Brewery toasts more success after opening its 40th pub

A growing pubs chain has reached a milestone after opening its 40th site.

Black Country Ales has bought The Railway Tavern in Upper Bar, Newport, Shropshire.

The pub will close for a five-figure refurbishment early in the new year and reopen as a BCA real ale establishment.

Managing director Angus McMeeking said: "It will be a pub with no gimmicks – just good beer and a good choice of beers."

Pensnett-based BCA, which is in its 21st year, is also selling its beer, including Bradley's Finest Golden, Fireside Bitter and Pig on the Wall, in bottles, for the first time through its website.

BCA's 38th pub, The Starving Rascal, in Brettell Lane, Amblecote, Stourbridge, is also on track to open on December 17 in time for Christmas.

The pub, claimed to be Britain's most haunted pub, is currently being refurbished.

Mr McMeeking said: "We are excited because it is a really nice pub."

The 200-year-old pub was originally built in the early 1800s and opened as The Dudley Arms.

However, it is believed in the early 20th century a tragic set of circumstances led the pub to become haunted by a local beggar.

On a freezing cold night, a ‘rascal’ is said to have asked the landlord for food and water, but he refused.

The man then lay down for the night in the doorway of the pub and was found dead in the same spot the next morning.

It was in 1977 the pub was given its now iconic name to reflect its history and over the years it has been regularly used for paranormal research.

BCA's 39th pub is The Harp Hotel, in Albrighton, which is also undergo a complete refurbishment before it reopens in the new year.

It was bought for an undisclosed sum from Hopback Brewery.

All of the chain's pubs offer BCA’s own beers and a range of guest ales.

The business has its head office at Pensnett Trading Estate, in Kingswinford, and brews its beer at the Old Bull's Head in Lower Gornal.

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