Jennings Brewery was founded in the village of Lorton, Cumbria in 1828 by John Jennings. Beer was brewed here until 1874 when its present home, the Castle Brewery in Cockermouth, was purchased. The Lorton brewery closed some five years later.
Over the decades the brewery expanded and acquired many Cumbrian breweries. In 2005 the brewery was itself taken over by Marstons PLC. The move was welcomed by Jennings and it has allowed for a lot of investment and due to Marstons’ large portfolio of pubs, their beers are available right across the country.
I had originally planned on touring the brewery on the very day that it was flooded on the 19th November, 2009. At the height of the flood, the brewery was up to seven feet under water resulting in the closure of the brewery for three months. Tours started again in April and at the beginning of May I returned.
The tour was during the Cockermouth Georgian festival which explains the attire of the member of staff giving the tour. The 45 minute tour starts at the at the brewery’s well near the entrance where all water used in their beers is drawn from. It then follows the brewing process over a few levels taking in the hop and malt rooms where you can taste and smell the ingredients.
You get to access the majority of the brewery and the tour guide is very knowledgeable of the both brewing and the history of the brewery.
The tour is very reasonably priced at £6 which also includes a half of your choice in the large tasting room/pub. With 10 beers on tap, you’re more than welcome to stay to try a few more.
Tel: 0845 129 7190
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