Southern infrastructure

Newhaven incinerator Shoreham Cement WorksJust completed walking the South Downs Way, and aside from the stupendous rural and seaside views, there were some really juicy bits of infrastructure. Probably the newest was the highly controversial incinerator at Newhaven (far left). Not having seen this before, it looked like a rather handsome winter garden, shining in the sunshine albeit sprouting a huge chimney. Probably looks a lot better from the Downs than it does on the ground, although I think it adds to the view, doesn’t detract. Same goes for the stadium at Falmer, which is a real eyeful from Ditchling Beacon and then slowly disappears as one walks east. In reality it is pretty large and looms above people arriving at the station. Near left is Shoreham Cement Works, actually nearer Upper Beeding. There’s been a quarry on the site since the mid-19th century, and production at the plant stopped in 1991. Since then several attempts at redevelopment have been postulated, usually involving housing, though one of the latest is an eco-park with homes for hobbits….. Back down south for the Victorian Society’s Study Day ‘Roll Out the Barrel’ on Saturday 7 May, see http://www.victoriansociety.org.uk/events/roll-out-the-barrel-beer-brewing-and-buildings-study-day/

To Sheffield via London, Hook Norton and Oxford

Shaddon MillOK  so it’s not the obvious route but on the way from the ‘Beer Writing – Past, present and future’ seminar at Hook Norton Brewery this Thursday (where I’m doing a book signing) I’m hoping to take some more industrial photos, including the famous marmalade factory in Oxford and the ‘White Building’ in Sheffield, with its white faience façade showing men engaged in various local trades. Unlike most of these monuments to industry, the men are wearing contemporary clothing; it is far more usual to see industrial scenes played out by dancing cherubs (see, for instance, Nottingham’s former Home Brewery offices) or by workers clad in medieval or even Roman/Greek style (see high up inside the quadrangle at the V&A). The photo is from last weekend, when I saw the old Shaddon Mill (Dixon’s Mill) in Carlisle, with its huge chimney, at one time the tallest in the country; I think the chimney at the Camperdown works in Dundee (which I shall be seeing in a few weeks) now beats it. Let’s hope the good photography weather continues!

Ahoy there Heritage Calling

Sportsman1My post ’10 great places where beer meets the church’ has just gone online at Heritage Calling, the Historic England blog. As to ahoy there, this photo is one of half a dozen sports-themed ceramic tile panels at the Sportsman public house in Huddersfield (in the gents, of course!) The pub is east of the railway station, beyond the viaduct.

A new book in prospect

Liebig5Exciting times here, as I’ve just signed a contract with a publisher to write and illustrate (lots of new photos) a book on Victorian and Edwardian industrial architecture – that is, the buildings most industrial archaeologists seem not to care so much about, meaning the factories and works rather than the mines, infrastructure etc. I have this year and most of next to write the book, and sort out several photography trips, as the whole of the UK is involved, as well as the Republic of Ireland. Publication probably 2016 I suppose. Happy days! My illustration this week is one of Liebig’s trade cards showing a jolly view of the brewhouse in Munich, presumably during Oktoberfest. Enjoy….

Roman beer

Peroni factoryRome might not be the obvious place to go looking for industrial buildings, but there are a few, including the old Peroni factory (1909, architect Gustavo Giovannoni) which stands a little way north of the main railway station (Termini). It ceased to brew in 1971 and was converted to one of the sites of the city’s Museum of Contemporary Art (MACRO) during the 1990s. Later a glass roof was added connecting the two blocks of the works, covering over the old brewery yard. The yard entrance (on the opposite side to this photo) has the word ‘scuderie’ on the archway; google translate tells me this means ‘teams’ – teams of horses? Or?? Need more research!

A brewer’s memorial

Boddington window ManchesterJust finished my presentation for the Northern Architectural History Society meeting next week. Was considering using this pic, which is the memorial window of brewer Henry Boddington (1813-86) at St Ann’s Church in Manchester, but disappointingly (though not unusually) it has no brewing-related imagery. The window was part of a c1890 scheme by artist Frederic Shields on the theme of the good shepherd, all carried out by the firm Heaton, Butler & Bayne. Boddington’s Strangeways Brewery closed in 2005 and was demolished all but its iconic chimney stack, which hung on until 2010 when it too was lost.