Black Sheep Brewery

Black Sheep Brewery unveil special edition pale ale for Otley Folk Festival


Black Sheep Brewery has unveiled a limited edition Indian Pale Ale (IPA), which has been brewed for the 25th anniversary of a popular Yorkshire music festival.

The Black Sheep Otley Folk Festival will see a host of local, national and international musicians descend on the town between 16-18 September for the three-day long event.

Otley Folk IPA, at 4.5% ABV, has been introduced for the festival’s 25th anniversary and will be available at venues throughout the town hosting festival acts.

Black Sheep Brewery has supported the event since the company’s formation in 1992 – a year after the festival was launched. The 25th anniversary event line-up was unveiled earlier in the summer at the Otley Tap House by Greg Mulholland, the MP for Leeds North West, Paul Theakston, chairman and founder of Black Sheep Brewery and Steve Fairholme, the festival’s organiser.

The festival will see the reunion of many of the original acts who performed at the inaugural Otley Folk Festival in 1991, including Stanley Accrington, Robin Garside, Dave Vermond, Last Orders and Tanglefoot.

Jo Theakston, Sales and Marketing Director at Black Sheep Brewery, said: “We are proud of our long-association with the Otley Folk Festival and we wanted to do something special to mark its landmark anniversary. Otley Folk IPA is the perfect pint to enjoy while watching live music.

“The festival is shaping up to be another fantastic celebration in Otley and will offer a belting atmosphere for locals and visitors to the town throughout the weekend.”

Steve Fairholme said: “The creation of a special beer for the Otley Folk Festival is a great way to mark our 25th anniversary. We are extremely grateful for the continuing support of Black Sheep Brewery and we look forward to raising a pint of Oltey Folk IPA to celebrate the festival.”



CONTACT: Jamie Collis on 01325 363436

Editor’s Notes:

The Black Sheep Brewery in Masham made its first beer in 1992 after being built up by Paul Theakston, whose family had brewed in the area for six generations.

In a world of ever increasing bland, mass-produced beer Paul saw an opportunity to return to what his family had done best since 1827, making real beer in the time-honoured fashion.

An old maltings building, once part of Lightfoot's Brewery became the Brewery’s home. This landmark building, which stands high over the banks of the Ure, had fallen in to disrepair as years of neglect as a semi-redundant grainstore had taken its toll. Paul assembled a small team around him to fight the rats and build a traditional country brewery.

The Black Sheep Brewery name derived from Masham’s association with sheep, but ‘Sheep Brewery’ didn’t quite sound right, so with a little creativity from Paul’s wife the Black Sheep Brewery was born, a name that sat well with the area, spoke volumes about the maverick attitude to the multi-nationals seeking to dominate the brewing industry and captured the essence of the family struggle that led to our birth.

Black Sheep Ale at 4.4% ABV, now in an eco-friendly lightweight bottle, continues to maintain its presence among the top ten premium bottled ale brands, and is available nationwide from virtually all the major supermarket retailers. It is a classic premium bitter and as with all Black Sheep beers, full of character derived from the best possible brewing materials, plenty of time and patience in the brewing and our very special Yorkshire Square fermenters.

In 2014, Black Sheep Best Bitter, - Yorkshire’s best-selling cask ale – underwent a facelift to broaden its appeal among drinkers, evolving the look, while retaining all of the great taste that has made it an iconic brand.

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Steve Fairholme, festival organiser, with Paul Theakston, chairman of Black Sheep Brewery, and Otley Town Councillor Ray Georgeson
Steve Fairholme, festival organiser, with Paul Theakston, chairman of Black Sheep Brewery, and Otley Town Councillor Ray Georgeson
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