Shropshire Star

Award-winning Shropshire brewery set to celebrate 30 years of success

An award-winning brewery – founded by a father and son team – is set to celebrate its 30th anniversary this year.

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Founders Nick and Jim Davis

Founders of Hobsons Brewery – Nick Davis and his dad Jim – say they are 'immensely proud' of their achievements in helping to grow the business to a team of more than 20 people after coming through challenges such as the pandemic.

The pair founded the brewery, based in Cleobury Mortimer, in 1993 – and it’s been brewing a range of ales in bottle, keg and cask ever since.

Commercial success has followed and has seen it expand its online presence across the UK and overseas.

Nick said: “I can't help but feel an immense sense of pride and gratitude as we celebrate our 30th anniversary.

"Over the years, we've faced our fair share of challenges, especially the pandemic, which dealt our industry an unprecedented hand and forced us to adapt our selling model.

"It also prompted us to invest in our website and explore selling via Amazon, which is now a significant part of our business.

"Of course, the current cost-of-living crisis and rise in energy prices are also having a huge impact on our industry.

"But we are fortunate enough to have the support of sustainable technology such as a ground source heat pump, a wind turbine and solar panels. Nevertheless, it has called for resilience across our industry.”

The pair first decided to start brewing in the early 1990s, when, at the time, Jim was running a pub in Somerset and Nick was working as a licensed property surveyor.

Upon Hobsons’ official launch, its first cask beer, ‘Best Bitter’, entered the local pub scene — which is still proudly brewed today.

In 2007, ‘Champion Mild’ was crowned CAMRA’s ‘Champion Beer of Britain’ at the 30th Great British Beer Festival.

Hobsons also sits at the forefront of sustainable technologies, with its green thinking earning it the SIBA Green Business Award in 2010 and again in 2021.

The installation of an onsite wind turbine in 2009 kickstarted its commitment to finding more ways to be green, from bottle labels made from waste wood pulp from the paper-making process to wooden pump clips.

Last month, the brewery also won the ‘Commercial Achievement Award’ at the 2023 SIBA Business Awards, which shined a light on its continued e-commerce efforts and its impressive Amazon sales amidst the pandemic.

Nick added: “There have been so many memorable moments along the way, including a variety of award wins.

"These accolades showed that being sustainable for Hobsons isn’t just a tick box exercise, it’s a culture.

"We wouldn't be where we are today without the amazing Hobsons team, which is now 23 people strong.

"A particular highlight for me is Charlie Edwards, one of our team, becoming the first national brewing apprentice, after starting with Hobsons part-time not long after leaving school.

"He is now assistant brewing manager and a shining example of how powerful apprenticeships can be. We have a young team at Hobsons and are always looking to encourage the next generation of talent.”

He added: “We are immensely grateful for the people who drink our beer and appreciate what we do. Their feedback, enthusiasm and loyalty have been a constant source of motivation for us and we have built a fantastic community around our brewery. Here's to the next 30 years and all the great beer still to come!"