Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 13°C

Search

The pigs have arrived. See the latest

Pigs Gone Wild

news here.

Suffolk/ Essex: Growler Brewery saved as Nethergate founder leads buy-back consortium

09:08 15 April 2014

Nethergate founder Dick Burge with a glass of Old Growler at a celebration last year marking the beer

Nethergate founder Dick Burge with a glass of Old Growler at a celebration last year marking the beer's 25th anniversary.

Archant

A Suffolk brewer has said he feels like he is coming home after stepping in to save the struggling brewery he founded almost 30 years ago.

Dick Burge has led a consortium to buy back the Growler Brewery, based in Pentlow, Essex, which he originally established as Nethergate in 1986.

The award-winning brewery was put up for sale in March having only been taken over by its current management in 2010, who went about rebranding Nethergate as Growler – its most popular beer.

However, Mr Burge said he wants to bring the company back to its Nethergate roots and renew focus on its core business.

“We’re going to use the Nethergate name much more than the Growler,” said Mr Burge from the brewer’s base yesterday.

“I’ve spoken to our customers today, about 20 customers, and they all say that Nethergate works better. We want to go back to our core business, which is supplying freehouses within our area, which is probably anywhere within 60 or 70 miles.

“It feels like a homecoming, in a way. I’ve always felt emotionally involved in Nethergate as a brand, and I did not want to see it die.”

Mr Burge originally set the business up in Clare, with it moving the short distance to its current site on the Essex/Suffolk border in 2005.

It currently employs 12 people and has an annual turnover approaching £2million.

There were concerns that the recently opened Waggon and Horses pub in nearby Sudbury was in jeopardy having been widely portrayed as a Growler Brewery pub.

However, Mr Burge insisted it was owned by a private individual rather than the brewery, and had never been in the hands of McTear Williams & Wood, which was handling Growler’s sale.

He added: “It is owned by an individual who will still regard it as a Nethergate pub.

“He is very much convinced it should remain as a brewer’s tap – the pub has done very well anyway so far, selling products from Growler Brewery.”

Growler was voted brewery of the year in 2012 by the Good Pub Guide, and has also scooped the Campaign for Real Ale’s national Champion Winter Beer title on two occasions.

2 comments

  • Wasn't it just last year that the brewery reportedly 'saved' the Waggon and Horses and now the brewery has had to be saved itself! Best of luck to the new owners though and I'm sure they will do a much better job than the muppets who were running it previously

    Report this comment

    SSB

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

  • Excellent news. I hope whoever made the bonkers decision to change from the well-known and respected Nethergate name lost plenty of his own money on this. Maybe Dick could persuade Ian Hornsey to come out of retirement to brew a celebration beer?

    Report this comment

    beerlover

    Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Murrayfield Primary School

Children from poor or troubled families have “no excuses” for failing at school, an Ipswich headteacher has said.

Official launch of the Pigs Gone Wild Trail in Ipswich

The pigs have arrived – and already Ipswich is abuzz with talk about the town’s larger-than-life art trail.

Starbucks in the Buttermarket which is set to close on March 19th.

A third Starbucks coffee shop is set to open in Ipswich, it has been announced – just a year after the chain pulled out of its store in the Buttermarket.

Vicar's fears over hacker's extradition

A Suffolk vicar whose son is facing extradition to America for hacking into US Federal Reserve computers fears his son will kill himself if he is sent away.

Lynne cleaned her over while grandson George tried to knock holes in the wall

Do you like your sausages well done? If so, how well done? asks Lynne Mortimer.

St Helen's Primary School - demand for places is high

Plans to launch a free school in Ipswich have been unveiled in a bid to meet an increasing demand for primary school places.

Keith Senior is pictured at Jacobs Allen in Bury St Edmunds

Concerns have been raised about how Thursday’s decision to quit the EU will affect mortgage rates and foreign travel.

Emergency services attend the scene of a road traffic collision on Belstead Road on Thursday 23rd June.

Police are appealing for witnesses following a road traffic collision in Belstead Road, Ipswich last Thursday.

Cedarwood Primary School in Kesgrave. Stock image.

The Parents and Friends Association of Cedarwood Primary School have begun a Crowdfunding project to raise money for new school play equipment.

Police car. Stock image

An accident involving a Honda Civic and a lorry blocked one lane of the A14 eastbound in Wherstead at junction 56, the A137 Wherstead Interchange, this morning.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24