Bridgnorth has a history of Breweries stemming back to the Eaves Brewery (aka Castle Brewery) the first recorded brewery in 1821 renowned at the time for its Cave Beer.
Today the Hop & Stagger Brewery at The White Lion still brew cask ales.
The Castle Brewery ( aka Eaves)
The first known Bridgnorth brewery was the Castle Brewery (also recorded as Eaves Brewery) and is recorded by a traveller in 1658 and by Rev. Cornes of St. Leonard in 1726. An entry in“A History of Bridgnorth from 1821” stated:
“On the South side of the passage (alluding to the Stoneway Steps) there is a large cave in the rock, remarkable for being the repository of that excellent beer formerly sold and so much esteemed in London, by the name of Cave Beer. At the entrance of the cave stood a lion, rampant carved in stone, and within there was a large vessel or tun, bestrided by a small Bacchus, and contained about five hogsheads, or three hundred and twenty gallons.”
Eaves Cave Beer, a strong dark ale, became extremely popular and was exported as far as France and brought much business and trade to Bridgnorth.
When the brewery ceased the caves became 13 or 14 dwellings for the poor.
Wilsons Brewery Bridgnorth
Wilson’s Brewery was on the Cartway in 1880 , founded by Richard Wilson, famous for Wilson’s Celebrated Nut Brown Ale, it closed in the early 19th century.
It is also recorded an Artesian Well was bored 75 feet through the sandstone and its water became renowned for its good brewing properties.
The Worfield Brewery
The Worfield Brewery starting out at the Davenport Arms (The Dog) in Worfield, the brewery moved to Hollybush Lane in Bridgnorth and then moved to Madeley. It is now known as the Shire brewery and brews at the All Nations pub.
The Bridgnorth Brewing Company
Bridgnorth Brewing Company was originally set up in March 2007 by brewer Andrew Brough with directors Richard Beaman and Simon Lucas. It was situated next to the Kings Head and Stable Bar in the centre of Bridgnorth. It brewed ales such as Bridgnorth Best Bitter, Apley Ale, Bishop Percy, Old Mo, Northgate Gold , Westgate Winter Warmer and Rowley’s Honey Ale made using Rowley’s Shropshire honey which is produced on Shipley Farm in Pattingham.
Clipper Brewery Bridgnorth At The Bell & Talbot
Built in an original 19th century Bridgnorth Brewhouse in 2013 it produced 81 gallons of cask conditioned ales a week. There were two ales currently in production a Pale Ale brewed from pale malt and American Amarillo hops; and a darker Special Ale brewed from a mixture of pale and dark malt with a British traditional Goldings hop. The brewery ceased brewing in December 2014.
Hop & Stagger Brewery Bridgnorth At The White Lion
In December 2012 Bob and Sam Hayes from the White Lion, in West Castle Street set up the Hop & Stagger Brewery at the rear of the pub. Two of their regular beers are Golden Wander and High Town Ale.
Other past recorded Bridgnorth Breweries is a brewery in the stables at the rear of the Golden Lion on the High Street.
Bridgnorth as has a long history of Maltsters whose job it was to prepare the malt that is used in the process of brewing.
Recorded in 1828 these included
- B Boucher – Hungary Street
- T Bangham – High town
- John Brown – High town
- T Corser – Hungary Street
- W Corser – High Street
- Joseph Evans – High Street
- T Eveson – Raven Street
- B Lloyd – Low town
- T Milner – High town
- T Oakes – Low town
- Francis Oakes – High Town
- John Roe – High town
- James Shipman – High Street
- John Sing – Low town
- B Spilsbury – High Street
- John Steven – Low town
Now Find Out About The History Of Bridgnorth Inns & Public Houses