York Brewery goes into administration – three pubs also hit

Uncertain times for York Brewery. Photographs: Richard McDougall
13 Dec 2018 @ 2.27 pm
| Business, Food & drink

York Brewery has gone into administration, YorkMix can reveal today.

Parent company Mitchells Of Lancaster (Brewers) Ltd have been put into administration, taking York Brewery Co Ltd with it.

Staff at the Toft Green brewery were told this morning. It also owns three pubs in the city which are affected.

A brewery spokesman told YorkMix:

  • All I can confirm at the moment is we are in administration.

    As of the minute it’s business as usual. We just got told this morning so it’s all a bit new to us as well.

Employs dozens in York

Uncertain times for York Brewery. Photographs: Richard McDougall
A company is put into administration when it has become insolvent – and doesn’t have the money to pay its debts.

When that happens the company is put under the management of licensed insolvency practitioner, in this case Duff & Phelps of Manchester.

Once in administration, a moratorium is placed on legal action against the company by creditors.

Administrators then make plans to rescue the business, for example by selling it on as a going concern.

York Brewery is still brewing and supplying its customers, including pubs and supermarkets.

It employs about 20 people at the Toft Green brewery. There are about another 30 people employed at the York Brewery pubs.

Pub owner

Mitchells of Lancaster put up one of the York Brewery pubs – the Yorkshire Terrier – up for sale in September.

At the time Jonathan Barker, managing director of Mitchell’s of Lancaster, told YorkMix: “The Terrier is indeed for sale as we concluded that whilst it has been a York Brewery pub for many years we felt that we had taken it as far as we could and that it no longer fitted our requirements.”

Yorkshire Terrier on Stonegate

As well as the Yorkshire Terrier Mitchell’s owns The Last Drop Inn on Colliergate and the Three Legged Mare on High Petergate.

It runs the Tap Room at the Toft Green brewery as well as Foley’s Tap House in Leeds.

And Mitchell’s owns another eight pubs in Lancashire.

The York Brewery story

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York Brewery opened in May 1996 – the first brewery within the city walls for 40 years.

It was the brainchild of Tony Thomson and Tony Smith. It went on win national awards for its beers.

Pubs followed, with The Last Drop Inn on Colliergate the first, followed by The Three Legged Mare and Rook & Gaskill on Lawrence Street.

Mitchell’s of Lancaster bought the brewery in December 2008, pledging to expand brewing capacity to 150 barrels a week, and open a further six to ten York Brewery pubs.