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14 January 2022

Carlsberg Marston’s looks for buyer after closing London Fields Brewery

United Kingdom | Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company closed its London Fields Brewery in December 2021, with an eye to selling the craft beer brand just four years after buying it for a reported GBP 4 million (USD 4.9 million).

Among the many London breweries, London Fields was perhaps better known for its colourful past than its beers. It was founded in 2011 by Julian de Vere Whiteway-Wilkinson, a former event organiser, upon his release from prison. He had served half of a 12-year term for cocaine smuggling. After he failed to pay taxes, he was charged with tax evasion in 2017 and was forced to sell the firm. He was later acquitted of cheating the tax man.

London Fields: surplus to requirements?

Carlsberg Marston’s decided to close the brewery after its beers saw their value sales decline significantly during 2020. As The Grocer, a trade magazine, explained, London Fields was not a huge player in the off-premise or the managed on-premise.

Next to the more successful Brooklyn brands, which Carlsberg has distributed in the UK since 2016, and the other craft beers it gained through the merger with Marston’s in 2020, London Fields could have begun to look unnecessary.

Carlsberg Marston’s is now trying to find a buyer, who will see the potential of the brand’s London provenance and its well-invested brewery. A 15-hl brewhouse by Kaspar Schulz was installed in 2019.