September 2019




We had a very interesting talk from Geoff on the Welsh Railway at Ffestiniog with a beer tasting to go with it.

The first beer we sampled was Cwrw Eyri or Snowdonia Bitter 3.6% from the Purple Moose Brewery in Porthmadog – a light, slightly citrusy, easy summer drinker. This was a Gold Award beer around 2008.

The second was Welsh Gold, again 3.6%, from the Great Orme Brewery in Llandudno – a popular golden ale with well-developed taste.

The third was Y Brawd Houdini 4.2% from Cwrw Lyn in Nefyn – another lightish-coloured brew with a distinctive bitter after-taste. This was a late substitute for Seithenyn 4.2% from the same brewery, with a sweeter after-taste, which was unfortunately out-of-stock.

The fourth was Dark Side of the Moose 4.6% from Purple Moose again – as the name implies, this is a dark beer but without too much burnt-treacle aftertaste, which is extremely popular in North-West Wales. Again a Gold or Silver award winner around 2006.

The last one was Monty’s Mischief 5.0% from the Montgomery Brewery in Montgomery – another surprisingly pale-coloured beer, but with a bit more body and not too sweet.

Many thanks to Geoff for a great evening.

NEXT CLUB NIGHT –  18th September  

This is a talk by Dr Diana Leitch on the history of soap making from 1803 to 1944. Dr Leitch is a trustee of the Catalyst Discovery Centre in Widnes and is an eminent historical librarian to the chemical industry.


This months lottery winner is number 50 – no winner


Next meeting October 2nd at Julie’s.

At the September meeting Judy was presented with the trophy for the best chutney at the AGM. Better late than never!! The chutney, if I recall, was delicious.


LWBC Walk – Runcorn, Sunday 22 September

In spite of dire weather forecasts 10 walkers made their way to Norton Priory on Sunday for a walk around Windmill Hill , Phoenix Park and the Bridgewater Canal.  Although the weather could not match the glorious autumn sunshine of the previous couple of days the threatened rain held off until we got back to the car park.  Although we were too early for the autumnal colours the walk through the woodland was interesting and the extent of leisure facilities in Phoenix Park a surprise for many. From the park we made our way around the pond and then back to Norton Priory via the Bridgewater Canal where there were a couple of families of swans with nearly fully white cygnets. Many thanks to Anna and Peter for organizing it.

NEXT WALK – 20th October

This month we will be walking up to the Dream statue on the site of the old Sutton Manor Colliery, St Helens.  Park in the small service road, opposite the Garden Centre, just past the Maplewood Chinese restaurant on the A57 at Bold Heath  WA8 3UX.  The walk will take about 2 hours and there is some uphill walking to see the Dream itself.  We can have lunch at Bold Heath Garden Centre (used to be the Wyevale) or the Griffin Inn but neither allow bookings.  Judy and Keith are leading the walk.


PARTY AT THE JONES’ – Saturday October 5th 8pm.  Usual rules (which means, for new members, bring your own alcohol and a savoury or sweet dish)

Annual Dinner 2020 will be on Friday 20th March at Statham Lodge.

CHRISTMAS WALK – Saturday 28th December.  Details later.

A message from Cath 

A big thank you to all of you for the many cards, flowers and phone calls
that I received.  I was really touched to see so many of you at the
funeral.  It is wonderful to  have so many friends at this sad time . I
really appreciate it.  Catherine

A message from Tony  Remembering Those Who Have Served

The Bridgewater Singers are proud to present a concert at St. Mary’s Church in Lymm to launch the 2019 Poppy Appeal for the Lymm and Thelwall districts. 

On Monday 21st October at 7.30pm the singers will perform a concert entitled’ You May Say I’m a Dreamer’, with songs and readings to entertain and reflect on a century of conflict and protest. 

The ticket price of £10 includes interval refreshments. For tickets or further information please email: or ring 01925 755615


10 of us crossed the border into North Wales to visit the Gwinllan Conwy vineyard on Saturday 21st September. After a timely detour to miss roadworks we eventually arrived in glorious weather. Our host gave a tour of the vineyards post harvest and a very interesting talk whilst tasting. Surprising to find that such lovely award winning wines can grow in this part of Wales. They are even being drunk at a Reception Dinner hosted by the Welsh Rugby team in Japan!.” 

  • Pydew (white) – 11%
  • Solaris (Loire NZ style white) – 12%
  • Regent (rose) – 11%
  • Rondo (Malbec style red) – 11%
  • Pefriog (sparkling) – 11.5% – we didn’t taste as they only produce about 500 bottles per year



  Malolactic fermentation

  1. a) changes the flavour of the wine
  2. b) reduces the cloudiness of the wine
  3. c) gives the wine and extra sparkle


The most usual answer to this is a) to change the flavour of a wine but b) and c) can also play a part.  The fermentation does this by converting the fairly tart malic acid present in various quantities in both red and white grapes to the softer tasting lactic acid. In the case of red wines it is used extensively to produce“smoother” tasting wines. It is not used so much in white wine production except notably for some chardonnays to enhance the well known “buttery taste”. As the fermentation goes on the bacteria responsible will add to the cloudiness of the fermenting must, but this is remove in by the normal clearing processes. As the fermentation produces carbon dioxide it will produce a sparkle and this used in the production of some vinho verdes.

September 2019 Question

The highest (ie most elevated) vineyard in mainland Europe is in

  1. a) Switzerland
  2. b) Italy
  3. c) Spain

Graeme Hughes

Graeme joined the Wine Circle in the late 80’s and quickly established himself as an active and enthusiastic member of the club. For a number of years he was a hard-working committee member helping with many fund raising events such as the Barn Dances at the Stringer’s Farm and the Dances at the Thelwall Village Hall. He was our Chairperson from 1993 – 95.

Graeme started his working life at Tetley Walker Brewery; perhaps that is why he was a keen wine and beer maker, creating at times, some unusual flavours in order to please the judges and achieve success when participating in our Annual Shows. He also presented an entertaining Cider Tasting at one of our meetings.

As a member of the caravan section, Graeme would involve himself with the usual activities of walking, visiting pubs and BBQs ( puff balls spring to mind!). Sadly a few years ago he and Betty decided to they could no longer use the caravan. However they always tried to visit us on subsequent camps, the most recent being the August Bank Holiday at Barnard Castle.

Graeme was good company and was always game for a laugh. 

Graeme kept many of us entertained with his jokes and stories and I could always rely on him helping me out with our club comedy evenings.

Remember the sketch entitled ‘The Box’ with Graeme, Peter Head and myself? or his impersonation of Pavarotti at Lillian Palmer’s Comedy night to raise much needed funds for Cancer Research. It was not easy working along side him because of his smile and chuckles, making it difficult to keep a straight face.

Graeme will be sadly missed for his camaraderie, his smiling face and good humour. He was indeed a true friend.