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Happy Birthday BTB
A YEAR FULL OF BEAUTIFUL BEER AND MORE
This week marks the one year anniversary of the first Broad Town Brewery brew, Fettlers Finest being released. I’d like to take a few moments to review the year, and what a year it has been!
Speaking from a personal point of view, the journey has been incredible and we are so happy that you have joined us on our adventure. I can wax lyrical about all of the beers we have created, about the quality and love that goes into each and every last drop, however, I feel we talk about that a lot and hopefully you will agree that every beer has been fantastic. So instead, I am going to pay homage here to Jason, his vision, his work ethic and his steadfast and frankly daring commitment to making this brewery what it is. (he probably wont thank me for this).
To own and run a business at the best of times is challenging, draining and uplifting in equal measure, to do so in the eye of a storm such as a global pandemic will only amplify this.
A year ago, Jason completed hand building the brew house and I am not sure he knew back then just how important the business would become. Jason set about brewing at weekends, spending long evenings after his day job bottling by hand with Vinch, Labeling each bottle and then delivering them all over the local area on his own. The quality of the beer produced quickly meant that demand was outstripping supply.
The success of the brewery also started to attract attention further afield most notably the attention of Nathan, our brewer. The pandemic had seen a sudden slow down in the brewing industry and Nathan had been furloughed from his brewing job at the time, but he also saw an opportunity with a new up and coming brewery so dropped a CV in to Jason, The pair immediately hit it off and after a long chat, Jason decided to take a gamble and bring Nathan on full time. As gambles go, it was a pretty good one and Nathan has worked hard to create a stable of beers that deliver on flavour, quality and carry the DNA of Broad Town Brewery.
In March of last year, I was working as a project manager in the hospitality industry. Building commercial kitchens and dining facilities all over the country. As we approached the first lockdown the company I worked for saw it’s turnover drop by 70% overnight and the only course of action they could possibly take ws to put myself and hundreds of others on Furlough. It became more and more apparent over the coming weeks that life as we knew it would not return to normal quite as quickly as we all first thought and as a result I was made redundant from my role in August.
At the time, Jason and I were in talks about the future of the brewery, I had become a kind of self appointed consultant, mainly because I love beer and well, Jason had rather a lot of it. During those chats I could see Jasons passion for the brewery shining through, the enthusiasm he had for the product and for what we felt a brewery could achieve with a focus on the customer journey was something we shared in common. In another of Jasons now legendary gambles, he appointed me as Operations Manager. At this point I want to be absolutely clear, that changed my life and that of my families. It was a huge gamble, whilst the brewery was showing signs of growth, realistically it was probably a few months away from being able to make that appointment. For me, there was no prospect of returning to work in the hospitality industry and as droves of people had also been retrenched, the job market was more competitive than it has ever been. So, Jasons courage and belief in me pretty much saved me from a prolonged, anxious and agonising hiatus from the work place.
My point is, Jason has stood up when others have run for cover, he has steadfastly backed us and given us the trust and belief to go on and achieve. He has fostered a work ethic and culture that breeds passion and creativity and he has built by hand from the ground up, a brewery that we are incredibly proud of, a brewery that has created jobs and will continue to do so, a brewery with big ambitions but without compromising on the philosophy of quality, quality, quality.
So this first year of brewing beautiful beers for you is down to Jason Bayliffe and his unrelenting work ethic and passion.
So Cheers Jason. Here’s to a glorious summer!