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British Guild marks 25 years
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20 Aug 2013 3:16 PM
The British Guild of Beer Writers hits 25!
The British Guild of Beer Writers celebrated 25 years of activity with a party at
Fuller’s Parcel Yard pub in King’s Cross on August 12, which featured specially
brewed beers from many of the Guild’s corporate members.
The organisation was formed in 1988, after the UK’s two leading beer writers Roger
Protz and Michael Jackson met over a pint and bemoaned what seemed to them to be a
media blackout on the coverage of beer.
‘Michael grumbled that he was better known in Belgium and the United States than he
was in his own country,’ recalls Protz. ‘At the time, the Guardian employed not one
but two wine writers and would occasionally, once or twice a year at most, run
pieces by Michael or myself. The rest was silence.’
Jackson, who died in 2007 and was famously known as the Beerhunter, went on to
become the first chairman, while Protz served from 2000 to 2003.
The Guild now has a membership of over 220, including well-known journalists plus
popular and prolific beer bloggers.
Meanwhile the amount of books written by members runs into many hundreds and
includes such best sellers as The Beer Book, 1001 Beers You Must Try Before You Die,
Shakespeare’s Local, Hops and Glory, 300 Beers To Try Before You Die, Craft Beer
World, World Beer, World Atlas of Beer, Haynes Beer Manual, and the Little Book of
Beer Knowledge. Members have also (and continue to) write for every national paper
and many regional ones, as well as consumer and trade magazines, at home and abroad.
With these millions of words, the Guild’s commentators have helped shift the public
perception of beer during its existence: writers have celebrated regional
differences, enlivened the debate over beer styles; promoted beer and food matching;
grasped at and developed a new language to describe beer and supported the vibrant
and emergent craft beer scene all the while being a general force for the important
place that beer has in Britain’s culture and life.
Current chairman is Tim Hampson, who was also a founding member. He said: ‘Beer
touches just about every corner of our lives: from the farm to the glass the
production and consumption of beer is something that most people have an opinion of.
And that is why beer writing matters.’
For more information on the British Guild of Beer Writers contact the Secretary
Adrian Tierney-Jones on email@example.com
(mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org) or 01398 324314.
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