Major Beer Tank Rupture Floods Streets In the UK

While hardly the disaster that the London Beer Flood of 1814 was, it still was a mess…

According to the Manchester Evening News, a ruptured beer tank led to waterfalls of wort cascading from the roof of a brewery and spilling into the streets of Middleton, England.

The incident which took place at J.W. Lees’ Greengate Brewery on March 19th was caused by “a malfunctioning keg at the brewery,” according to the Drinks Business “which overflowed and sent torrents of wort – the sugary liquid extracted from the mashing process during the brewing of beer – spilling from the sky.”

A spokesman for J.W. Lees said that no one was hurt and added that in spite of the spectacular visuals “many of the brewery’s employees weren’t even aware the incident had happened.”

And speaking of visuals, check out the beer eruption captured by Paul Beadle who was driving by.

J.W. Lees opened its Greengate Brewery in 1828 – 14 years after the notorious great beer flood of London….Now that was a flood.



Meux Brewery in around 1830

On October 17, 1814, a vat burst at the Horse Shoe Brewery sending over a quarter million gallons of beer into London’s streets.

The vats, which belonged to the Meux and Company Brewery, a major supplier of porter-style beers in the area, sent 15ft high tidal wave of beer weighing several hundred tons sweeping through the city, crashing buildings, flooding cellars, and eventually killing eight unfortunate souls.

The brewery was taken to court but the jury ruled it an Act of God and no one was prosecuted.

Parliament fined the company over £20,000 but Meux & Co successfully petitioned to be let off paying £7,250 in excise duty which saved it from bankruptcy.

The Great London Beer Flood remains a solemn holiday for us at the ACB compound and we consider it our duty to leave the office early, drink heavily and somberly dine on bangers and mash.

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