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Butcombe Brewery plans to reach 100 sites

By James Wallin

- Last updated on GMT

Butcombe's The Pelican, Chew Magna - looking to add bedrooms
Butcombe's The Pelican, Chew Magna - looking to add bedrooms

Related tags: Somerset, Beer, Mendip

Butcombe Brewery has announced plans to grow by up to 100 sites over the next five years as its parent company edges closer to securing new backers.

The south-west-based brewer and pub operator, which is owned by Liberation Group, announced the addition of two freehold sites to its currently 19-strong estate of managed and tenanted pubs. 

It has acquired the Pelican Inn at Chew Magna and the Charlton in Shepton Mallet, both in Somerset, from individual vendors.

The group said this was the first stage in a planned spate of acquisitions between now and 2021, with the goal of adding up to 20 pubs in each of those years.

Parent company Liberation Group, the Channel Islands-based brewer and pub operator, are understood to be close to securing new backers. LGV Capital, which acquired the business in 2008, has agreed a deal with its preferred bidder after four firms were shortlisted after the first round, MCA understands.

Butcombe said the Pelican would trade in its current form and with existing staff for the moment but that there were plans to grow the existing business through renovation and the creation of additional bedrooms. The Charlton will go directly into the group’s tenanted estate.

The twin purchases are the first Butcombe has completed since it was acquired by Liberation in January 2015. Since then it has undergone a period of consolidation with eight pubs transferred from the managed to the tenanted division, a new managing director appointed and a re-alignment of the brewing business under the stewardship of Stuart Howe.

The group has also carried out a series of investments, including a £400,000 renovation at the Mill at Rode, near Frome in Somerset.

Butcombe managing director Geraint Williams said: “We have been brewing some of the best UK beer since the 1970s and we have built a new team to drive the business forward.

"It is very important to us not to lose the character for which we are known and loved across our heartland. Our beer is what makes us who we are and is at the core of everything we do. Having a modern, well-invested pub portfolio is obviously important because we want our customers to enjoy our products in the best surroundings.”

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