Co-ALE-ition News

Co-ALE-ition Testimonial from the Fleet Lions Ale Festival Organiser

2014_5801_Fleet_Lions_Ale_Fest_Aug_036Fleet Lions were honoured to be able to offer the first public occasion when all six Co-ALE-ition ales could be sampled. They’re a very tasty bunch of brews with a nice selection of tastes – something for everyone. The concept of the rebranding is excellent. Alan and Derrill have delivered a massive amount of extra publicity that these small micro breweries will benefit from but couldn’t afford to pay for. It’s a great back scratch! The new rebranded labelling really stands out and made for a terrific display at the Lions Pieces of Eight Beerfest.
Jim Storey

Monster Mash real ale in a bottle is heading for a complete sell out by the end of this month.

So clear you can see the fingers through the glass, lively as well with a nice head.Total sales of Monster Mash in a bottle so far have exceed all my expectations. Sales to date, including confirmed orders still to be delivered, have just reached 900 bottles so there are now just 8 cases (100 bottles) left and we will have completely sold out the full Mash brewery allocation of 1000 bottles at this special edition low price which will never ever be repeated again.
The latest batch of Monster Mash has a best before date of May 2015 so once you have bought it and there is no rush to drink it.

If anybody wants to order any more bottles, now is the time as I still have stock in my garage so if you want any cases let me know asap.
I have attached a couple of photos of perfect pints of Monster Mash, sent to me by delighted customers, who have re-ordered cases of Monster Mash again this week

Co-ALE-ition 1st Anniversary event – Wed 27th August 2014

Where: The Nags Head pub in Reading from 7pm. The Nags Head is in Reading Town Centre and is only a short walk away from both the railway and bus stations. The Nags Head is a superb real ale pub with lots of atmosphere and was CAMRA Pub of the Year for the Reading branch area in 2014 and was also voted into the Top 16 covering the whole of the UK in 2013.

What: All 6 Co-ALE-ition ales will be on sale at a pub for the first ever time together plus bottles of Monster Mash will be available to take away as a souvenir at the end of the night. Howling will be reminding us all of the Co-ALE-ition achievements over the past year and will be announcing awards and making some presentations. CAMRA representatives from the local branch will be there to present The Nags Head with their Pub Of The year award for 2014. A nearby, highly recommended, Indian restuarant is lined up for those who want a curry at the end of the night.

Jody Oates (Landlord of ther Nags Head) has gone to a great deal of trouble as have all the Co-ALE-ition breweries to put this Co-ALE-ition 1st year anniversary event on for us. At the last count we had 24 people confirmed as attending which does not include the local CAMRA branch members.
Monster Raving Loony Party wise all of the following have previously confirmed they will definitely be attending – Howling, Chinners, Knigel Knapp + poet, Tony Davies (Blackpool), Mark Beech (Walsall) and hopefully the Mad Hatter (Oxford) and the Baron (if he wins the lottery!!). At least three of the Co-ALE-ition breweries will have representatives at this anniversary event.
There is plenty of room for everybody who wants to come to this event, the more the merrier. Please contact Derrill Carr by email i.e. or 07803 292557.

Co-ALE-ition partners!!

2014_5611_Steve_Lawson_George_Osbourne_AugSteve Lawson, Monster Raving Loony Party sympathiser and our No 1 supporter and taster of the Co-ALE-ition brand of ales is pictured with George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer and member of the Coalition Government, in the gardens of his residence at Dorneywood House in Burnham (Bucks).
Steve, who is not related to Nigel (former Chancellor of the Exchequer), took the opportunity to tell George all about the Co-ALE-ition brand of ales. Steve showed George a pumpclip or two containing the famous photo of David Cameron and Howling taken at the Witney General Election in May 2010 with Howling’s arm lifted triumphantly in the air. Steve even got a smile from George when he explained that the ALE in Co-ALE-ition stood for “Another Loony Experience” and even bigger one when he showed him the Hope & Glory pumpclip and told him IPA stood for “Insanity Prevents Austerity”.
Steve, who is an active member of CAMRA, took the opportunity to mention lowering beer duty and encouraging more people to drink responsibly in pubs rather than at home. Steve asked George to do more to reduce the ever increasing rate of pub closures (now averaging 31 per week in 2014, up from a high of 26 per week in 2013) by freeing up pub landlords from brewery ties and making it far more difficult for owners to demolish pubs and build supermarkets and houses/flats on the vacant land.
As George rushed off back into Dorneywood House for a 3pm meeting, Steve handed him a bottle of Monster Mash as a reminder of their Co-ALE-ition meeting.

Howling gets the Lions’s roar of approval at Fleet Ale Festival

Howling on the special Co-ALE-ition stand

Howling on the special Co-ALE-ition stand

Alan “Howling Laud” Hope was the special VIP guest at the annual Fleet Lions Ale Festival on Saturday (9th August) which was held at the Harlington Centre in Fleet. Alan affectionately refers to the Harlington Centre as his personal gym and office as he visits this building regularly in his capacity as a Fleet Town Councillor.

Howling and Dan Franklin (one of Fleet Lions' Ale Festival organisers) with the Stomping Nomads in the background.

Howling and Dan Franklin (one of Fleet Lions’ Ale Festival organisers) with the Stomping Nomads in the background.

There were two sessions at this Ale Festival, the afternoon session which attracted around 250 people and the evening session had a full house of around 600 by 7.30pm. The total of 800+ people was a record attendance for the Fleet Lions Ale Festival and by 9.30pm when the Festival closed they had drunk all of the ale and cider i.e. over 3000 pints.

As there was no wastage of ale or cider, Fleet Lions were able to maximise both their income and profit which means a substantial boost to the amount they donate to their nominated charity.

Certificate presented to Jonathan Hellem, Jim Storey and Dan Franklin

Certificate presented to Jonathan Hellem, Jim Storey and Dan Franklin

For 2014 this is ” Sailability ” which through the partnership of Farnham & District Sports Association for the Disabled and Frensham Pond Sailing Club enables disabled people and those with illnesses to experience and enjoy sailing in a safe and supervised environment. Two bottles of Monster Mash, personally signed by Howling, were donated as prizes to the Fleet Lions raffle and the winners were delighted to get them.

2014_5604_Fleet_Lions_Ale_Fest_Aug_034Howling opened both the afternoon and evening sessions and was also the MC for the whole day, introducing the two live bands etc. Howling took the opportunity both on the stage and in many conversations with the customers afterwards to put the Monster Raving Loony Party firmly on the map. There was lots of banter about OMRLP policies and references to the Dukes of Hazzard show and Howling was more than happy to respond with his well honed Boss Hogg impressions. Howling was in demand for many photos and also to personally sign bottles of Monster Mash.

A local pirate, Howling & Jim Storey

A local pirate, Howling & Jim Storey

All six of the currently available Co-ALE-ition ales were on sale at the very same time and also at the same venue which was a notable 1st for Co-ALE-ition. Howling presented a signed, framed certificate to acknowledge this achievement to the three main Ale Festival organisers from Fleet Lions — Jim Storey, Dan Franklin and Jonathan Hellem (see photo).

The six Co-ALE-ition ales on sale at the Fleet Lions Ale Festival were as follows:-

  1. Longdog brewery’s “Winning Co-ALE-ition”
  2. Langham brewery’s “Co-ALE-ition Gold”
  3. Ascot Ales’ brewery’s Co-ALE-ition “Hope & Glory”
  4. Wild Weather brewery’s Co-ALE-ition “HowlinGale”
  5. Mash brewery’s “Monster Mash”
  6. Ascot Ales’s brewery’s Co-ALE-ition “Monsters In The Dark”

Boss Hogg meet Huggy Bear

All six Co-ALE-ition ales were very popular and the sales of Monster Mash had to be suspended part way through the afternoon session to ensure there was some left for the evening session. The ales were served in excellent condition in specially produced Ale Festival half pint glasses.
In addition Howling and Derrill between them sold 82 bottles of Monster Mash as people left the Ale Festival at the end of the afternoon and evening sessions. Adding these Monster Mash bottle sales to the 6 casks of Co-ALE-ition sold means that almost 500 pints of Co-ALE-ition were sold on Saturday (9th August) and over 400 pints of Co-ALE-ition were drunk very responsibly in just 8 hours on one single day, which is yet another formidable record for Co-ALE-ition.
Co-ALE-ition brewery “Mash” from East Stratton near Winchester were very successful on the day. Monster Mash was the 1st Co-ALE-ition ale to sell out and was 3rd overall. In addition 82 bottles of Monster Mash were also sold as takeways and finally the best achievement of the lot Mash brewery’s Amber Ale was voted by customers as the best ale or cider at the Festival.
There is no doubt that Howling’s presence and involvement added to the enjoyment for people on the day and he also had a positive effect on both the numbers attending and on the final donation to the nominated charity.
There will be follow up publicity in the local paper (News & Mail) next week and also by the local branch of CAMRA in the next edition of their quarterly magazine

Baron Von Thunderclap downs Monster Mash

2014_5521_Baron_Norman_10_AugA delighted Baron and his father Norman, who is one of the newest members of the OMRLP, taking delivery of their cases of Monster Mash bottles in West Sussex.
71 cases (852 bottles) of Monster Mash have now been sold in just three weeks since the official launch. There are now only 12 cases (144 bottles) left and we are confident we will comfortably sell out all 1000 of these special edition bottles, which will never be on offer again at the price of £19.95 per case of 12 including free delivery.

Fleet Lions are Sailing to another Roaring Success

One of the highlights of the Fleet calendar returns once again on Sat 9th August and for the second year running it will take place at the Harlington Centre In Fleet which is very handily placed in the Town Centre. Fleet Station is a 15 minute walk away and local buses stop very near to the venue but only during the daytime.
The aptly named “Pieces of 8 Beer Fest” as this is the 8th consecutive year the Fleet Lions have organised this Ale Festival, has a pirates theme this year and prizes are on offer for the best outfits on the day, so dress to impress and dont be late for the Pieces of 8.

Advance tickets are selling very well and the Fleet Lions organisers confidently expect a record attendance this year, building on the outstanding success of the previous year which was their first year at the Harlington Centre. The facilities at the Harlington Centre both indoors and outdoors are second to none in the Fleet area and everything is in place to make this the best and most successful Fleet Lions Ale Festival so far.

Ticket prices per session are £7 in advance on the Fleet Lions website or £8 on the door subject to availability, these prices include a very special commemorative glass produced by local Fleet designer Andy Johnson.

The official sponsors are the Hammerpot brewery from Sussex and thanks also go to Chris Gill of the Ascot Ales brewery who has been particularly helpful and supportive.
The Fleet Lions Ale Festival this year will be raising money for the charity “Sailability”  which is a partnership between Frensham Pond Sailing Club and Farnham & District Sports Association for the Disabled. This money will provide opportunities, for people of all ages with disabilities and illnesses, to experience and enjoy sailing in a very supportive and safe environment.

There are two sessions at the Fleet Lions Ale Festival, the afternoon session is from 11 till 3 and the evening session is from 5.50 till 9.30. As always drinking and behaving responsibly, especially when customers leave this town center venue, are critical factors which will be used to judge the overall success of this Ale Festival.

Entertainment will be provided by the Stomping Nomads in the afternoon who will be playing an eclectic mix of blues, country, skiffle and bluegrass music. In the evening it will be Fleet Booze Hound Blues Band providing the entertainment. There will be a barbecue in the afternoon and evening and all of the meat will be supplied by Clarks the Butchers from Fleet and fresh rolls baked on the premises were obtained from the local Morrisons.

There are 38 different real ales available this year from 15 different breweries including ales from some of the very best local micro breweries in the area e.g. Andwell, Binghams, Sherfield Village, Siren Craft, Longdog, Ascot, Wild Weather, Windsor & Eton and Mash. In addition Dark Star, Loddon, Dorking, Hammerpot and Langhams have supplied a range of their ales.   The strongest ales available are Nelson’s Blood (6% abv) brewed by the Nelson brewery from Chatham (Kent) and Sound Wave (5.5% abv) brewed by the Siren Craft brewery from Finchampstead (Berks). Locally produced ciders will also be available.

All six of the Monster Raving Loony Party’s range of Co-ALE-ition ales,  brewed by award winning local micro breweries, will be on sale together for the first ever time including Longdog’s ” Winning Co-ALE-ition ” ale which was sold in the Strangers Bar at the Houses of Parliament last month . Monster Mash real ale in a bottle will also be available to take away as a souvenir for just £2 per bottle. Alan Hope (Leader of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party) will be officially opening both the afternoon and evening sessions and will be bringing his own brand of fun and humour to this event.

Monster Mash in a bottle has now been officially launched – 25th July 2014.

2014_5193_Graham_Turner_Mash_Brewery_Jul_007The official launch event and final tasting took place at the Mash brewery in East Stratton, Hampshire on Friday 25th July. The first batch of 15 cases (180 bottles) of Monster Mash were put on sale at the special promotion price of £2 each or £19.95 for a case of 12 bottles. Deliveries started on Friday evening, the bottles themselves generated lots of additional interest and customers were increasing their original orders and by the end of Friday night, all 15 cases had been sold.
A total of 58 cases (696 bottles) have already been pre-ordered at the special promotion price. We are on track to sell all 1000 bottles of this limited edition before the end of Sept and once they are gone that is it, certainly at these low prices. Therefore if you want Monster Mash in a bottle and your must have souvenir collectors item bottle, featuring Howling and his OMRLP Cabinet, you do need to move very quickly and place your order with Derrill Carr, whose contact details are as follows:-
phone number:- 01252 622964
mobile number:- 07803 292557

Monster Mash in a bottle will be on sale at the OMRLP conference in late Sept to be held at the Ridgebourne Inn in Mid Wales and also at the Fleet Lions Ale Festival on August and the 1st year Co-ALE-ition anniversary in Reading on 27th August.
The photo is of Dr Graham Turner (Mash brewery Co-Owner and Head brewer) tasting the first bottle of Monster Mash and giving it the green light.

Co-ALE-ition 1st Year Anniversary Party, Wed 27th August 2014

I often think back to 17th & 18th September 2013 when we launched our very first Co-ALE-ition ale “Winning Co-ALE-ition” at the Longdog brewery in Basingstoke followed by the event at the Prince Arthur in Fleet when over 300 people attended. I could never have envisaged that we would be here now with 6 different Co-ALE-ition ales and total Co-ALE-ition sales currently running at over 1,000 pints per week. We have even had a Co-ALE-ition ale on sale in the Houses of Parliament being drunk by four MPs and also on sale in David Cameron’s constituency pub in Witney plus in over 100 pubs in 8 different counties and in Central London as well. I remember lots of people telling me Co-ALE-ition will have died a death before Xmas to which I always replied “which year do you mean?”

Everybody is welcome to come along and celebrate the 1st year anniversary of Co-ALE-ition at The Nags Head in Reading (5 Russell St, Reading RG1 7XD) on Wed 27th August from 7pm. Jody Oates (Landlord of the Nags Head) has organised this very special event for us at the best real ale pub In Reading and the surrounding area. We went to The Nags Head on 3rd April for the launch of Wild Weather’s HowlinGale and had a great night. The Nags Head has been awarded the 2014 Pub Of The Year by the CAMRA Reading & Mid Berks branch and in 2013 was also CAMRA Central and Southern regional area Pub of the Year and voted into the Top 16 CAMRA real ale pubs across the whole of the UK.

All 6 Co-ALE-ition ales will be on sale in a pub (Nags head) for the very 1st time. In addition our very own Monster Mash real ale in a bottle will be on sale to take away as a great souvenir of this event. A signed certificate presented by Alan Hope, plus a free bottle of Monster Mash will be given to every person who manages to drink responsibly whilst consuming a half pint of all 6 different Co-ALE-ition ales on the night.

Co-ALE-ition Hall of Fame annual awards and presentations will be made by Alan “Howling Laud” Hope. This will include the presentation of a signed and framed certificate to Jody Oates to acknowledge The Nags Head becoming the first pub to have all 6 Co-ALE-ition ales on sale at the very same time.

The local branch of CAMRA i.e. Reading and Mid Berks will also be attending to present Jody Oates and his team at The Nags Head with the Pub of the Year award for 2014. I have lost count of the number of years in succession that The Nags Head has won the local CAMRA Branch Pub of The Year award.There will be a Meet the Brewer opportunity hopefully involving more than one of our Co-ALE-ition brewers.
There will be lots of surprise guests attending this special anniversary event and we will no doubt be adding to the entertainment as the date gets nearer.

Reading is a great place to hold this event with its excellent transport links and the train and bus stations are only a short walk away from The Nags Head. There is a very good Indian restaurant nearby for those who want to finish the night, in the traditional Loony Party way, with an Indian curry.

Please let Alan Hope (07946 292557) or Derrill Carr (07803 292557) know if you are attending this anniversary event on Wed 27th August so that we can put further plans in place.

Co-ALE-ition highlights and achievements (Top 20 only)

In less than a year since the first Co-ALE-ition ale was launched back on 17/18 August 2013, all of the following milestones have been achieved.

1. Over 20,000 pints of Co-ALE-ition have now been sold.

2. Co-ALE-ition ales together with the pumpclips have already appeared in 100 different pubs across 8 counties and in Central London as well.

3. Longdog’s Winning Co-ALE-ition was served in The Strangers Bar (Houses of Parliament) on 25th June 2014 and was successfully launched by four MPs including a current member of the Coalition Govt — Sir Gerald Howarth (Aldershot), Maria Miller (Basingstoke), James Arbuthnot (NE Hampshire which includes Fleet) and Simon Hughes (Bermondsey MP for the last 31 years and Coalition Govt Minster of Justice). Howling and Knigel Kapp representing the OMRLP plus Lisa Robins (Londog brewery joint owner) were all in attendance to witness this momentous occasion.

4. A total of eight different Co-ALE-ition ales have been successfully launched and six of them are still available and on sale today.

5. The first pub to sell all six Co-ALE-ition ales was the Waggon and Horses at Hartley Wintney (Hampshire), a special signed and framed certifcate will be presented to Niall Scott, the Landlord, later this month. The Waggon and Horses was one of the launch pubs for Monsters In The Dark on 3rd July

6. The first venue to have all six Co-ALE-ition ales on sale at the very same time will be the Fleet Lions Ale Festival on 9th August, Howling is the VIP guest and he will be opening the event and presenting a special signed and framed certificate to the Organisers (Jim Storey, Daniel Franklin and Jonathan Hellem) on 9th August 2014.

7. Two Co-ALE-ition breweries i.e. Longdog (Winning Co-ALE-ition) and Ascot Ales (Hope & Glory) have each sold more than 100 casks (7000) pints of Co-ALE-ition so far, special signed and framed certifcates will be presented to the Brewery Owners, Phil and Lisa Robins at Longdog and Chris Gill at Ascot Ales later this month.

8. One Co-ALE-ition brewery i.e. Ascot Ales has sold Hope & Glory in over 50 different pubs already, a special signed and framed certifcate will be presented to Chris Gill, the Brewery Owner later this month.

9. One pub, the Prince Arthur in Fleet (Howling’s local), has sold almost 90 casks (over 6000 pints) of Co-ALE-ition (three different ales). A special signed and framed certificate will be presented to Dan Proctor (Manager) when the Prince Arthur reaches the magic total of 100 casks (7000 pints).

10. Co-ALE-ition ale special launches have taken place in the following five cities — Winchester, Oxford, Reading, Bath and the City of London.

11. Howling and all five OMRLP cabinet members (Flying Brick, RU Seerius, Baron Von Thunderclap, Chinners and Knigel Knapp) attended the launch events for Monster Mash in May. Who can forget that replica pumpclip photo of Howling and his Cabinet, Howling dancing the Monster Mash and the launch of the OMRLP European policies document in Winchester.

12. The final Co-ALE-ition ale (Monsters In The Dark) was launched across three different counties (Surrey, Berkshire and Hampshire) in one night (3rd July). We finished up at the Hook Tandoori (rated the best Indian restaurant in Hampshire) where we took a group photo of Howling, Chinners and the Baron together with the chef and his team which is now signed and framed and appearing along side Princess Anne, Justin Rose and other celebs who have previously visted the Hook Tandoori for a meal.

13. Famous people who we know have drunk a Co-ALE-ition ale include Pete Staples (band member of 60s pop group The Troggs), Sir George Young (MP and former Coalition Govt Minister), Sir Gerald Howarth (Former Govt Minister and MP for Aldershot), Maria Miller (Former Coalition Govt Minister and MP for  Basingstoke), James Arbuthnot (Former Govt Minsiter and MP for NE Hampshire) and Simon Hughes (Coalition Govt Minister and MP for Bermondsey).

14. A Coalition ale i.e. Ascot’s Hope & Glory was selected as the 2014 World Cup ale offering at the Prince Arthur in Fleet. Hope & Glory has also been sold at the Royal Military Academy bar in Sandhurst and also at Windsor racecourse recently.

15. Wild Weather’s HowlinGale has been sold to the AWRE (Atomic Weapons Research Establishment) social club in Aldermaston and was nicknamed Loony Fuel as the ale would light up when drinking it in the dark!! HowlinGale was also on sale at David Cameron’s favourite constituency pub (The New Inn) in Witney (Oxfordshire) whose Landlord is the Chairman of the Local Conservative Association.

16. Two Co-ALE-ition ales i.e. Monster Mash and HowlinGale were sold at The Albion in Winchester. The Albion was the former HQ for the Monster Raving Loony Party back in Nov 1997 at the Winchester by-election when Screaming Lord David Sutch stood for the final time as an OMRLP candidate. It was fitting that Howling and all five OMRLP Cabinet members were able to return together to The Albion for the Monster Mash launch event.

17. We are very confident that Wild Weather’s HowlinGale should soon be on sale at more than 500 Weatherspoon pubs across the whole of the UK, for three months, sometime during early 2015 in the run up to the next General Election. More news is expected in late July/early August. Co-ALE-ition ales have featured at 8 different Ale Festivals in 2014. Co-ALE-ition ales have also been sold in more than 40 CAMRA Good Beer Guide pubs and in 6 CAMRA GBG pubs which have recently been voted as Pubs of The Year in their CAMRA branch area. Derrill and Howling are both active members of CAMRA.

18. More than 50 Co-ALE-ition newspaper and magazine articles, all naming the Monster Raving Loony Party and featuring Howling have appeared so far. Howling on the BBC Politics Show with Jo Coburn in June openly discussed Co-ALE-ition, Howling also displayed the Longdog Winning Co-ALE-ition pumpclip, and was able to discuss Co-ALE-ition in a live interview about sponsorship with Graham Sharpe (William Hill).

19. At least one Co-ALE-ition ale will be sold on steam train trips in August 2014. The Real Ale Train (RAT) is operated by the Mid Hants Railway aka Watercress line and is very popular and always sells out. I have organised tickets for over 50 people (alas despite extensive promotion and advertising there was will be no Loony Party presence on these trains). I have a reserve list of 6 people wanting to go if anybody decides to drop out, suffice to say nobody has dropped out so far!!.

20. We will soon have our very first bottled conditioned Co-ALE-ition real ale, it will be Monster Mash (500ml) and the label on the front features Howling and all 5 members of the OMRLP cabinet. We have confirmed advance orders (including one from the USA and others in the NW of England) for over 50 cases (600+ bottles) and have made them available at a knockdown price (10% below the lowest trade wholesale price). We have the opportunity to sell up to 83 cases/1000 bottles so orders can still be made at the special opening offer price of £19.95 per case (12 x 500ml bottles), contact Derrill or Howling. Monster Mash on sale in a bottle will make its debut at the Fleet Lions Ale Festival on the 9th August(however Monster Mash bottles can only be sold as people leave the Festival and are not to be drunk on the premises).

 Derrill Carr                                                                     15th July 2014