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19th October 2017

Black Sheep Brewery founder ‘marks’ 25th anniversary celebrations

Paul Theakston, Founder of Black Sheep Brewery

Paul Theakston, the iconic founder of Black Sheep Brewery, is leaving his mark on the brewery’s 25th anniversary celebrations as Black Sheep Special Ale returns to the region’s pubs with a limited edition pump clip.

Paul, who founded the brewery in 1992, will hand sign each commemorative pump clip for Special Ale, which was the brewery’s second ever beer, following on from Black Sheep Best Bitter.

It has remained one of the brewery’s strong cask brands as a full flavoured, premium cask ale.

At 4.4% ABV, Black Sheep Special Ale is brewed with Challenger and Progress hops, with Maris Otter malted barley and Crystal Malt, to deliver a consistently rich flavour and darker colour.

The launch marks the second time in Black Sheep’s 25th anniversary year that Paul Theakston has featured in the brewery’s celebrations, as he was immortalised in the form of a figurine tap handle when Pathmaker, a brew named in his honour, was made available to pubs and bars in March.

Jo Theakston, Sales and Marketing Director at Black Sheep Brewery, said: “Black Sheep Special Ale has grown to become one of our flagship brews and has remained popular since Dad created it. Over the course of the year we’ve been looking at ways to give back to our loyal customers and pub trade partners, and Special Ale has proven to be a well-received beer that deserved a special personal touch in honour of our 25 years.

“Together with the Pathmaker figurines, the limited edition pump clips will make for a real collector’s item and a good talking point at the bar.”

Paul Theakston added: “Offering a personal touch has always remained at the heart of our ambitions since Black Sheep was established, and this is another initiative to say thank you to each and every person that has contributed to what we have achieved over the last 25 years.”


CONTACT: Jamie Collis on 01325 363436

Editor’s Notes:

The Black Sheep Brewery in Masham made its first beer in 1992 after being built up by Paul Theakston, whose family had brewed in the area for six generations.

In a world of ever increasing bland, mass-produced beer Paul saw an opportunity to return to what his family had done best since 1827, making real beer in the time-honoured fashion.

An old maltings building, once part of Lightfoot’s Brewery became the Brewery’s home. This landmark building, which stands high over the banks of the Ure, had fallen in to disrepair as years of neglect as a semi-redundant grainstore had taken its toll. Paul assembled a small team around him to fight the rats and build a traditional country brewery.

The Black Sheep Brewery name derived from Masham’s association with sheep, but ‘Sheep Brewery’ didn’t quite sound right, so with a little creativity from Paul’s wife the Black Sheep Brewery was born, a name that sat well with the area, spoke volumes about the maverick attitude to the multi-nationals seeking to dominate the brewing industry and captured the essence of the family struggle that led to our birth.

Black Sheep Ale at 4.4% ABV, now in an eco-friendly lightweight bottle, continues to maintain its presence among the top ten premium bottled ale brands, and is available nationwide from virtually all the major supermarket retailers. It is a classic premium bitter and as with all Black Sheep beers, full of character derived from the best possible brewing materials, plenty of time and patience in the brewing and our very special Yorkshire Square fermenters.

In 2014, Black Sheep Best Bitter, – Yorkshire’s best-selling cask ale – underwent a facelift to broaden its appeal among drinkers, evolving the look, while retaining all of the great taste that has made it an iconic brand.