Clear Brew

10, 20 and 30 Years Ago


It’s fun to look back.

This section is devoted to Inside Beer’s trip down Memory Lane, highlighting the major events that were shaping the brewing world 10, 20 and 30 years ago.

10 Years Ago
June 2007

Tributes are paid to George Bateman who has died after a long illness. Bateman is noted as the saviour of his family’s Lincolnshire brewery, remaining committed to its future and finding alternative finance to keep it open when his siblings decided to sell their shares during the 1980s.

Drinkers in Yorkshire raise a glass to Bill Witty, a longstanding CAMRA activist and the founder of Daleside Brewery, who has died aged 75, after a short illness. Two of his sons, Mark and Bill, have followed him into the brewing industry.

The Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA) appoints CAMRA pioneer Michael Hardman as its new public relations manager. Hardman founded The Campaign for Real Ale with three drinking pals in 1971 and worked for many years in public relations for Young’s Brewery.

Noting the success of Magners cider, which has seen sales volumes increase as bars begin serving the drink ‘over ice’, London brewery Fuller’s launches a similar campaign for its bottled Honey Dew organic ale.

20 Years Ago
June 1997

Following a merger with Brains earlier this year, Buckley’s brewery in Llanelli is to close with the loss of thirty or more jobs. Production will be transferred to Brains’ Cardiff brewery when the site closes early next year.

London celebrates Belgian Beer Week, with numerous pubs and restaurants organising Belgian activities, including chips and mayo eating and, of course, Belgian beer drinking.

30 Years Ago
June 1987

Tolly Cobbold acquires the James Paine brewery in St Neots, Cambridgeshire. The Suffolk company, owned by the entrepreneurs David and Frederick Barclay, will continue brewing at Paine’s for the foreseeable future. Another Barclay Brothers division, Camerons, has also expanded by acquiring the Melbourn brewery in Stamford. The Lincolnshire site has not brewed since 1971 and acts as a museum but the thirty-two pubs that go with it now extend the Camerons estate to 490 houses.

A management buy-out of the Lorimer & Clark Caledonian brewery from Vaux is confirmed and saves the site from closure. With equity capital and funding from one other investor, two of the company’s executives, Dan Kane and Russell Sharp, have bought the Edinburgh brewery, which will initially produce three beers – a 70/- at 1036 OG, an 80/- at 1043 and a 1080 OG strong ale.

Canadian giant Labatt announces an agreement with Greenall Whitley for the production and sale of Labatt beers in the UK. Two beers are planned, one at 1035 OG and the other at 1045.