News Archive

  • Branch Pub and Brewery News (June 2018) Sunday 1 July 2018

    Pub news:

    On 17th May there was a meeting of the people who have pledged to invest in the purchase of the Crown, South Moreton. This resulted in an increased offer to Worthmore Investments, which has been accepted.

    The Keep in Wallingford has installed a cider handpump, drawing the cider from a box under the bar.

    Ye Olde Leathern Bottel, Goring, closed on 13th May. It was once a pub but has been a restaurant, latterly Italian, for many years.

    Brewery news:

    Amwell Springs Brewery in Cholsey is installing a six-barrel plant, with support from Dave Maggs (ex-supremo of West Berks).

  • Branch Pub and Brewery News (May 2018) Tuesday 29 May 2018

    Pub news:

    The Cross Keys in Wallingford has reopened with the availability of quality real ale high on the agenda. Four cask ales sourced from the Marston's subsidiaries, including a weekly changing guest are currently available.

    The campaign to save the Crown, South Moreton, has raised pledges for £230k and this has enabled them to offer the current owner, Worthmore Investments, £340k. The balance would be made up with loans. However, this offer appears to have been turned down because another potential buyer has offered £450k.

    Our award of Pub of the Year to the Flowing Spring, in Playhatch, was generously covered in the Henley Standard, with a shorter article in the Reading Chronicle too.

    There are new tenants in the Cherry Tree, Stoke Row, and the Station House, Henley.

    Brewery news:

    Bell Street has produced a special beer to mark the Royal wedding – Hooray Harry at 4.1%.

    Amwell Spring in Cholsey is planning to produce cask ale in addition to the current bottled range.

    Loddon has a new mild – ‘Wilfreds’. The flavour is dryer than one would expect from a mild.

  • Branch Pub and Brewery News (March 2018) Monday 26 March 2018

    Pub news:

    The Unicorn, Kingwood Common, has new tenants, locals Rachel Salman and Alex Smith.

    Sam and Richard at the Reformation, Gallowstree Common, say they will not be renewing their lease in August as they want a break from the very busy life of running a pub. They have let Brakspear know now, so that new tenants can be found ahead of the summer season.

    The Queen Victoria, Henley, has recently closed at short notice.

    The Little Angel, Henley, has a new manager, John Thirlway.

  • Branch Pub of the Season for Winter 2017/18 Tuesday 23 January 2018

    The Branch Winter 2017/18 Pub of the Season is the The Catherine Wheel in Henley. Heather Harris is shown here holding the award that was presented by South Oxfordshire CAMRA Branch Chairman David Cooper.

  • Branch Pub and Brewery News (January 2018) Friday 19 January 2018

    Pub news:

    The Wallingford Arms, Didcot, closed around four years ago – it was in a poor condition then, and presumably has deteriorated further, and looked ripe for demolition for housing. So it’s a welcome surprise to see that it’s having a major refurbishment, presumably in advance of reopening.

    The Fox Inn, Cane End, closed as a pub some years ago and has since been a variety of mainly unsuccessful Asian restaurants. A Wargrave developer has submitted a planning application to SODC to demolish it and build six houses.

    Landlord changes are imminent at our Autumn Pub of the Season, the Sun, Whitchurch Hill, and the the Town Arms, Wallingford; and there is a new manager at the Station House in Henley. There is a sign outside the Queen Victoria in Henley, advertising for a new tenant.

    Brewery news:

    Bell Street Brewery is producing Brakspear’s Mild as a January special.

  • Branch Pub of the Season for Autumn 2017 Sunday 17 December 2017

    The slightly belated Branch Autumn 2017 Pub of the Season is the The Sun at Whitchurch Hill. The licensees are Giles Langford and Nina Taraborrelli. Giles is shown here holding the award that was presented by Chairman David Cooper.

  • Save the Crown in South Moreton Sunday 17 December 2017

    South Moreton are seeking local support to save their village pub, The Crown. The previously Wadworth-owned pub was closed by the brewery in 2016, and has been threatened with conversion to a curry house, which thankfully never came to fruition. A property developer is now seeking planning permission to convert the site into three separate houses, and this has fuelled the local residents to fight to keep the Crown as their local pub.

    To keep up to date with news of the campaign and to register your interest, visit their website or Facebook page. All supporters are invited to a special community meeting taking place on January 13th 2018 at Hall Farm, Mill Lane, South Moreton, OX11 9AJ. There will be presentations and opportunities for questions, accompanied by a pig roast and licensed bar.

  • Pledges needed to save village pub Saturday 11 November 2017

    The Fleur de Lys in Dorchester is up for sale. It has an ACV listing and the community are proposing to buy it and run it for the village. They need to raise about £600,000 from a mixture of share sales and loans. The deadline for them to put in a bid is 27 November and are, at present, about £200,000 short of their target. They are collecting pledges to subscribe for shares in the Community Benefit Company that has been set up. The minimum subscription is £100 and maximum £100,000. No money need change hands yet. Offers of loans are also welcome

    The Fleur is a popular pub in this attractive tourist destination and currently profitable. It is a past Branch Pub of the Season and GBG entry. We encourage all CAMRA members to make a pledge and help to save this historic pub for our area.

    For more information, see their website.

  • Woodcote Rally presentation 2017 Wednesday 1 November 2017

    CAMRA volunteers work hard every year to make the Woodcote Beer Festival a success. Half of the money we make goes to CAMRA's campaigning funds and half to the Woodcote Rally which uses it to support local good causes. Over many years now, the CAMRA beer tent has been one of the major contributors to the Rally funds. In fact the Rally Committee expects that the 2018 event will bring the overall total of charitable donations to over £500,000.

    The photo shows SOX Chairman David Cooper presenting the 2017 cheque to Pete Solomons of the Woodcote Rally, accompanied by CAMRA Regional Director Carl Griffin.

    Woodcote Rally next year will take place on the weekend of 14th-15th July 2018.

  • Regional Pub and Club of the Year 2017 Tuesday 22 August 2017

    The Nags Head in Reading has been voted as our Regional Pub of the Year for 2017. 2nd Place went to the Royal Oak in Wantage, followed by the Valiant Trooper in Aldbury in 3rd.

    Our Regional Club of the Year for 2017 has been chosen as the Royal British Legion in Marlow, followed by the Stanford Social Club in Stanford in the Vale and then Goring Social Club in 3rd.

    Congratulations to our Regional winners who will now be put through to the National competition.

  • Branch Pub of the Season for Summer 2017 Thursday 3 August 2017

    The Branch Summer 2017 Pub of the Season is the Flowing Spring at Playhatch. Licensees Nick and Hazel have recently purchased the freehold for the pub from Fuller's, which is a fantastic achievement. This Pub of the Season award is affirmation of the quality, and now the variety, of real ales served at the pub.

  • Cider Pub of the Year 2017 Thursday 11 May 2017

    South Oxfordshire CAMRA has made The Keep, Wallingford, our Cider Pub of the Year. The Keep, as many will already know, is the branch's first micropub which opened a year ago in what was a record shop just off the crossroads in the centre of Wallingford. The photo shows branch Chairman David Cooper handing the certificate to Sam Smith, one half of the partnership that owns the pub.

  • Branch Club of the Year 2017 Saturday 22 April 2017

    St George’s Night at the Goring Social Club was celebrated with an evening of music provided by the Roy Bailey Band. On the same evening, the Club’s commitment to real ale was rewarded by the presentation of South Oxfordshire CAMRA’s Club of the Year award, for the second year running. The picture shows Club Secretary and SOX member Ian King (left) presenting the award to Steward Dave Dean and Assistant Steward Adam Smith.

  • Branch Pub of the Season for Spring 2017 Thursday 20 April 2017

    The Branch Spring 2017 Pub of the Season is the Blueberry, Blewbury. The licensee is Mariana, who is shown here holding the award that was presented by Chairman David Cooper.

  • Branch Pub of the Year 2017 Thursday 20 April 2017

    South Oxfordshire CAMRA's Pub of the Year for 2017 is the Fleur de Lys, East Hagbourne. The picture shows Ruth and Darren Sargison of the Fleur receiving the award from SOX Chairman David Cooper. 

  • Jamie Manson wins Branch Darts Tournament Tuesday 28 February 2017

    South Oxfordshire CAMRA’s 36th annual darts tournament took place this month; this year’s venue being the Dolphin, Wallingford. In a closely fought contest Jamie Manson and Nik Kudryavtsev emerged as winners of the two mini-leagues with Jamie taking the crown in a best-of-three final. The photo shows Jamie (right) receiving the champion’s shield from branch Secretary Paul Dixon.

  • 25-year service awards for Goring Social Club Stewards Saturday 31 December 2016

    These days, is seems that if a pub isn’t shutting, it’s having a change of landlord every few years. To be Mine Host for 25 years must be a rare event, but it is one that was celebrated at Goring Social Club on New Year’s Eve. During a break in the music a few minutes before midnight, members were informed that, in two days’ time, the Club’s Stewards, Dave and Jane Dean (pictured right), would complete 25 years’ service at the Club. A CAMRA Special Award certificate was presented to Dave and Jane. Many thanks to Ian King for organising the presentation and photo to mark the occasion.

  • Branch donates Woodcote Rally proceedings to local charities Saturday 5 November 2016

    South Oxfordshire CAMRA branch recently gave the representatives of the Woodcote Rally a donation of £2,500 which came from the money the Branch made by running the beer tent at the event last July. This will be used to support local charities. The picture shows Pete Solomons of the Rally Committee receiving the cheque from Derek Graham, the SOX Festival Treasurer.

  • Branch Bristol Pub Crawl Saturday 24 September 2016

    Janet Humphrey has very kindly written up the very successful branch pub crawl in Bristol that took place on the 24th September. If you would like the re-live the day or would just like to find out more about the pubs in Bristol that we visited, please download Janet's report. Many thanks to Janet for taking the time to write the pub crawl up.

  • 2016 Autumn Pub of the Season Awarded Thursday 1 September 2016

    Four times a year the SOX Branch makes a Pub of the Season award. This often (though by no means always) recognises licensees who have been making an effort to improve pubs that previously may have been under-performing a bit. The Fleur de Lys, East Hagbourne, was a tad sub-optimal when the current licensee Ruth Sargison (pictured right) took it on. Now, assisted by police sergeant husband Darren, she has elevated it into the latest Good Beer Guide and the Branch is delighted to recognise Ruth and Darren’s achievements by awarding them 2016 Autumn Pub of the Season. The Fleur is a Greene King pub but has a generous guest beer policy. There is a wide range of good pub food on offer and regular entertainment. Each July, Fleurfest features a full weekend packed with entertainment. See http://www.thefleurdelyspub.co.uk for more details.