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Friday, 8 February, 2002, 15:23 GMT
Last straw for Wrexham drinkers
Hope Street, Wrexham
Locals want to keep the lager in Wrexham
Wrexham shoppers have reacted angrily to news that the town's legendary lager brewery will not be brought back into production.

The Wrexham Lager Beer Company has brewed in the town since 1882 and is Britain's oldest brewery.

But after 118-years in the region, the brands future is uncertain.

Wrexham Lager Brewery
The brewery opened in 1882

Plans by a local consortium to buy the brewing rights from Carlsberg-Tetley have failed.

It is now feared that more than 100 years of history will be poured down the drain.

Peter Lonsdale, 20, believes it is bad news.

"I think it's a shame for Wrexham, it is one of the things that helps define the town must.

"It's a hard decision on the town in general - commerce and that sort of thing could be effected."

Brewery History
1882 Wrexham Brewery opens
1962 Company modernised by Ind Coope
1997 Carlsberg-Tetley announce closure plans
2000 Brewery closes
2001 Plans announced for Wrexham Heritage Brewery
2002 Crunch talks break down

Carlsberg-Tetley closed the site in April 2000, with the loss of 35 jobs.

Since then, the lager has been brewed in Leeds.

Wrexham Consortium, the Phoenix Group have failed to make a deal with the Danish brewing giants which would have seen the lager returned home.

Now the brand will probably cease to exist in three years time.

Peter Lonsdale
Peter Lonsdale: The lager is the town's heritage

Wrexham student Zara Thomas said: "It's not very good because Wrexham lager was a really old company from Wrexham, it was established in the 1800's, it would be a shame if it was lost.

"I think it should be brought back," she added.

Clwyd South MP Martyn Jones has fought a hard battle to save the Welsh brewery.

Oldest Brewery

In October 1999 he approached Carlsberg-Tetley brewers and the local council in an effort to preserve the local production of Wrexham Lager as a heritage centre.

But it was not to be and on the 7 April 2000, the brewery closed its doors for the last time.

Just under 12 months later, the Wrexham consortium had negotiated exclusive brewing rights for the brand with Carlsberg-Tetley.

Despite, meetings at the House of Commons and the help of politicians the deal broke down.

It now looks likely that time has finally been called on Britain's oldest brewery.

See also:

08 Feb 02 | Wales
12 Feb 01 | Wales
24 Jan 02 | Wales
02 Aug 00 | Wales
07 Apr 00 | Wales
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