Vine Brewery
27 - 29 High Street, Tarring

UPDATED 11th Feb 2014 - behinds the scenes

       
 

The Vine Brewery in Tarring village is now the Vine Pub.

Although the building is much older (see the Vine on the main page) it became a beer shop and brewery in 1843 and was run by Richard Parsons.

The picture shows the pub frontage with possibly Jane Parsons standing outside, wife of Henry who was running the business in 1901.

 

 
   
A view from the beer garden at the rear looking east.

It is clear to see that this is a brewery building that means business, the brew made here must have been much more than the public house front could sell and so the Parsons family would have supplied the local area.

   
With thanks to Ron and Kay Majors, we have been able to look a little deeper into the story of the brewery.

Entering the back garden area you can see what is a substantial building. The double doors on the first floor give the impression that this would be where barley was hoisted up.

The brick arch above the door is not as wide as the current doors, indicating that later alterations took place.

The upper floor, since divided up, could have served as a malting house.

   
Viewed from the far end we can see what is an ivy covered, cast-iron water tank. It was common practice to brew downhill. The water from the roof top tank would fill the cooking vessel. From there the liquor would drain under gravity to another tank or vat below to ferment, and from there to barrels.

 

 

   
There is still a well in the back garden (capped). It would have been easier to pump the water up to the top tank and use gravity for the rest of the job!
   
This is what we found in the first floor back room. This view is looking under the old cast-iron roof top tank.
   
 

This is what we saw as we stood underneath and looked up. That is the bottom of a brewing vessel

 

   

One stainless steel brewing tank! What looks like floorboards above is the cast-iron base of the old water tank, which was left in place.

   

Well, it's not Victorian that's for sure. We do however know that landlord John Chambers, purchased the equipment from a bankrupt brewery in Scotland and had it transported down to Tarring village, successfully blocking the high street for the day.

   


Did the far end house a steam engine used to pump water up to the tank and perhaps drive some machinery ?
A very curious feature at the west end of the brewery has puzzled us for a while. The brick pillar is an oddity, it has a flat platform on the top that implies something rested on it. The base has a case iron hatch similar to that found on old coal ovens where the ash was collected.

   

Looking inside the small door behind the flowerpot reveals a bricked up doorway that is directly under the brewing vessel on the ground floor.

   


Two excellent examples of Parsons beer jugs. The right hand picture shows one that would accommodate a wooden tap.
   
The Parsons family remained in business up until 1936.  
   

1843 - Richard Parsons
1901 - Henry Parsons