Owners of a historic Liverpool brewery have said they are "delighted" that its pub takeover has won financial backing from its prospective customers.
Cains is the official beer of Liverpool's Capital of Culture
It is thought to be the first time the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) Members Investment Club has bought so much of a regional beer business so quickly.
Shares in Honeycombe, a Lancashire pub operator, have soared since the deal with the Cains brewery was announced.
The owners said: "It feels like an army of beer-lovers has endorsed our plans."
Camra's investment club has taken a share worth £240,000 in Honeycombe, based in Preston, ahead of a takeover by Cains.
The brewery has been part of Liverpool's history since 1850.
'A few pints'
Cains will combine its award-winning beers with about 100 pubs in the North West after the takeover on 7 June.
Camra said it wanted to support the "exciting development".
Cains joint managing director, Sudarghara Dusanj, said: "The CAMRA Members Investment Club are beer connoisseurs, so it feels like an army of beer lovers has endorsed our plans.
"It is fantastic to know that a significant chunk of the business is in the hands of people who share our passion and belief that beer is the hero.
"I am sure that they will want to continue to support us by drinking a few pints of Cains in the new pub estate as well."
The group's investment club has about £12m invested in real ale brewers, including £1m-plus stakes in Adams, Greene King and Marston's.