South Devon Branch report: Jan to May 2016

The January AGM went well followed by a lovely tea provided by committee members.

The March meeting took the form of an informative and lively quiz about Devon, conducted by Robert Hesketh. This was an opportunity to learn and participate at the same time and was a unique way of extending our knowledge of the county in a light-hearted and not (too) competitive way. An unusual meeting, much enjoyed by attendees.

A visit to one of only five traditional maltsters in the country proved a revelation in May to members at Tuckers Maltings, in Newton Abbot. Most of the machinery, dating from 1903, is still in use and working well. The malting process, involving partial germination and roasting of barley, is still carried out using traditional methods, producing high quality malts for brewing. Each attendee received a bottle of ale to assess the results. This was a fascinating insight into a process rooted in Devon’s agricultural and industrial life, so it is worrying to know that the weekly tours are likely to be discontinued due to lack of take up.

New members always welcome.

Gwen Davis

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