It’s the longest pub crawl in history. Leading beer writer Roger Protz has been trawling the world for more than 30 years in search of perfect pints and pubs and has now written of his adventures in a book that will appeal to all who enjoy a glass of good beer.

Roger’s journey started outside a pub in east London, nursing a ginger beer while his father and uncle enjoyed pints inside. The young Mr Protz observed: ‘As customers arrived and left, I would glimpse through the briefly open doors the secret, all-male world of the pub. These were utilitarian times. There were few creature comforts. The customers stood and drank. The floor was composed of bare boards and the air was wreathed in cigarette smoke. But I could hear laughter and conversation. It was a world I wanted to join.’ Roger was first able to enter “licensed premises” when he worked in the astonishingly boozy world of national newspapers in Fleet Street where so much alcohol was consumed by “scribes” and “inkies” that it was a miracle the papers ever appeared.

In the mid-1970s, Roger turned his beer-drinking hobby into a career when he went to work for the Campaign for Real Ale. Roger recalls the job interview with his ex-Evening Standard colleague and later CAMRA co-founder, Michael Hardman: ‘I applied for the post of assistant editor of publications with the campaign and went to its head office in St Albans for an interview with Hardman. It was a brief meeting. ‘I was on the Standard, you were on the Standard, so you’ll do,’ he said. ‘So you’ll do’- three fateful words that launched me on a new career as a full-time beer writer.’ Roger’s beer-related travels have taken him to the United States, where craft brewers have brought back choice and diversity to a country ravaged by Prohibition. He recalls his first visit to Czechoslovakia in the 1980s, where getting information from the communist authorities was difficult: at one brewery in Prague he was chased away by a guard with a machine gun and a snarling dog. To Germany, and on one of many visits to the world-famous Oktoberfest, Roger was horrified to find himself sitting on Hitler’s favourite bench in the Hofbrauhaus beer hall.

Belgium is also high on his radar and he details such amazing styles as sour red beer, lambic beer made by spontaneous fermentation, using wild yeasts in the atmosphere, the struggle to save the great ales brewed by Trappist monks, and the successful campaign to rescue Hoegaarden from the tender mercies of the world’s biggest brewer, InBev, whose name means something extremely rude in Brussels slang.

A Life on the Hop is an amusing romp around the beer world and is devoid of beery jargon. It will be enjoyed not only by beer lovers but also by those who enjoy travel writing.

‘A Life on the Hop, Memoirs from a Career in Beer’, is released Monday March 9, and is available from all good retailers, and from the CAMRA website- The book is priced at £10.99 for CAMRA members and £12.99 for non-members.