KIRKSTALL Brewery is embarking on a major expansion project as staff and regulars at the pub which showcases its ales celebrate a double success.
The Kirkstall Bridge Inn – which was relaunched as Kirkstall Brewery’s first pub just 18 months ago – has been named as Leeds Campaign for Real Ale’s pub of the year for the second year running.
The honour comes as the Kirkstall Road-based brewery, which opened three years ago, starts work on converting the former milk distribution centre at 100, Kirkstall Road.
The new brewery site, which is set to create up to ten new jobs when it starts operating by the end of this year, will allow the brewery to produce eight times more than the current 17,000 pints a week.
A new bar and brewery shop are also to be built at the site.
John Kelly, Kirkstall Brewery sales director, said: “We are very proud of the pub and we like to use it as a showcase for our beers and some of the American and European craft beers we import.”
He added: “We are building a much bigger brewery at another site further down Kirkstall Road. It’s an ambitious conversion project and we look forward to showing everyone the results later in the year.”
The Kirkstall Bridge Inn landlord Ian Forster, said: “It is nice to be recognised for the hard work we put in. All our customers love the place. The pub is a hidden gem, it’s easily missed, we haven’t got a pub sign at the minute.”
Mike Hampshire, chairman of Leeds CAMRA, said: “It is a real traditional pub. The architecture is fantastic and it has got a historical feel to it.
“The staff are really welcoming and all round it’s a great pub.”
A presentation evening will be held at the pub on Wednesday July 15.