Our new, SDR bottled beer, brewed as part of Romsey Remembers, will be available in local stockists by the end of this month, with a percentage of each bottle sold adding to the funds being raised by the many events in and around Romsey – see the list at the bottom of the page:
The name SDR originates from the Services Rations Department as during the First World War, each soldier was given 2 tablespoons of rum from 1-2 gallon jars each day. Some jars were labelled SRD and it was the highlight of any day. Our beer, whilst not rum, is produced in the same spirit and in commemoration of Armistice Day, remembering the fallen and those returning home. We’ve subtly adjusted the name slightly too, to SDR – Special Draft Reserve.
At the beginning of WW1, the amount of beer produced was 35.5 million barrels (36gal) at the original gravity strength of 1055, about 5.5% alcohol by volume. By 1918, 12.6 million barrels were produced at 1055 with 22 million at a reduced strength of 1030 (about 3.0% alcohol by volume) and sold for 10d a pint (or pence). The reason for the reduction in strength was to do with a lack of raw materials and a certain amount of temperance influence. However, even reduced strength would have been welcome during rest and recuperation; much of which was at the Stanbridge Earl’s Estate.
Ordinary men and many officers longed for a pint of English beer and the lager style offering at the front struck them as tasteless and pale compared to Britain’s warm dark beers.
Flack Manor has brewed a beer which is true to tradition, dark and well hopped. To suit modern times, SDR can be served chilled or warm to suit your palette, although Flack Manor recommends a best drink at temperature of 55°F or 13° C.
The original flaggon has been modified in the image but in reality, it is in its original state complete with iron handle. The original image of the flaggon is supplied courtesy of locally based historian and WW1 expert Martyn Barry
Flaggon supplied courtesy of locally based historian, Martyn Barry, a WW1 expert
Romsey Remembers – Flack’s SDR will be available at many of these events:
Public events in Romsey as the town remembers the fallen in World War One
1. Romsey Methodist Church Saturday 20th October 7.15pm to 8.45 – “Faith under Fire” the army chaplains of WW1 talk by Rev. Dr. Peter Howson former army chaplain – free entry
2. Romsey School Friday 26th October at 7.00p.m. – Phoebe Merrick illustrated talk “After the War, The Peace: Romsey in 1918” – Tickets £5 cash on the door
3. Romsey United Reformed Church Tuesday 30th October at 7.30 – “100 a Concert of Remembrance” Michelmersh Silver Band Tickets £10, concessions £9 from Romsey Visitor Centre
4. Romsey School – Friday 2nd November at 7.00p.m – Dr. Emily Mayhew, Imperial College London “Wounded – The Long Journey Home from the Great War – Tickets £5 cash on the door (includes book signing)
5. Romsey Railway Station Poppy Memorial – Saturday 10th November 11am a moment of reflection for the lives lost in the conflict 1914-18
6. Romsey War Memorial Park – Sunday 11th November at 11am Act of Remembrance at the War Memorial followed by march past of serving military, veterans and community groups in the Market Place
7. Romsey Abbey – Wednesday 14th November at 7.30p.m. – “Concert to remember the end of The Great War of 1914 – 1918” with Patricia Hammond international acclaimed mezzo soprano accompanied by Matt Redman, poetry and readings to “Commemorate the Centenary of the Armistice of 11th November 1918” by students and guests of Romsey School and songs from Romsey Male Voice Choir. Tickets £10, concessions £5 from Romsey Visitor Centre and Romsey Town Hall
8. King John’s House – Saturday 18th November – Experience a 1918 YMCA providing comfort to the troops.Silent films from the period, free admission
9. King John’s House – Sunday 18th November – Auction Sale of Clay Horses more details – www.kingjohnshouse.org.uk
10. Romsey Abbey – Sunday 18th November at 3.00p.m. – Thanksgiving Service free entry
11. Abbey United Reformed Church, Romsey: The Great War and the Centenary – Friday 16th to Sunday 18th November
Exhibition showcasing the research of the Abbey URC, featuring work of The Romsey School