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Can you help find 'rare' beer label from former Norfolk brewery ahead of 'premier' event?

PUBLISHED: 13:34 02 October 2019 | UPDATED: 13:34 02 October 2019

The breweriana event will be held at Southwold Arts Centre, St Edmunds Hall, Southwold.  PHOTO: Nick Butcher

The breweriana event will be held at Southwold Arts Centre, St Edmunds Hall, Southwold. PHOTO: Nick Butcher

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It is one of the oldest beer related collecting societies in the world.

Rev Eric Doré secretary of the Labologists Society, ahead of its annual 'label of the year' event. Picture: Courtesy of Rev Eric DoréRev Eric Doré secretary of the Labologists Society, ahead of its annual 'label of the year' event. Picture: Courtesy of Rev Eric Doré

And a popular annual event is set to be held for the first time in Southwold next weekend.

The Labologists Society, an international society of label collectors and British Brewery Research which was founded in 1958 to promote the hobby of beer label collecting, will hold its premier event - the 'Label of the Year' - on Saturday, October 12.

The Labologist's Society - an international society of label collectors and British Brewery Research. Picture: The Labologist's SocietyThe Labologist's Society - an international society of label collectors and British Brewery Research. Picture: The Labologist's Society

Taking place at the Southwold Arts Centre, locals are being tasked with "a challenge" of searching their cupboards and attics for unusual brewery items and ephemera - as the society invites them to "bring any kind of interesting breweriana" along with them on the day.

The event, which takes place between 11.30am and 5pm, is being hosted in Southwold by Adnams plc, a corporate member of the society.

The label for Deathly Pale, the much sought after Adnams bottle from 1972 – labels are common – and also the Centenary Ale that replaced it when Deathly was withdrawn. Picture: Courtesy of Rev Eric Doré
The label for Deathly Pale, the much sought after Adnams bottle from 1972 – labels are common – and also the Centenary Ale that replaced it when Deathly was withdrawn. Picture: Courtesy of Rev Eric Doré

It will include a 30-minute talk by local historian and former quality control brewer at Adnams, Robert Porter, at noon as he provides a history of Adnams and the Sole Bay Brewery.

The society's secretary, Rev Eric Doré, who lives in Wrentham, has been responsible for co-ordinating the Southwold event.

The Adnams Suffolk Nut Brown Ale label. Picture: Courtesy of Rev Eric DoréThe Adnams Suffolk Nut Brown Ale label. Picture: Courtesy of Rev Eric Doré

He said: "We are delighted that the 2019 Label of the Year will be held in Southwold, and we hope that as many people as possible will come along and enjoy the day.

"In addition to thousands of beer labels there will be stalls selling beer mats, brewery playing cards and a brewery bookstall!

"Many labels sell for well under £1 each, and all profits will be donated to the charity Fresh Start - New Beginnings.

"It is an extremely worthwhile charity providing therapeutic services for sexually abused children and young people in Suffolk and Norfolk."

The hobby of collecting beer labels is now an international activity and although modern labels are mostly inexpensive to obtain, there is a high demand for rare older labels - some of which are worth considerably more.

Rev Doré said: "We never cease to be amazed at the rare labels that people find."

Issuing a challenge ahead of the event, Rev Doré said: "So, here is a challenge to the people of East Anglia - to find a label from Phillips St Edmunds Brewery, which brewed at Paradise Road in Downham Market, Norfolk until 1946.

"We believe that labelled bottles of beer from this brewery did exist, but despite extensive research, no bottle label has ever been found, so could you be the person who discovers the first one?"

He added: "A beer label of interest linked to Southwold, is Adnams 'Deathly Pale' which was brewed in 1972 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Adnams family involvement with the Sole Bay Brewery.

"However, because of the questionable skull and crossbones label design for this the strongest of beers, it was withdrawn from sale quite quickly.

"The unused labels are fairly common but full bottles of the original beer are hard to find."

Visit labology.org.uk/ for further details or to join the society email Peter Standen at members@labology.org.uk



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