It’s not all about the DIY

I wouldn’t want you to worry. Yes, I may have taken a month off from the blog, but you will be reassured to know that I didn’t take a month off from beer. That would have been silly.

Today, I wanted to mention one of the beers that I drank during the last few weeks. Today, it won’t be a Guess Brew review, because I am less interested in how the beer tastes (pretty good, if you’re interested) and more focussed on why the beer exists. That’s got you wondering now, hasn’t it?

We live in the south west, home to the 630-mile long South West Coast Path, snaking its way across mile upon mile of beautiful coastline. Large sections of which are owned and maintained by the National Trust. St Austell Brewery – one of the westcountry’s brewing success stories – has teamed up with the National Trust to brew The Gribbin; a limited edition beer named for one of those self-same stunning coastal locations.

The Gribbin itself can be found just outside of St Austell in Cornwall, and is a spot that I have stared at many times from across St Austell bay. I even walked across it once, one crisp, clear winter’s day. A great big red and white day mark stands sentry on the headland; a striped square tower acting as a landmark for those on land as much as those on the sea.

St Austell Bay

St Austell Bay

The Gribbin headland was secured for the National Trust in 1965 with the assistance of the St Austell Brewery, and the new beer helps to both commemorate 50 years of protecting the coast as well as raising a bit of money for the current coffers. Twenty pence from every bottle will be given to the National Trust to help protect the south west’s coastline.

Is this money needed? In my view, yes. We live on an island and the coast is such an important part of our landscape. I am biased I know, but living near the sea gives us access to so many magnificent places. Beaches, bays, cliffs and headlands. Promenades and piers. All of these variations make up the edge of our country and I think that we ought to look after them. The National Trust owns 300 miles of coast in the south west, but they look after 775 miles nationwide and each mile of footpath that they maintain costs them £3000 each year (source: National Trust website). That is a lot of twenty pence pieces.

Wherever you are in the country, you can find out more about the National Trust’s coastal campaign on their website. And if you fancy a beer this week, you could do much worse than a pint of The Gribbin.