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The Black Sheep Story

The Black Sheep Story

The story of Black Sheep Brewery began when Paul Theakston’s family brewery, T&R Theakston, was sold to a national brewer. It was troubling times for the brewing industry, with swathes of smaller, regional breweries being forced to close or being sold to the ‘Big Six’.

Paul, refusing to see five generations of brewing leave Masham, took a daring leap into the unknown, resolving to build his own brewery. Cobbling together salvaged equipment from closed breweries and locating a site in Masham’s former Maltings, he created the original brewhouse, which is still in use today. The brewery, with its iconic branded frontage, can be seen upon entering Masham, standing proud as a bastion of brewing in the Yorkshire Dales.

Leaving the Theakston family business and setting up his own made Paul somewhat of a black sheep, but also provided the perfect name for his new brewery. Paul struck out to champion high quality, independent brewing with the first brew of Best Bitter on 14th September 1992.

In the following 30 years, Black Sheep have bridged the void between traditional cask ales and innovative craft beers. Continuous innovation has led to a range of iconic and award-winning Stouts, Pale and Blonde Ales and modern, hoppy IPAs.

Our beers are exclusively brewed with fresh Yorkshire Dales water extracted directly from limestone aquifers.

The brewery is still run with family at the helm with Paul’s sons Jo and Rob in Director roles, with Black Sheep going from strength to strength.

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