Stourbridge brewery celebrates horse-powered anniversary
A West Midlands brewery is celebrating its second anniversary – with the aid of a little horse-power.
Dotty the driving pony has become a regular attraction around the town since she started weekly beer deliveries from Craddock’s Brewery at the Duke William in Stourbridge town centre to the Plough and Harrow in Worcester Street.
Both award-winning pubs are run by David Craddock, who took over the Duke William in Coventry Street in 2009 and launched his brewery there in spring 2011. Since then David and his team have produced 2,500 firkins of ale, and a third of that has been delivered by horse-drawn dray through the town to the Plough and Harrow, which David has run since 2006.
David, aged 31, said: “I always wanted to run the kind of pub where I would like to be a customer so it made sense to launch a brewery that made the kind of beer I would like to drink. It’s been a lot of hard work, but definitely worth it.
“The Black Country has a deserved reputation for the quality of its local beer and I am proud to be part of that great tradition.”
His debut beer was called First Born – brewed in the same month that his son, Arthur, came into the world. Since then more than 20 different recipes have been devised, all promoted with distinctive goat-themed pump clips and artwork – inspired by the nickname of Duke William, the original Silly Billy.
More than 90 per cent of the beer sold at the Duke William is brewed on the premises and around 50 per cent of the beer sold at the Plough & Harrow is delivered by 20-year-old Dotty.
Dotty even has her own Facebook page – www.facebook.com/dottythedrayhorse – to keep fans up to date with her trips through the town.
The Duke William was named pub of the year in 2011 and 2012 by the Stourbridge and Halesowen branch of the Campaign for Real Ale. The Plough & Harrow won the title in 2010. Both pubs have also won awards for their cider.
Craddock’s also supplies beer to festivals across the Midlands, to the Black Country Living Museum and to Stourbridge Rugby Club and Stourbridge Football Club.