A brewery at the heart of Bury St Edmunds is turning the clock back as they celebrate a milestone brewing anniversary.
The Old Cannon Brewery, on Cannon Street, celebrates 15 years since it started brewing on the premises on 3rd December. It is also 15 years since the establishment changed its name from St Edmunds Head to the Old Cannon Brewery, when new owners took on the lease.
Current landlords Hannah and Garry Clark have invited regulars from 1999 to a special celebratory evening in the brewery, where they will also be turning back the clock and offering all Old Cannon bears at 1999 prices of £1.99 per pint.
The brewery has undergone a multitude of changes and improvements since 1999.
As well as the commencement of brewing on the premises, there is now a brasserie and a range of self-contained bed and breakfast lodgings on site. Old Cannon beers available have gone from two, to the current range of 11, which are available to buy from the brewery, but also in nearby locations such as the Suffolk Food Hall and Ipswich pubs The Dove and the Fat Cat.
Hannah said of the anniversary: ”The Old Cannon has changed so much in the last 15 years we wanted to have a night of reminiscing as a way of celebrating how far we’ve come. We’re excited to see some old faces and are delighted to be able to offer guests the chance to sample our beers at the price they would have paid in 1999. We’ll also be blowing candles out on a cake to celebrate 15 years as The Old Cannon Brewery.”
Two large brewing vessels have stood in the corner of the Old Cannon since 1999, and have brewed just under 1,222,000 pints in that time.
Richard Eyton Jones, who has head brewer in 1999 when the building was brought back to life after 5 years of been derelict remembers it with great affection:
“Right from the first day of opening the brewery was always busy, the people of Bury St Edmunds were really captivated by the idea of brewing on site; it was quite a unique concept then. Friday nights were especially busy and we had a steady group of regulars who always supported us.
“I remember fondly celebrating the Millennium in the brewery – our first New Years Eve since re-opening – with a fantastic black tie event which was a complete sell out.
“Our tenure also saw the halving of duty rates which had a massive impact on the industry and which paved the way for the multitudes of micro-breweries that have appeared on the scene in the last 15 years.”
Everyone is welcome to the anniversary celebrations on the evening of Wednesday 3rd December.