much I enjoyed it and how much there is to it. First you go into a room which takes you through the malting and brewing process with displays of the equipment and various things you can start by pushing a button. I avoided the ones that start a speech but was quite taken with the ones that started engines, especially the one that started the screws on a Saladin box.

I was also pleased to see a section of a Burton Union with a detailed explanation. This was needed as even though I had a reasonable idea of what goes on in them they are fiendishly complicated.

Then it was on to the shire horse bit, old beer cars and another old engine. I thought I must be reaching the end by now but in fact there was another three story building to go.

Shiny, shiny

In the middle of the ground floor this had crammed in the new William Worthington's brewery. There were more displays of models and general beery stuff, including a mock old fashioned pub that looks like a prime candidate for Boak and Bailey's museum plan.
"Pint of Burton, please"

The actual bar has some interesting old beer paraphernalia but lacked in atmosphere.

When did Ind Coopoe adopt the red hand logo?
You're give four tokens when you pay your entrance money, but this only entitles you to one half pint or some (presumably very small) tasters. I went for a half of White Shield. It went down easily, being softer than the bottled version, and with a distinct Burton snatch about it.

Then it was back to where I'd started to look round the souvenir shop and peruse the selection of excellent, but over priced, bottled beers on offer.

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