The founders of Gloucestershire’s Hillside Brewery, the Williamson family, have announced its pending closure at the end of August 2021.
It was back in January 2021 when the brewery near Longhope in the Forest of Dean first sparked speculation that it was closing when its home, Holly Bush Farm, went on the market for £2.25 million.
And now, in an emotional social media post, Paul Williamson, who has run and developed the business with his father Peter over the last eight years, said the time had come to say ‘thank you and goodbye’.
The post reads: ‘Hillside Brewery will close at the end of August. On behalf of myself and everyone at Hillside Brewery I want to thank everyone so, so much for all your support over the last few years.
‘We have had some great events, made some great friendships, we love the location and we love the people. We just feel it is time for us to move on.’
Peter confirmed the sale of the property and its assets is due to complete at the end of August 2021, with all remaining events – including this week’s outdoor theatre production of Beauty and the Beast and all weddings – still going ahead.
But he has said the brand, which has won an estimated 60 awards in its time, will not continue.
‘We have put so much into the business, Paul especially, and really cared about what it stood for. One of the things with the sector we are in, is the more successful you become the more demanding it is on your time, but it has been a great time,’ said Peter.
Discussions are still underway which could see brewing continue in some form, but without the Hillside name and not on the existing site.
The brewery, part of the farm buildings, is set within 40 acres with the main barn converted into a hospitality venue with a mezzanine level and outside terraced area.
It has a five-star food hygiene rating and has, as you might expect, a premises licence.
The estate includes a newly-built events barn, two holiday lets, a brew house, bottling room, stores, a shop and offices.
By Andrew Merrell