O for a draught of vintage! that hath been
Cool’d a long age in the deep-delved earth,
Tasting of Flora and the country green,
Dance, and Provençal song, and sunburnt mirth.
John Keats knew how to appreciate his wine. It is with his words that we begin an exploration of the story of booze and the Borough. It finishes with a time when wine was at the heart of English life.
The Borough is redolent of beer and wine, of hops and hospitality.
Stroll down Borough High Street where coaches, travellers clutching to their roofs, erupted from narrow entranceways, setting off at first light into Kent.
Hop factors and warehouses evoke laden wagons arriving from Kent, Sussex and Surrey.
A memorial lists hopworkers of the area lost to the First World War; the local trade itself was to follow them.
This tour tells of a graduate with a van and a love for wine, of London’s largest brewery, and of a very dangerous umbrella. It celebrates the grain and the grape, and trade both in times past and today.
For a taster, follow this link HERE for an item about a family at the heart of the hop trade.
Details – Booze and the Borough
Please go to What’s On? to see whether this tour is currently on offer, and for booking details.
MEET: Opposite the Shangri La Hotel at the Shard, St Thomas Street SE1 9QU
Duration: Two hours (approximately)
If you have any questions about this walk, please contact me
Pictures sourced from Wikimedia Commons