The final 'B' leaves Reading

The last ever can of beer left the Berkshire Brewery a few hours ago. You can see it leave below.

It’s a very sad day indeed, made slightly less so by considering the precise nature of some of what was brewed there towards the end. Reading was famous for the “three Bs” – biscuits, bulbs and beer (from Huntley and Palmers, Sutton Seeds and Simonds/Courage respectively). The first two left the town years ago, and now the final one leaves after 225 years of brewing.

I worked at the Courage brewery when it was opened at Worton Grange in the early 1980s. There was a chap there who could recite the names and locations of every Courage pub – and there were hundreds of them at the time.

It’s a shame that the huge machinery and buildings of the brewery only lasted 30 years. Similarly, Dec Park, next to it, lasted less than that. What is it with modern buildings? All that vast steel and conrete over acres and it was only used for 30 years. It’s a crime.

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5 thoughts on “The final 'B' leaves Reading

  1. I’m not completely sure about this, as those are all old traditional industries and I find it very difficult to get overly attached to big company operations – it’s not like they like being overly attached to us, they escape as soon as there’s a penny in it for them!

    I mean, the industrialised Fosters they concocted at the brewery is still going to taste the same wherever it continues to be made.

  2. Yes, OP, Fosters was what I was referring to (“what was brewed there towards the end”). And indeed, they can “brew” that anywhere and it tastes the same. Indeed, there have been rumours of Fosters recycling operations in some pubs…….;-)

    Interestingly, since the Berkshire Brewery has been open, there have been an number of excellent new small breweries opening in Berkshire, all brewing the “real stuff”: Butt’s, West Berkshire Brwery and Loddon brewery.

    Indeed, we move on. Reading is now, I suppose, more the town of Microsoft, Veritas, Foster Wheeler, Oracle, MCI, Prudential etc

    • Good thinking, Howard. Or, bearing in mind that Thames Water have their HQ in Reading, the three “S”s:

      Software, ‘surance and sewage

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