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  Dumfries & Stewartry Branch News

The Ship Inn (Dumfries)

The Ship Inn in Dumfries has been taken over by Hawthorn Leisure and is temporarily closed for refurbishment.  Hawthorn recently bought 270 or so pubs from Belhaven (Greene King).  Besides the Ship it now has 4 other pubs in Dumfries - The Mount Sydney, Lochthorn Inn (used to be the Vacuna), the Stag and the Lochside Tavern.

Hawthorn is owned an American,Oxford-educated Noah Bulkin, who made his money as a mergers and acquisitions banker for Merrill Lynch and Lazard before leaving last year to start his own pub company.  He now has an acquired empire of around 350 pubs throughout the UK. 

Historic Commons Vote on tied pubs

Members should know by now that MPs voted recently to change the rules which affect tied pubs. It was a historic vote which will go a long way to protecting pubs and securing decent prices. 

Did you lobby your MP?  How did our representatives do? For information, Russell Brown MP voted FOR the changes but David Mundell MP voted AGAINST it.

There will be other votes before the legislation is final - so it’s best to keep in touch with them to make sure.

The Queensberry has given up cask ales ...

The Queensberry Hotel in Dumfries has finally thrown in the towel with regard to cask ales.

Part of the Smith & Jones chain, the hotel has dabbled with cask ales since it opened a few years ago.  Seems they have now decided to stop serving it.  We’ll update you if the position changes ...

We’ve just received the information that there’s a new local 

Brewery.  Named the “Lola Rose Brewery” it is in 

Wanlockhead, the highest village in Scotland so it really is a “beer with altitude”. It is Scotland’s highest brewery.

It is currently producing 3 brews - Red, Blonde and Stout and all named “1531” which is the height of Wanlockhead in feet above sea level.

We’ll do a proper report on it when we get more information

We are unsure of Hawthorn’s plans for the Ship.  There’s talk of making it into a “Craft Coffee” and “Craft Beer” Bar.  We’ll be fighting to retain its character as a traditional Dumfries pub ...


Two New

Ale Outlets

The Riverside Inn

The GOOD News is that Anne Magee who was running the Ship before it closed has taken over the Riverside Inn in Dock Park.  She has 4  ales on Tap - 2 resident ales (Deuchars and Old Specled Hen) and 2 guests.  The pub isn’t tied to any brewer, so Anne has a free hand to bring in some interesting guests.

The Nithsdale Hotel

We’ve heard that the Nithsdale Hotel in Sanquhar (photo above) is serving live ales. Great news - as up until now Upper Nithsdale has been devoid of any ale.  We need someone to do a proper visit to the pub and let us have a report and the other details for the pub.  If you can manage that, contact Liam Chalmers for information.

We’ll keep you advised and post pages for each pub on the website as soon as possible

New Brewery at Wanlockhead

Branch Meeting - 27th July at 8.00pm in the Tam o’ Shanter Inn Dumfries

For details see the notice Board