Real Ale youth campaigner supports George Osborne’s plan to pump new life into Manchester’s beer industry

By Neil Robertson

George Osborne’s plan to get more young people into the brewing industry has been supported by a leading figure from Greater Manchester’s Campaign For Real Ale.

Mr Osborne’s plan is part of a series of propositions he has made in order to revive the brewing and pub industries.

The praise comes after the Chancellor announced in last month’s Budget that the beer tax escalator, which inflated the price of beer, would be scrapped.

Andrew Rodbourne, Regional Young Persons Co-ordinator for the Greater Manchester branch of CAMRA, has spoken out in favour of Mr Osborne’s plans.

“I think it’s fantastic that the government are introducing these kinds of measures,” he said.

“Any young people looking to get a long-term career in the pub industry will only benefit from this.”

Mr Rodbourne emphasised the need for everyone in the region’s brewing industry to pull together to help young people become successful brewers.

 “It’s great that this is coming forward, but there needs to be input from everyone to try and stimulate in this area – not just from the Chancellor,” he said.

“Everyone needs to work together now to try and get more young people fascinated and interested in the brewing industry.

“Hopefully these young people will be leading pubs and breweries to success in the future.”

But it would seem that Mr Rodbourne’s opinion is not shared by everyone.

Scott Davies, owner of specialist beer shop Beermoth in the Northern Quarter, is sceptical about the Chancellor’s proposals to get young people into brewing.

“I doubt it, I think it’s just talk,” he said.

Mr Davies suggested that the age of brewers was irrelevant, and that having passion for the job was the most important thing. 

“From our point of view, it’s people that are enthusiastic about brewing that should be in the industry, not young people necessarily.”

He added: “I think there are enough beer fanatics out there. That’s why the CAMRA Beer Festival was run by volunteers, because people love it and they want to help it.

“The brewing industry shouldn’t be different to any other industry.”

Mr Davies warned against the dangers of transforming the brewing industry into something solely aimed at young people.

He said: “It just turns it into a factory set-up of making what you’re told and not learning about brewing independently.” 

Photo courtesy of avlxyz, with thanks.

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