Dark Star MD leaves to join Bedlam as brewer plans £500k crowdfunding

By Daniel Woolfson

- Last updated on GMT

Paul Reed: move was on the cards "for some while"
Paul Reed: move was on the cards "for some while"

Related tags Beer

Dark Star's managing director of sixteen years has left the company to join Sussex brewer Bedlam on the eve of Bedlam's campaign to crowdfund a new brewery. 

Paul Reed joins Bedlam Brewery as joint managing director. He will share responsibilities with Bedlam founder Dominic Worrall.

Reed told The Morning Advertiser (MA)​: “It’s been on the cards for some while. It’s been very much my style at Dark Star to give people a lot of freedom and autonomy in the way they manage the business.

“Over the past year or so I’ve been rather superfluous – we’ve got excellent operations guys, on the marketing side, excellent head brewing team and I felt it was overdue for another challenge.

“I probably am old enough to retire but mentally I don’t want to, hence the conversation with Bedlam.

Grow the business

“I just want to build on what’s already there – I want to get the already-enthusiastic team even more enthusiastic and if I can just nudge them a little bit to the left or to the right to grow the business with consistent quality I will be happy.”

Bedlam will launch a Crowdcube campaign on Monday with the aim of raising £500k to finance relocating the brewery to a new site.

Roughly 30% of the business will be offered up and the campaign will run for 30 days.


Bedlam's Worrall told MA:​ “This will facilitate us to build a state of the art brewery. The new location is very close to where we are, it’s rural and it’s able to enhance all of the credentials that Bedlam is built on so far.

“Not only is it bigger and more practical but we will be brewing entirely off solar energy, we will be able to grow more hops and we will be able to grow our own barley for the first time which is very exciting.

“It’s what we do but more of the same.”

Reed added: “We just want to spread the ownership of Bedlam Brewery to as wide and eclectic a bunch of beer lovers as we can.”

The Sussex brewer, whose products include Bedlam Golden Ale, Bedlam IPA, Bedlam Porter and most recently Bedlam Pale (keg), announced earlier this year that its production levels had risen 300%​ since its products were unveiled at Craft Beer Rising.

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