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Last Updated: Friday, 10 September, 2004, 08:13 GMT 09:13 UK
Drinkers revive Boddingtons fight
Boddingtons Brewery, Manchester
The closure would put more than 50 people out work
The Campaign For Real Ale (Camra) has pledged to fight plans to close Manchester's Boddingtons brewery.

Camra is resurrecting its Boddingtons Action Group to oppose Interbrew's decision to switch production to Lancashire, Scotland and Wales.

"We're appalled at this decision," said Camra's chief executive Mike Benner, adding that Interbrew was "riding roughshod over British brewing".

The Belgian firm plans to move cask brewing to another site in Manchester.

The Boddingtons Action Group was set up in 1989 to fight the takeover of the former family firm by Whitbread, itself taken over by Interbrew in 2000.

Beer drinkers in Manchester are not going to take this lying down
Steven Prescott, Camra
Mr Benner said: "So many family and regional brewers are performing well by concentrating on strong real ale brands, yet the powerful global brewers seem intent on taking over the world with global brands and just fiddling around with their real ales."

And Camra's regional director for Greater Manchester, Steven Prescott, said: "Beer drinkers in Manchester are not going to take this lying down.

"Interbrew's own marketing for Boddingtons links it with Manchester, so to close the Strangeways brewery is a strange move indeed."

Unique taste

Interbrew said it has no alternative but to shut the brewery next year, cutting 55 jobs and moving production to Samlesbury, Lancashire, Magor in south Wales, and Glasgow.

Interbrew hopes to move cask production to the Hydes brewery in Moss Side, Manchester.

Its chief executive Steve Cahillane said on Thursday: "It is just not sustainable to continue brewing keg ales at Boddingtons and then transport them to our other brewery sites for packaging when those sites already have the brewing capacity in place."

Boddingtons has been brewed in the city since 1778 and its brewery in Strangeways, just north of the city centre, is one of Manchester's best-known landmarks.

It uses water from wells 200 feet below the brewery and Camra claims it will be impossible to replicate the beer's taste elsewhere.

Bitter end at Boddingtons brewery
09 Sep 04  |  Manchester
Manchester fights to keep its cream
04 Nov 02  |  Business
Union plans over Boddingtons' move
02 Oct 02  |  England


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