Tom Huggon behind the bar at the Vat and Fiddle researching his recipe
“Tom Huggon” will be a 4.2% ABV English pale ale. It will be our first Nottinghamian Celebration Ale of 2020 and the 38th of the series. Beginning a decade ago with “Alan Sillitoe”, the beers honour the life and works of Nottingham’s native and adopted heroes.
Tom, raised in Burnley, came to the city fifty years ago. As a newly qualified solicitor, and worked at what is now Browne Jacobson. He says: ‘I felt at home immediately, and though I intended to stay for only a couple of years, I was made a partner in the firm in 1972. I was 24 and decided to stay.’
Over the past half century Tom has become a leading figure in the law, the arts and wildlife.
One of his early passions was the preservation of Nottingham’s built environment. He joined Nottingham Civic Society in 1970 and went on to become its president, a role he holds to this day. His interests in the natural world led him to the Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust, and has seen him become warden at Attenborough Nature Reserve. (Not to mention chairman and, nowadays, executive vice president!)
In his own words
Tom reflects on his love of theatre: ‘In 1970, I was privileged to be in the audience at Jonathan Miller’s production of King Lear at Nottingham Playhouse. With a cast that included Michael Hordern and Frank Middlemass, it was no wonder I became a devotee, going on later to become chairman of the board.
‘I remain a champion of Nottingham’s open spaces, Green’s Mill and, oh yeah, thanks to my vocal abilities, I am the city’s honorary town crier.
‘All this pales into nothing compared to my appointment in 2004 as a Deputy Lieutenant of Nottinghamshire,” he says.
‘And now I have a beer. This is something for us all; for people like me – a lifelong member of CAMRA, for newcomers of real ale and to the many regulars at pubs across Nottingham.’
“Tom Huggon” ale is available in pubs in Nottingham and the East Midlands from mid January until stocks run out.