Brewery has created new ale to mark party's first general election contest
Monster Raving Loony leader Alan ‘Howling Laud’ Hope is toasting success after having a beer named after him and his party.
The Fleet resident, who was born in Mytchett, went to school in Farnborough and was landlord of the Dog and Partridge pub in Yateley, will pull the first pint of the newly-brewed Winning Co’ALE’ition at Basingstoke’s Longdog Brewery this week.
And on September 18, more than 200 invited guests will crowd into Fleet’s Prince Arthur pub for a special launch event.
Among those due to attend are the chairman of Hart District Council, the mayor of Rushmoor, the chairman of Fleet Town Council, the president of Aldershot Rotary Club and more than 30 local councillors.
“Aldershot MP Sir Gerald Howarth is hoping to be there, probably later in the evening, but it all depends on the time he gets back from France that day and how he feels on his return,” said Derrill Carr, who is organising the launch party.
“We are still hopeful that UKIP leader Nigel Farage will be joining us but we will not know until the day before the event.”
A number of Monster Raving Loony Party members from across the country will be attending, along with CAMRA members from four different branches and owners of several local micro breweries.
Mr Carr said a number of pubs have already ordered the ale and discussions are taking place to supply the beer to the House of Commons bars.
“Dan Proctor, the manager at the Prince Arthur where Alan is a regular customer, has already agreed it will become his regular local ale that is available on hand pump right through until the 2015 General Election,” he added.
“A bottled version of the ale will be available before Christmas and an order from St Louis in the USA has already been received.”
Money raised during both launch events will go cancer charity CLIC Sargent.
Produced by Phil Robins of the Longdog Brewery, the new ale and eye-catching pump clip celebrate 30 years since the Official Monster Raving Loony Party first stood in an election.
Mr Carr said: “Back in the May 2010 General Election, Alan took on David Cameron in his own backyard – Witney in Oxfordshire.
“Cameron won easily but when the result was announced Alan was the first to step forward from the stage and shake Cameron’s hand and at the same time raised his own left arm in triumph.
“The photo was in every paper, on the news and went worldwide at the time.
“We used this photo to have a bit of fun and imagine what could have been if the General Election results had been different, ie a different version of the Coalition Government, and have called the new brew the Winning Co’ALE’ition.”
Mr Hope, who became party leader in 1999 following the death of Screaming Lord Sutch, said he was ‘privileged’ to have inspired a beer celebrating his political career.
“Having been in the pub trade for 30 years, I’m very, very proud,” he said. “I’m really chuffed and very excited about the turnout for the Fleet launch party.”
Anybody who wants to attend the launch can contact 01252 622964 or email email@example.com to reserve a place.