We’ve all used it, but where does the phrase actually come from?
Some say it originates from a story dating back to April 1837 when a party of drunken aristocrats including the Marquis of Waterford created havoc following the Croxton Park races.
According to the London Examiner, the trouble started near Thorpe End bridge in the early hours when revellers attacked the door and window shutters of the toll keeper’s home.
Armed with red paint and plenty of brushes, they went down Beast Market, now Sherrard Street, smearing the front doors of houses, demolishing flower pots and daubing shop fronts.
One of the gang was caught in action – he was bound over in the sum of £200 and told to pay compensation to police and watchmen injured. Arrest warrants were issued for the Marquis and his cronies, who were tried at Leicester Court in 1838. All were found not guilty but were fined £100 each.
We liked the story so much we brewed a beer about it: Melton Red – a full flavoured, well balanced beer with a subtle taste of toasted molasses. Crisp and well carbonated, it’s easy to drink and shouldn’t cause outbursts of local riots and debauched behaviour…