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Question of the Week
How much would you accept for Omar Bogle?
Mentioned Part 65
By: Rob Sedgwick
"No disrespect to the likes of Grimsby..."
wednesday 21st june
From 'Morbo: The Story of Spanish Football' by Phil Ball
"There's a nice pre-match murmur and a smell of cigar smoke as I walk up between the seats. The ground reminds me suddenly of my boyhood team, Grimsby Town, and the old wooden Barrett Stand where I used to pay fortnightly homage. It always takes a while to understand another ground, to recognise that it has a history, characters and a whole socio-cultural baggage that you can never fully appreciate, mainly because you yourself have been brought up on a different model.
There is nothing you can do about this, but the older you get the more you are prepared, at the very least, to admit the possibility that another team might have a history as colourful as the one in your heart, and that it might have things of interest that yours never had. Nevertheles, the first sensations here at Recre are ones of solidarity. It's an instinct you pick up from having watched too much Fourth Division English football, for I can smell failure in the air, can see it etched on the faces of the crowd as I climb the stand. It's something in the way the people sit, hunched and resigned, as if they've come despite their better judgement."
Spotted by David Taylor.
Brewing Capital of the UK
Grimsby, a UK town known for its food production, believes it has the ideal transport infrastructure, customer base and cold storage capacity to become the country's brewing capital.
A local government initiative has been launched in order to highlight what the town has to offer brewers. The campaign focuses on the ways the area can help tackle the supply and distribution problems that the industry is now facing.
"The council wants to help support the brewing companies which have been attracted to the area by offering them packaging, logistic and delivery services which are all locally based," said North East Lincolnshire Council's economic development officer, Andrew Moore.
There is no doubt that the brewing industry is under enormous pressure at present. Customers often expect deliveries to be made within 12 hours and within specified time windows. It is for this reason that Grimsby is portraying itself as a potential capital of brewing.
There is certainly huge customer potential. Some 40 million people - 75 per cent of the UK population â€“ are said to live within a four-hour radius of the town, which is situated on the north east coast of the UK.
Good transport infrastructure is another selling point. Major cities are easily accessible by road or rail, and the port of Grimsby links easily on to the A180 dual carriageway and then to the M180, which quickly leads to the M62 and M1.
In addition, the Humberside airport, located a few miles further out, making connections to Europe possible.
The brewing campaign builds on Grimsby's reputation as a food-producing town. It is home to one of the largest concentrations of food and drink processors in Europe, with over 500 food and food-related companies are based in the area.
These include brands names such as Birds Eye, Geest, Mariners and Baxters. Production is concentrated at three main sites, and 90 per cent of the businesses at the 500-acre Europark operate in the food industry.
The burgeoning food production industry in Grimsby is historically associated with fishing. Although the region's fishing fleet is a fraction of what it was back in the 1950s, Grimsby is still the fish processing capital of the UK.
Between 50 and 70 per cent of the country's white fish is processed in the town, which amounts to over 750,000 tons a year. It is this, said Moore, which forms the foundation of the region's food processing industry.
"As a legacy of the fishing industry, Grimsby has the largest concentration of cold storage in Europe," he told FoodProductionDaily earlier this year.
"The skills developed in fish processing have over the years been translated into other aspects of the food industry. For example, all Haagen Dazs ice cream in the UK is at some stage stored in Grimsby."
It is this availability of cold storage that should appeal especially to brewers. The council claims that there is 45.98 million cubic feet of public cold storage available, including the state-of-the-art, 18.72 million cubic feet regional consolidation centre, which can hold 35,000 pallets.
Although local companies use a lot of the cold storage space, the council says there is room for products - including stock piling of alcoholic beverages - from new companies relocating to the area.
To encourage relocation, there are grants available from Europe and from the UK government. The regional council puts together grant packages that identify what funds are available and how firms should go about securing them.
But although the land and premises are available, few companies involved in brewing have yet moved into the area. North East Lincolnshire Council hopes to change this.
"We are trying to encourage those businesses that are related to food and beverage production, such as engineering, packaging and transport, to also choose to locate here," said Moore.
"Ideally, I want to be able to look out of my window and see the complete supply chain in front of me."
Spotted by Jonathan Parkes.
Expect a big performance tomorrow; we always do well against the big teams. What's more, it's on Sky - so Amdy Faye is guaranteed to play well. Might be worth a couple of quid on De Zeeuw as first scorer too, even if we don't get anything out of the game. We've fought for years amongst the likes of Grimsby and Crewe (all disrespect intended) and this is what it's all about, so let's make the most of it.
Spotted by Grim Rob.
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