If you eat them, you’ll experience severe cramps. But hop it is one of the most important crops in England. Used in the brewing process, it adds that distinct bitter flavour to beer. The most famous centres in England for growing this crop are Herefordshire, Shropshire, and Kent. It’s at the centre of a global industry and now, a lottery funded film will educate the country about the vital British hop tradition. The film was produced thanks to lottery funding over the last couple of years. Two major centres have already shown the film locally. They are the Ludlow Assembly Rooms (Shropshire) on the 3rd of March, and Malvern Theatres on the 6th. Now it’s on national tour.
Celebrating The British Hop Tradition
The film used a newly discovered collection of images by a photographer from Herefordshire called Derek Evans. The stills showed British hop tradition life from the hop growing and production process in the 1950s and 1960s. It depicts family life, groups of people travelling to the area for so-called “hop holidays”. This now dead tradition brought people from all over the country by any means necessary to pick and harvest and share camp fires at night. It was produced for HLF funded project called Herefordshire: Life through a Lens. The enormous collection of images is presently being scanned and digitised to broaden the audience. The college responsible will also hold an exhibition of Evans’ photographs.
Did you know that the hop plant is related to the cannabis plant? You should not eat hops as their intensity will give you a bad stomach and a terrible headache. Any attempt to consume the fruit other than through beer is strongly recommended against. They were once used as pillow filler material to aid sleeping. This is not surprising as they have a similar effect on calming the mood.