Newcastle University students aiming to make beer a class act

Students at Newcastle University are set to join the brewing boom by launching a micro-brewery supplied with their own hops

Brothers Matt Fawson (left) and Garry Fawson of Mordue Brewery
Brothers Matt Fawson (left) and Garry Fawson of Mordue Brewery

From plot to pint is the business plan for a new venture which will swell the brewing boom in the North East.

Students at Newcastle University are to launch a micro-brewery and plan to supply it with home-grown hops.

The venture comes after North Shields-based Mordue Brewery’s Workie Ticket won the national best bitter title at the Great British Beer Festival at London’s Olympia, as reported in yesterday’s Journal. Stu Brew, run by and for students, is designed to be a sustainable, environmentally-friendly ale-producing business.

It was welcomed yesterday by Mordue managing director Garry Fawson, who said: “It’s a great idea.

“The North East is a fantastic centre of brewing excellence and we are happy to offer any help and advice.”

Funded through the National Union of Students (NUS) Student Green Fund, Stu Brew will be growing its own organic hops at the students’ community allotment and the university’s Rupert’s Wood site in Northumberland.

The first student-run brewery in the country, Stu Brew will be led by the Newcastle University Student Union (NUSU) Green Guerrilla Social Enterprise project which markets and sells student-grown produce back to students and university staff.

Bob Milan, who manages the NUSU community action projects and will be overseeing the setting up of the brewery, said they hoped to have their first samples ready early in the new year.

“We are really excited about launching this venture and hope lots of students will want to get involved,” said Bob.

“We already have the poly tunnels in place at our community allotment and also at Rupert’s Wood, ready for growing the hops, and we’ve rented a disused barn which will be converted into the brewery over the next few weeks.

“This is a first for all of us involved so we don’t know yet what our beer will turn out like, but we’re determined it will be good and made with the very best ingredients and a lot of enthusiasm.

“The aim is to set up the university’s first brewing society alongside the project to give students a real understanding and ownership of the project.”

The micro-brewery is one of seven environmental and sustainability initiatives given the go-ahead following a £269,341 cash injection through the National Union of Students’ Green Fund.


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