Dec 16, 2017
The UK’s independent brewing scene is booming. Recent figures from the British Beer and Pub Association put the number of active breweries in the UK at more than 2,000, meaning that the UK has more breweries than any other European nation. At the heart of this growth have been the UK’s metropolitan areas, cities such as London, Manchester, Newcastle, Bristol, and many more. But thankfully, that growth hasn’t been restricted to the cities, with more breweries choosing to establish themselves in smaller towns and in rural areas. We’ve even seen established city breweries such as Redchurch in London, start to build production facilities outside of these city hubs. Earlier this year I interviewed Dan Lowe, who co-founded Fourpure Brewing Co. with his brother Tom in 2013. Dan spoke to me about how Fourpure was planning a move similar to Redchurch's, in that they were looking at expanding to a purpose-built brewery on a greenfield site on the outskirts of London. But Fourpure changed its plans (for the time being, at least), choosing to invest more than £2 million ($2.7M) in its existing site in South London. This expansion will involve a new brewhouse, more capacity, and more lab and QC space. Eventually, they’ll also double the size of their taproom. This, along with a whole bunch of other local breweries, including Partizan, Pressure Drop, and Mondo, also investing in their London sites, is indicative that there is still a lot of room here for growth. This growth is also giving newer, smaller breweries a chance to establish themselves too, as the expanding breweries move into other markets, thus freeing up space at the point of entry. Recently, I headed down to Fourpure, at the end of the Bermondsey Beer Mile, to catch up with both Dan and Tom. We talk about everything above and more.