Ban this filth

A quick look under my stairs…

Manchester Star, 7.3% Southwold Winter IPA, 6.7%
Duvel, 8.5% Old Tom, 8.5%
Past Masters Double Stout, 7.5% Brakspear Triple, 7.2%

What do all these beers have in common? Five of them are terrific beers (and I’ve got high hopes of the (Adnam’s) M&S Winter IPA, which I haven’t tried yet). The Double Stout is a limited edition and a bit pricy, but none of these is particularly rare, exotic or expensive – every one of them was bought from a supermarket.

Oh, and there’s this:

News from Suffolk: The local Police, fed up with ‘offies’ selling super-strength cider and lager to known nuisance characters, are encouraging the offies to stock nothing above 6.5% ABV. It is a voluntary scheme, with a slow take up, but it is a positive step towards dealing with the products that are associated with most of the problems. Responsible drinkers will be heartened by this news and we look forward to seeing the scheme adopted locally.

This is a quote from the (frankly rather strange) Nottingham CAMRA magazine Nottingham Drinker, which startled me somewhat on a recent visit to the town. When it was discussed here some more information about the Suffolk scheme was forthcoming in comments:

While the Ipswich scheme is “voluntary” the Plod have been dropping hints that those NOT joining in may find a few objections come licence review time. Oh, and the Co-Op has already stated it’s adopting the scheme across ALL Suffolk stores.

Ipswich off-licences, the Co-operative across Suffolk – it sounds like it’s foot-in-the-door time.

Let’s hope this is just a misguided initiative in one corner of the south, and that if it does spread any further it will get a robust response from CAMRA – although if it comes to Nottingham, it sounds as if they’ll be pushing at an open door. Hands off our strong beers!



  1. Posted 3 January, 2013 at 10:33 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Jesus Christ. Are they going to ask offies to stop selling wine and spirits too? Also, is that quote effectively a local CAMRA branch endorsing this nonsense, or have I misunderstood?

    • Phil
      Posted 3 January, 2013 at 10:57 pm | Permalink | Reply

      I don’t know how Nottingham Drinker works, but it certainly seemed to be a regular column from a CAMRA representative. Really bizarre. And, as you say, it’s not as if strong beer was the only thing you could buy at over 6.5%.

  2. Posted 4 January, 2013 at 9:28 am | Permalink | Reply

    Saw this on Anglia News the other week. It really takes the piss, putting decent high ABV beers in the same category as tramp juice. If this spreads into Norfolk, I’m leaving.


    P.S. M&S Winter IPA is exactly the same as Adnams Innovation. A nice and fruity American style IPA. Delicious.

  3. Posted 4 January, 2013 at 12:54 pm | Permalink | Reply

    It’s to be hoped that one or more of the affected breweries will show some backbone and sue the pants off the police for this.

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