We are proud that our pubs and breweries are an integral part of their communities. For many the relationship has been longstanding; our oldest brewery in Burton was founded in 1834, and our brewery in Wolverhampton in 1890. At Marston’s we recognise that the relationship with our community is an essential ingredient for the appreciation of the distinctiveness our beer brands, and an essential foundation for our pubs.
We continually survey what our pub customers think of the service they have received. From these results we adapt our offering to suit local tastes and changing preferences. This dialogue with our communities is assisted by our pubs’ support for a range of local voluntary activities arranged by our customers and staff.
Our aim is for our breweries to remain the pride of their communities, and we are determined that it stays that way. Marston’s has a reputation for investing in its smaller regional breweries in Ringwood, Witney and Cockermouth, and the Company is renowned for respecting the provenance and history of its local beers. At Marston’s we understand that the value of these regional brands reflects the affection of their local communities, for whom they were often originally created.
We support Long Live the Local – a nationwide campaign from Britain’s Beer Alliance. Backed by the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA), the campaign celebrates the vital role that local pubs play in our communities, culture and national identity. It calls on the Government to cut high beer tax to help keep British pubs open.
Pubs are one of the few remaining public spaces offering a unique combination of great food, drink and atmosphere at the heart of the community. Watch a special video that celebrates the great British pub.
A recent study by the BBPA revealed nine in ten UK adults (89%) are pub goers. 63% said pubs bring the community together and 99% believe their local is a great place for celebrations and special occasions.
Between 2008 and 2013, the industry experienced the devastating impact of a five year increase on beer duty. In 5 years, beer sales declined by 24% in pubs, 5000 pubs closed and 58,000 pub and brewing related jobs were lost.
With half of all pub-lovers saying the number one reason they would reconsider a visit to the pub is higher prices, a rise in beer tax puts local pubs and their contribution to communities in jeopardy.
Found in modern cities, market towns, rural villages and everywhere in between, our pubs play a really important role at the heart of communities. They bring people together, offering a place to socialise. Our pubs often work closely with local businesses, providing essential services beyond drinks, food and entertainment and, they support local charities and fundraising efforts, too.
We’re proud of our relationship with local communities and we’re dedicated to bringing people together in the great British pub for years to come.
The Long Live the Pub website has more information on the campaign, details on how to write to your local MP and allows you to sign the petition to cut beer tax.
Our breweries participate in local events and host many themselves on site including:
Marston’s Brewery threw open their gates to Burton people one Saturday in September to the brewery yard and visitors centre DE14, to celebrate all that is great about local beer, food, music and comedy.
Beers on tap included eight craft beers and ten cask ales from seven different breweries including the Marston’s Brewery, DE14, Freedom and Tower Brewery with cider from the Kingston Press Hut.
Local artisan street food was on offer from Speedough Pizza and Yes Chef Gourmet Burgers.
The stage was rocking with live entertainment from local musicians, Shallow Waters and Lapels with some stand-up comedy by Snap Comedy in Birmingham.
Jo Wyke (Marketing Manager) said:
“We are really proud to be based in Burton as the spiritual home of brewing in the UK so we wanted to celebrate all that is fantastic about this town. We lined up a range of great beers and local foods accompanied by entertainment in the form of live music and comedy.
Sometimes when you live in a town you don’t visit or appreciate what is on your doorstep: our Victorian brewery setting is very special and we were proud to show it off. We wanted people to see and enjoy what Burton has to offer and have a really good knees up at the same time!”
The proceeds from the day were donated to the Burton Breweries Charitable Trust, an organisation committed to supporting projects that make a lasting difference to disadvantaged young people in the communities of East Staffordshire and South Derbyshire.
Brakspear is the proud chief sponsor of a bicycle hire scheme this year in Oxford. Based on the idea of being as easy to use and as flexible as possible, Jericho based Bainton Bikes launched a bike hire plan that has no docking stations and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
This allows cyclists to pick up a bike any time of day or night, use it as necessary and return it there when finished. These modern day ‘Brakspear Bikes’ have been roaming around Oxford spreading the Brakspear brand and easing congestion.
Wychwood Brewery once again hosted the ever popular Grand Lighting of The Pumpkins event to celebrate All Hallows Eve.
Welcoming over 1,000 guests through the brewery gates, this year’s event proved more popular than ever before and was host to some amazing Halloween fancy dress costumes by both the kids and the adults! The bar was in full flow from the beginning right to the end, and guests were able to sip on Hobgoblin or Hobgoblin Gold, with some Witches Brew and Frog Slime for the kids.
The brewery was full of ghouls and goblins and they were all kept on their feet dancing the night away to music from local band, The Village Idiots, and being entertained and amazed by the Wychwayz Border Morris dancers. The night was full of spooktacular activities and visitors were able to get their faces painted, have their fortunes told, listen to the tale of the Hobgoblin in the gory story corner, try their luck on the Wheel of Misfortune and test their Aunt Sally skills!
Each year Marston’s makes a substantial financial contribution to the charity Pub is The Hub to help pubs in small, often rural communities, adapt and survive changing economic pressures. The charity helps pubs offer additional services to their communities such as shops, play areas, postal services and libraries www.pubisthehub.org.uk.
Our Head Office staff devote time to community projects in the locality of Wolverhampton.
The Old Tree Nursery produces home grown plants, flowers, trees and fresh produce and offers a range of onsite services and facilities in a socially-responsible manner. The team of 62 volunteers from the Estates Department, helped refurbish the on-site shop that provides a mixture of handmade gifts and cards, created a Fairy Garden & Nature Trail as well as improving the general amenity levels. With the help of a few contractors and interior designers, we helped the scheme become more commercially viable, as all income and profit received from sales is ploughed back into Old Tree Nursery to support the employment, education and training of people with learning difficulties and other vulnerabilities within the local community. View more details about Charity Day.
A team of 50 volunteers from our property division has helped to complete the final touches on the brand new sensory garden for St Anthony’s residential home. The garden which had been left overgrown and unusable has now been turned around with the help of collaboration between ourselves and Hannafin LTD; the garden is now the perfect sanctuary for both residents and their families to enjoy.
Ben Lister, a resident of St Anthony’s since April 2014, spoke of the all the great changes to the garden, “Having the new garden is a delight for me and my two young children. This lovely space enables me to spend time outside with them; the area was very run down before but has been transformed into something which is a visual treat as well as an amenity for all of us to enjoy.”
Mark Stafford, who worked closely with St Anthony’s throughout the project said, “It’s great that Marston’s could get involved with something as rewarding as this, not just for us but for the residents and everyone involved at St Anthony’s. The garden looks great and is a credit to everyone’s hard work.”
The Wolverhampton Business Champions group was set up to promote the City as a great place to invest, work, live and visit. The group is comprised of ten large strategic businesses with their head office, or key operations within or close to Wolverhampton, including Marston’s, Carillion, JLR, MOOG, and House of Fraser which employ collectively close to 70,000 people in the UK, of which over 5,500 are in the Midlands. The group works with key stakeholders, including the City Council, West Midlands Police, the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership, local and national politicians to raise the profile of the city nationally.
Marston’s has actively supported Wolverhampton’s city centre management for a number of years. As a company with its head office in the proposed Business Improvement District (BID) Marston’s has plays a role in its delivery. BID is a government vehicle to ring fence rates income for local improvements with the BID geography. The BID works to deliver enhancements to the city centre making it more attractive and vibrant for customers and city employees. The BID is managed by the Wolverhampton BID Company Ltd which Marston’s actively supports.
Marston’s is a Founder Patron of the Youth Zone in Wolverhampton (“The Way”) situated close to our head office and opened in January 2016.
The Way offers recreational, sports and developmental activities for over 2,000 young people who live in and around the City. It is a breath taking, modern, purpose built building full of state of the art equipment aimed at inspiring young people and assuring them of the importance of their role within our community.
This year we have expanded our engagement with The Way by involving ourselves in their Get a Job Week programme, and their Inspiring Futures project involving young people aged 13/14.
The Inspiring Futures Project was aimed at young people:
At Marston’s we have such a wide variety of roles and different working environments, The Way felt putting on a ‘place to work’ showcase for the students from Our Lady & St. Chad’s School in Wolverhampton, would be a great way to inspire the students. Marston’s House, our head office, is not a typical working environment, with open plan working, hot desking in beer barrels and table tennis competitions at lunch time, the students saw a different and more interesting side of what working in an office can be like.
At Marston’s we are known for our breweries and pubs. The Marston’s Talent Academy offers all the facilities of a pub, a training cellar, and kitchen and board room! Dave Mann, our Talent Academy Manager, ran a chef competition for the students to inspire them into possibly working in a pub kitchen one day. The “Create and make your own pizza” competition began, the students had great fun designing their savoury, and sweet, pizza’s, giving them a memorable name, making them with an array of ingredients and of course, eating them for lunch, and dessert! We were so proud how the students put all their efforts into making the best pizza, it was a superbly engaging and inspiring session, complete with chef’s hats and aprons, the menu development kitchen was buzzing with energy and lots of ‘Yes Chef’s’! At the start of the session, no hands were raised when Dave asked if anyone was interested in cooking or cookery programmes, by the end, half the group had their hands in the air and were clearly inspired into our industry – Dave’s words, “I expect to see you in two or three years’ time”, was met with nods of agreement by the students!