Butcombe Brewery has acquired two new freehold sites and unveiled plans to add up to 20 sites a year over the next five years.

The brewer, which currently operates 19 pubs, today announced the purchase of the Pelican Inn at Chew Magna and The Charlton in Shepton Mallet.

The group said the Pelican would trade in its current form and with existing staff for the moment but that there were plans to grow the existing business through renovation and the creation of additional bedrooms. The Charlton will go directly into the group’s tenanted estate.

Butcombe, which is part of the Channel Islands-based Liberation Group, re-opened the Mill at Rode last month after a £400,000 renovation, which it said was part of a wider plan to increase, modernise and improve its pub stock.

Butcombe managing director Geraint Williams said: “We have been brewing some of the best beer in the UK since the 1970s and we have built a new team to drive the business forward. It is very important to us not to lose the character for which we are known and loved across our heartland. Our beer is what makes us who we are and is at the core of everything we do. Having a modern, well invested pub portfolio is obviously important because we want our customers to enjoy our products in the best surroundings.”

Liberation Group chief executive Mark Crowther said: “We acquired Butcombe in early 2015 and it has always been our intention to grow the business both organically and through acquisition. Liberation Group is delighted to welcome the Pelican and Charlton Inn into our business as part of our ambition to become the leading brewer and pub operator in the West Country.”