Hook Norton, the Cotswold-based brewer and pub operator, is jumping on the craft beer bandwagon with plans to build a new pilot brewery.

James Clarke, managing director (brewing), said he hoped to have the new craft brewery up and running by the end of 2013, and it would produce between two and four barrels per year.

Over the last couple of years a number of regional brewers including Thwaites, Brains and Shepherd Neame have built craft breweries in order to experiment with new, short-run beers and collaborative brews.

“We’d like to invite people to come and brew their own beers, and want to encourage more brewery tours and greater use of the visitor centre,” Clarke told M&C Report’s sister title Publican’s Morning Advertiser.

Clarke reported that the brewery’s latest beer, Lion, was on track to be its biggest seller within six months, and had secured listings with the major tenanted and leased operators from next month.

Separately, Hook Norton is to roll out new pub signage to its tenanted estate and will launch a new online ordering system for tenants in July.