JW Lees to strengthen range with three new beers

By James Beeson

- Last updated on GMT

Efforts doubled: the rebranded JW Lees core range will be released on 20 November
Efforts doubled: the rebranded JW Lees core range will be released on 20 November

Related tags Jw lees Beer

Sixth generation family brewer JW Lees has announced three new beers, a series of collaborations with Manchester brewers and a rebrand of its core range.

The company, which owns more than 140 pubs and hotels across the north-west of England and north Wales, says the plans are the biggest shake-up of its range in 190 years.

The rebranded core range will be released on 20 November, with the three new beers being introduced over the following months. The brewery has also confirmed that the recipes for its cask ales such as JW Lees Bitter, Manchester Pale Ale and Moonraker won’t change. 

New microbrewery plans

The brewery’s plans for 2018 also include the building of a microbrewery at its brewery site in Middleton; a new series of collaborations with Manchester brewers; and a range of five seasonal ales celebrating pioneers who have helped shape Manchester and the north-west.

The three new beers are a craft lager, a stout and a golden ale, which will be released in November, January and March respectively.

Manchester Craft Lager – a 4.7% ABV lager made with Saaz and Celeia hops – will launch in every JW Lees managed house on 20 November.

Bucking the trend in cask

JW Lees managing direct William Lees-Jones said; “We’re putting brewing at the heart of the business. We’ll continue to buck the trend that sees declining cask sales by doubling our efforts. The new branding will undoubtedly generate excitement from our customers but for longer lasting growth, we need to keep invigorating the range.

“From small-batch collaborations to a new craft lager, the emphasis is on giving customers what they want and inspiring them with beers that they wouldn’t necessarily expect from a traditional family brewer.”

JW Lees is a sixth-generation family business that now employs just over 1,100 people, including 965 in its 36 managed pubs, inns and hotels.

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