Southwold: Adnams head brewer Fergus Fitzgerald named ‘Brewer of the Year’ at All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group awards

Fergus Fitzgerald, centre, head brewer at Adnams, receives his Brewer of the Year award from Simon J

Fergus Fitzgerald, centre, head brewer at Adnams, receives his Brewer of the Year award from Simon Jackson, right, executive director of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling, and Andrew Griffiths MP, chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group, at the group's annual awards dinner in Westminster - Credit: Archant

Adnams head brewer Fergus Fitzgerald has been named “Brewer of the Year” at the All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group’s annual awards dinner.

He was selected for the honour by a panel of judges from the Institute of Brewing & Distlling in recognition of his record of innovation, which has included new beers such as East Green, Ghost Ship and Sole Star and a series of “world beers” using yeasts from other countries.

Fergus joined Adnams in 2004 after seven years with London brewer Fullers and, having completed his Master Brewer exams in the meantime, succeeded Mike Powell Evans as head brewer in 2009.

Suffolk Coastal MP Therese Coffey, who was at the awards event, said: “Congratulations to Fergus on a fantastic achievement. Brewer of the year is a coveted prize at the Annual Beer Awards and he deserves this recognition.

“Adnams is a fine example of our successful businesses who make us all proud to live in Suffolk. It was also great to taste Adnams’ new tipple ‘Native Britten’ brought out for the Benjamin Britten centenary celebrations.”

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The awards also saw Chancellor George Osborne named as Beer Drinker of the Year, in recognition of his decision in this year’s Budget to scrap the beer duty escalator and to reduce the rate by 1p - the first cut in beer duty since 1959.

He was presented with the award by Cabinet colleague Kenneth Clarke, who was the all-party beer group’s first Beer Drinker of the Year in 1994.

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Other honours included a Lifetime Achievement award for Black Sheep brewery founder Paul Theakston, the Beer Sommelier of the Year title for Sophie Atherton and a Special Award for Andrew Griffiths MP, chairman of the beer group, for his work on ending the duty escalator.

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