East Yorkshire bottled ale supports struggling farming families

East Yorkshire’s Great Newsome Brewery is helping the farming community with its latest brew.

For every bottle of its Old Fergie brown ale, the craft brewery will donate 5p to the Farming Community Network (FCN).

FCN offers confidential support and guidance for farmers and their families via a free helpline (03000 111 999) operated by volunteers who understand farming life.

Matthew Hodgson, founder of Great Newsome Brewery, said: “We’re a family of farmers, so it’s for a cause that’s very close to all of us.

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Great Newsome's Old Fergie brown ale, named after a trusty tractor
Great Newsome’s Old Fergie brown ale, named after a trusty tractor
(Image: Great Newsome Brewery)

“Agriculture really can feel isolating, you know. When it seems like you’ve got absolutely no support or anyone to talk to in an industry as volatile and personal as this one, things can quickly slip.

“We’re proud to be working with such a kind-hearted, compassionate charity. I hope we can help make a real difference.”

Despite much of the craft beer landscape focusing on urban environments, Great Newsome, based in South Frodingham, Holderness, has never made a secret of its farming heritage.

Many of its most popular tipples are named after old (occasionally ancient) farming terms, such as Sleck Dust and Yan Tan Tethera. The brewery itself is even housed inside converted farmhouses.

The latest bottled beer in question, Old Fergie, is no different. The name and artwork refer to a specific Massey Ferguson 35, a tractor that has been in the family’s service for about half a century.

The beer itself is a brown ale in the classic northern English style.

Great Newsome Farm, of which the brewery is part, was awarded Family Farm of the Year at the 2020 British Farming Awards.

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