Joseph Holt Brewery
Loyal patrons of Joseph Holt pubs and enthusiasts of their award-winning ales have an extra reason to raise a glass at their favourite local this weekend.
174 years of great beer
On the 23rd of June, the iconic Manchester-based brewery, proudly owned by the same family for an impressive six generations, celebrates its 174th birthday.
To mark this milestone, many of the 127 Joseph Holt pubs scattered across the North West region have planned special events, including fun days, karaoke sessions, and charity raffles.
According to Richard Kershaw, the Chief Executive of this independent brewery, “Every year is a cause for celebration.”
The roots of this illustrious establishment trace back to 1849 when Joseph Holt, a weaver’s son, founded the brewery.
Kershaw, who is the great-grandson of the brewery’s founder, recognises that their pubs are more than mere places to enjoy a refreshing drink or a delicious meal.
They serve as the beating hearts of their respective communities, offering a sense of belonging and fostering connections among the patrons.
These establishments go beyond the pint of their renowned ales; they provide spaces for various groups to meet, ranging from menopause support groups to church services.
Joseph Holt in the community
Joseph Holt pubs actively engage in projects aimed at aiding the local community, such as fundraising initiatives for defibrillators in their pubs and collections of school uniforms to support families facing financial challenges.
The birthday celebration serves as a reminder for the brewery to reflect on how they can further assist the communities they serve.
Charitable endeavours have always been at the core of Joseph Holt’s values, with the brewery raising hundreds of thousands of pounds for various causes since its inception.
Their beneficiaries include food banks and other essential community services.
In a remarkable feat, Joseph Holt is the sole brewery to have won the prestigious ‘Heart of the Community’ category at the British Beer and Pub Association Awards for three consecutive years.
Joseph Holt’s charity work
Building on their longstanding association, Joseph Holt has recently launched a two-year charity appeal with to raise £500,000 for the renowned Christie Hospital and Holt Radium Institute.
The Holt Radium Institute, established by Sir Edward Holt in 1914, amalgamated with The Christie Hospital in 1933 to form The Christie Hospital and Holt Radium Institute.
The funds raised will contribute to the development of a new Advanced Oncology Scanning Centre, further enhancing the critical services provided by the institution.
Leading the charge in this fundraising endeavour is Richard Kershaw himself. This month, he embarked on a gruelling 600-mile week-long charity bike ride through France, accompanied by his three sons.
Andrew, one of his sons, is actively involved in the brewery’s operations and represents the sixth generation of the family working in this beloved establishment.
The bike ride has already generated an impressive £30,000 for the charity appeal, showcasing the commitment of the Holt family to making a tangible difference.
Joseph Holt Brewery History
Joseph Holt’s journey began modestly when founder Joseph Holt and his wife Catherine Parry moved into a small house in central Manchester in 1849.
With Catherine’s unwavering support, Joseph rented premises in what is now Manchester’s Northern Quarter, setting up his first beer-making facility.
The expansion continued as the Holt family acquired Ducie Bridge Brewery on what is now Cheetham Hill Road, where they brewed ales and porters. In 1860, Joseph Holt secured a 999-year lease on land in Strangeways, where the brewery stands to this day.
Joseph Holt’s Award-Winning Beers
Many of their award-winning ales are still brewed following the original recipes, although the company continually introduces new lines each year, ensuring their offerings remain fresh and exciting.
Richard Kershaw concludes by stating, “As an independent, regional family brewer, we are deeply proud of the values and principles that define our company.”
With humble beginnings and a remarkable 174-year journey behind them, Joseph Holt looks forward not only to celebrating this milestone but also to continue their legacy of excellence well into the future.
Let’s raise our glasses to Joseph Holt, a brewery that has left a huge impact on the beer landscape of Manchester and beyond.