Liqueur is hot stuff at working men's club

A WORKING men's club in Lancashire has achieved a rare bacchanalian claim to fame as the home of the world's most serious drinkers of the French liqueur, Benedictine.

Last year the 480 members of Burnley Miners' Working Men's Social Club drank more than 1,000 bottles. And they shun the usual ice mixer to take it with hot water.

Alan Kennedy, the club secretary, who orders up to 90 cases at a time, said: 'It's unbelieveable really just how much Benedictine we drink. We are supposed to be the world's biggest retail outlet.

'If you ask for a Bene 'n' hot anywhere else in the country, people think you're crazy - but we always keep a flask of hot water on the bar so people can top up.'

A figure of 30 per cent of the Benedictine drunk in Britain is consumed in the Burnley, Accrington and Nelson area of Lancashire.

The local passion for the drink was started by soldiers in the 11th battalion of the East Lancashire Regiment during the First World War.

In the cold winter of 1918 the battalion was based in Fecamp, Normandy - where the liqueur is made - and the troops drank Bene 'n' hot to keep warm in the trenches.

On their return the soldiers passed on their liking for the drink.

Later this year 40 members of the Burnley working men's club will visit the Benedictine distillery in Fecamp.

'Its going to be like a visit to Mecca,' Mr Kennedy said. 'The taste has been passed down from generation to generation ever since the soldiers got a taste for it.'

The secret recipe for the golden liqueur was invented in 1510 by a Benedictine monk, Dom Bernardo Vincelli.

A spokesman for Benedictine confirmed that the Burnley Miner's Social Club was the largest outlet for the liqueur in the world.

He said the club members who plan to visit the distillery would be a given a special welcome. 'They certainly deserve it,' he said.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Personal Tax Senior

£28000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer and Markets Development Executive

£22000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company's mission is to ma...

Recruitment Genius: Guest Services Assistant

£13832 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This 5 star leisure destination on the w...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Account Manager

£20000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Account Manager is requ...

Day In a Page

A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory