All hail the ale! Pubs and breweries raise a glass to CAMRA success

Landlord Chris Hartley at The Polished Knob, Todmorden, celebrates getting in the CAMRA Guide 2013.
Landlord Chris Hartley at The Polished Knob, Todmorden, celebrates getting in the CAMRA Guide 2013.

FIVE pubs and three breweries in the upper Calder Valley are raising a glass to toast their entries in the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) Good Beer Guide 2013.

The Stubbing Wharf, in Hebden Bridge, and Todmorden pubs The Polished Knob and the Staff of Life are celebrating winning approval from beer drinkers.

Little Valley Brewery, in Cragg Vale; Bridestones, in Blackshaw Head; and Barearts Brewery in Todmorden have also made it into the Camra guide.

Matthew Browne, who runs the Stubbing Wharf, said: “We’re extremely pleased. We have been in it now for three or four years and managed to stay in it.

“We always have three rotating guest beers, as well as three regulars and a lot of real ciders.

“It’s great to be in and we do support CAMRA where we can and real ales.”

Tim Fritchley, who runs the Staff of Life, said the mention in the guide was unexpected.

“It feels very good,” he said. “It was nice for them to recognise that we do good beers.

“We are growing. We just go by word of mouth.

“We try to give people what they want. It seems to be working well.”

Sue Cooper, who jointly owns the Little Valley Brewery, said: “We are in it every year and it’s a good thing because it helps promote our business. It also supports businesses producing real ale.”

Barearts has double reason to celebrate as it has also been included in the Good Bottled Beer Guide.

Trevor Cook, who owns the brewery with his wife Kathryn, said: “People read it and come to try our beers. They come from all over.”

He said Barearts has been in the Good Beer Guide since the brewery was established in 2005 and its shop was also included in the guide in 2010.

Dan Tasker, who owns Bridestones Brewery, said: “I love being included in the guide. It’s a good thing to be in and it shows that we obviously produce good beer.”

Staff at The Polished Knob said they were happy to be included in the Camra guide and hope it helps to attract even more people to the pub.

The recognition of the quality ales on offer in the upper Calder Valley comes as a boost to the area, which has suffered a difficult summer due to several floods.

Two pubs which are currently closed following the flooding - Moyles in Hebden Bridge and the Shoulder of Mutton in Mytholmroyd - have also been included in the Good Beer Guide.