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Great Yarmouth-based Lacons receives blessing for Christmas brew St Nick's Ale

PUBLISHED: 12:51 27 November 2017

Rev Cannon Simon Ward, Rector of Great Yarmouth blessing Lacons Brewery St Nick's beer.
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Rev Cannon Simon Ward, Rector of Great Yarmouth blessing Lacons Brewery St Nick's beer. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2017

Regional drinks company Lacons has launched its annual Christmas beer, St Nick's Ale, with a traditional blessing ceremony.

Rev Cannon Simon Ward, Rector of Great Yarmouth blessing Lacons Brewery St Nick's beer.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYRev Cannon Simon Ward, Rector of Great Yarmouth blessing Lacons Brewery St Nick's beer. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Lacons, which brews in its historic home town of Great Yarmouth but also includes a drink distribution business with its head office in Lowestoft, first brewed St Nick’s in 2013 in memory of a World War Two air raid which badly damaged its original brewery and destroyed the nearby church of St Nicholas, since rebuilt.

The association of St Nicholas/Santa Claus with Christmas has resulted in the beer becoming a popular seasonal ale and this year’s brew was blessed by the Rev Canon Simon Ward from St Nicholas Church, also known as Great Yarmouth Minster.

After blessing the tanks in Lacons’ new brewery, due to be officially launched in the New Year, and the casks of St Nick’s Ale produced within them, he then joined the Lacons team in the brewery tap on site to enjoy a drink from the first cask to be tapped.

Performing the ceremony, Mr Ward said: “We give thanks and we pray for this brewery. We ask that you bless these new tanks, the beer that is brewed in them, the people who work here. And may they bring joy and delight to many.” And after tasking Saint Nick’s, he added: “I thought it was a wonderful pint.”

Rev Cannon Simon Ward, Rector of Great Yarmouth blessing Lacons Brewery St Nick's beer. Pictured with commercial director Trevor Hourican.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYRev Cannon Simon Ward, Rector of Great Yarmouth blessing Lacons Brewery St Nick's beer. Pictured with commercial director Trevor Hourican. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Lacons describes the beer as having a “dark copper glow and charming malty depth” with “spiced orange on nose and palate before a satisfying citrus and floral finish”.

Judi-mae Alderton, marketing manager at Lacons, said: “Saint Nick’s was first brewed by us in 2013 to commemorate the bombing of the brewery and the Minster by the Germans in 1942.

“The fire service at the time was too stretched to save both and decided to save the brewery, the church being reconsecrated in the 1960s.

“Each year when we brew Saint Nick’s ale we invite the vicar or a representative from the Great Yarmouth Minster to visit the brewery and bless the beer, as well as enjoy a taste of it before it is launched.”

Rev Cannon Simon Ward, Rector of Great Yarmouth blessing Lacons Brewery St Nick's beer.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYRev Cannon Simon Ward, Rector of Great Yarmouth blessing Lacons Brewery St Nick's beer. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The original Lacons brewery closed in 1968 but the brand was revived in 2013 after a 45-year hiatus.

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