Monday, May 16, 2011

CT Column 4/05/2011:A Right Royal Snub

LAST Friday’s Royal wedding should really have been a celebration of everything that England does well. Unfortunately instead it turned into a shining example of how the English can denigrate and disregard the very things they excel at.
A week before Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding it was announced that beer would be banned from the reception. An insider was quoted as saying, “Let’s face it, it isn’t really an appropriate drink to be serving in the Queen’s presence at such an occasion.” So apparently despite the fact that beer is Britain’s national drink, one of it’s few surviving manufacturing industries, one of the icons that people think about when they think of Mother England (the Royal family being another!) and an industry that has a long and proud association with the Royal family, it is not appropriate for it to be consumed in the Queen’s presence. There is of course no evidence that the Queen holds these views. Her mother was an enthusiastic drinker and was often photographed pulling and drinking pints of ale at ceremonial occasions, Prince Charles has his own brand of beer that uses organic barley from his own estate and one of the ways the Royal family marked the birth of William was to brew a celebratory ale! In 1982 Earl Spencer , William’s uncle travelled to Burton Upon Trent to brew Princes Ale to mark the birth of the new heir to the throne. So what has happened? I suspect as so often happens with the Royal family, the spin doctors have got it terribly wrong. It would have been bad enough for Britain’s national drink to have been omitted from proceedings but they have gone further than that by describing beer as being inappropriate for the occasion, a huge slap in the face to the English brewing community and one that comes after breweries throughout the UK have been brewing Royal Wedding Ales to mark the occasion and wish the couple well. English beer writer Pete Brown called on those brewers to re-brand their wedding ales with republican motifs and for pubs to not play the wedding coverage. A sad state of affairs and one that as a self professed anglophile makes me cringe. On a more positive note closer to home the world’s first 100% peated malt beer, Yeastie Boys Rex Attitude was released with much Scottish fanfare last Saturday. More on that next week! Cheers.

1 comment:

JK said...

Good post mate, those comments certainly irritated the shit out of me! I went to work as usual, brewed 'inappropriate' beer and ignored the circus i was paying for...