Friday, 23 May 2008
I'd be more than happy for South Oxfordshire District Council to "Listen" and "Learn" but I'm very worried about letting them "Lead". This quietly spoken epitaph to Brakspear's Henley Brewery just about sums it all up really. Obviously the sign ordering department went for the expensive re-con' plastic post style, only to find nowhere to plant it - "..saw them posts off Alf and we'll screw it to the wall.." - marvelous - unrestrained initiative at work in the local authority. Brakspear closed the Brewery in 2002 when they fell into the hands of REFRESH UK Plc - you couldn't make that one up could you - and moved, complete with a few bits of plumbing to the site at Witney. Dev's been in, and across the road is some top security residential operation going on. I asked a passing copper if the bars were intended to keep people in or out and he couldn't be sure. The only clue as to the goings on was the vast collection of Porsche Boxsters being watched over by jittery estate agents twitching in the Meadseyesque, Rayban-wearing look out post in the old hoist loft. The main entrance to the old brewery offices and nerve centre has been gastro'd and I couldn't bring myself to photograph that. On a more happy note - an enterprising farmer near to home has started up his own brewery and is doing good trade, he now plans to open a private tasting club complete with straw bales for seats, serving wenches and, seeing as he has smoked 60 a day for as long as I've known him, we'll be able to enjoy a Capstan with a pint of Digfield March Hare. MORE BEER !