Town's new brewery has big ideas

FOUR years since the taps were turned off at the historic Tolly Cobbold brewery, beer production is returning to Ipswich.A new brewery called St Judes is being installed in the town's Cardigan Street, with the first tanks arriving today .

FOUR years since the taps were turned off at the historic Tolly Cobbold brewery, beer production is returning to Ipswich.

A new brewery called St Judes is being installed in the town's Cardigan Street, with the first tanks arriving today .

The seven-vessel plant is the brainchild of Frank Walsh, a Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) member, science graduate Colleen Seymour and master brewer Andy Harvey.

The original idea, which has been in the pipeline since December, was for the trio to produce enough beer for their own consumption at the 19th Century redundant building, owned by Mr Walsh.


You may also want to watch:


But with the closure of the Tolly Cobbold brewery after 279 years and with pubs crying out for locally-produced ales, they realised there was a gap in the market.

“We have had quite a lot of interest in it so far”, Miss Seymour said.

Most Read

“We will brew our own recipe beers and the plan is to have a blueberry beer, which will be a fruitier beer. Because it will come out blue and will be the only blue beer in the town we are trying to get Ipswich Town Football Club interested.”

The plant will be able to produce up to 125 barrels a week as well as the sale of bottles.

Named after St Jude, the patron saint of workers and one of the 12 apostles, the plan is for the brewery to produce six ales to start with followed by another six later in the year. They hope the first will be ready for the Ipswich Beer Festival at the end of September.

Although the Tolly Cobbold brewing era came to an end after declining production, Miss Seymour is confident St Judes will make money - and hopes it could even give brewing giant Adnams a run for its money over the two years it has planning permission for.

The trio are about to submit paperwork in a bid to gain a licence so people can fill up their own vessels on site, which could see it open until around 10pm.

They are also hoping to find another period property in the town to expand the brewery so it can supply its own members-only club.

Miss Seymour explained her own interest in brewing comes from the fact that women were originally the first brewers, know as brewsters, as well as her knowledge of chemistry.

“Females used to collect local ingredients from the land to brew ale at different strengths for the whole family,” she said.

“The water wasn't safe enough to drink so everyone would have ale as their main source of nutrition. It is packed full of vitamins and fibre from the natural ingredients used in the recipe.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter