Owners of the brewery, Asahi, said it was unable to comment on “individual cases” and was unable to confirm the removal of the Dark Star MD.
A spokesman for the company said: “As part of our standard business processes we continually review our operations to ensure we have the right structures and capabilities in place for brewing and brand success, however, we do not comment on individual cases.”
However, The Morning Advertiser understands that Cuthbertson is now leaving the business as of this Friday 14 June. Cuthbertson, when asked about his move, said: “No comment.”
Instrumental in sale
Cuthbertson took over the role of MD in 2017, having previously worked within the business as communications director.
He was instrumental in the sale of the Sussex-based brewer to Fuller’s in February 2018, and was retained as MD of the business following the acquisition.
Asahi acquired Dark Star as part of the purchase of Fuller’s, announced in January this year.
Dark Star was originally founded in 1994, brewing in the basement of the Evening Star pub in Brighton.
20,000 barrels a year
In 2001, the company moved operations to Ansty, West Sussex, before finally moving to its present site in Partridge Green, West Sussex, producing around 20,000 barrels a year.
During the years, the company has built up a strong following in the local area, with great support for its iconic brew, Hophead.
The brewery even went on to open a number of pubs, including the Anchor Tap in Horsham, and the Lockhart Tavern in Haywards Heath, working in partnership with Heath Ball, operator of the Great British Pub of the Year, the Red Lion & Sun in Highgate, north London.
The brewery’s popularity and growth within the on-trade led to interest from Fuller’s and the subsequent purchase.