A populous city, place of my school daze and I’ve even been to both Universities, (to study, I might add, I think!?). Steeped in religious and political history, icons such as the Archbishop of Canterbury, a position that now heads the Church of England and the worldwide Anglican Communion (though the modern-day Province of Canterbury covers the entire south of England). Thomas Becket’s murder at Canterbury Cathedral in 1170 led to the cathedral becoming a place of pilgrimage for Christians worldwide. This pilgrimage provided the theme for Geoffery Chaucer’s 14th-century literary classic The Canterbury Tales. The literary heritage continued with the birth of the playwright Christopher Marlowe in the city in the 16th century.
Many historical structures remain in the city, including a city wall founded in Roman times and rebuilt in the 14th century, the ruins of St Augustine’s Abbey and a Norman castle, and perhaps the oldest school in England, The King’s School. Modern additions include the University of Kent, Canterbury Christ Church University, the Marlowe Theatre, and the St Lawrence Ground, home to Kent County Cricket Club.
See, a bucket load of history and fek all beer.
Over the years, Canterbury has had breweries – the oldest in the cloisters in the grounds of the cathedral, though to the old Canterbury Brewing Co, long since deceased. The excellent Canterbury Beer Shop, alas went, (but has given us the Butchers Arms in Herne; a modern day pillar of the ale scene in Kent.) We had a Belgian beer centric restaurant, Cafe Belge, and that’s gone. Even to go on a walk about for a few pints, you’re very limited. The Pheonix, once the best ale pub in the area, has since gone. We have the “Brewery Tap”, a Michael Cane restaurant affair, that does on it’s merits have an interesting selection of local ales, a spot I am not unfamiliar with. Land rents, rates and the powers of the local church have had a stifling effect, but the town has a £1.3billion year economy… But that’s about it.
Until now that is:
Sister to the Belgian Beer Bar in Ramsgate, a belgian centric offering. I have seen the building, and yeah it’s nice. Keep an eye on their website for more information.
The Bottle Shop,
It looks like The Bottle Shop will be opening on November the 22nd at The Goods Shed in Canterbury. They’ll be selling beers from 12pm to 11pm and will have access to the market floor for table service and ordering from our expertly written beer menus from 6pm onwards. There are still a few obstacles to overcome but it’s looking really possible that those coming to Canterbury will be able to get access to the best British bottled beers available along with some corkers from Europe, Asia and America. Stay tuned for more details.