Yorkshire beer returns to base
of its flagship Best Bitter
After 35 years on the road and round the mulberry bush, Theakston's Best Bitter has returned to the bosom of its family in Masham, North Yorkshire. The family-owned T&R Theakston has announced that Best Bitter will return to the brewery after an absence of 35 years.
The brewery now has the capacity to take on its flagship brand as a result of investment and expansion at the plant, which was founded in 1827. The beer's return marks the fifth anniversary of the return of the brewery to family ownership, following its sale by Scottish & Newcastle to four Theakstons brothers.
Managing director Simon Theakston said: "It was in 1974, at the height of the cask beer revival, that Theakstons bought the Carlisle State Brewery and moved some of its beers there.
"Since my brothers and I regained control of the company five years ago, it has always been our intention to bring all brewing back to Masham. For the past few years, Best Bitter has been brewed by John Smiths at Tadcaster, always with our recipe, raw materials and quality control.
"But there's no place like home and the return of Best Bitter to Masham will be a cause of great celebration."
In 1984 Theakstons was taken over by Matthew Brown of Blackburn. Brown was then bought by Scottish & Newcastle in 1987. As a result, the historic Carlisle State Brewery closed and somne Theakston's beers moved to Brown's subsidiay Workington wery in Cumbria. S&N closed all the Brown brewries and moved Theakston's Best Bittr to the Tyne Brewry in Newcastle. Tyne closed in 2004 and the beer then transferred to John Smiths in Tadcaster. S&N, including John Smiths, is now owned by Heineken.