The brewery, which supports the lifeboats with a 3p donation for every pint sold, invited volunteer crew members of RNLI Cullercoats to enjoy a tour and see how the locally named beers are brewed from start to finish.

Bill Scantlebury, owner of Cullercoats Brewery had been a qualified solicitor, but decided in 2011 to make the leap from law to beer! He is now a happy brewer.

The real guide

During the tour Bill explained to the crew the process of brewing and gave a talk about the various stages that goes into making his eight different types of real ale. The visitors were also provided with an opportunity to taste the different beers and how the different ingredients gave the beers their uniqueness.

Cullercoats Brewery draws its inspiration from the rich history of Cullercoats Lifeboats. Two beers named ‘Lovely Nelly’ and’ Jack the Devil’ was as a result of the stormy events of New Year’s Day 1861, when theLovely Nelly ran aground off Cullercoats Bay. The bowman on the Cullercoats Lifeboat was John Chisholm whose nickname was ‘Jack the Devil’.

Since Bill decided to start donating 3p per pint in 2012 he has raised a fantastic figure of over £17,000 for Cullercoats Lifeboats. As such, the Brewery is the major financial donor to the Lifeboat station.

Bill Scantlebury explained why he supports the RNLI: ‘In my younger days I used to enjoy the coast and done a lot of surfing at Tynemouth. I came to understand the work RNLI volunteers do and their commitment to go out whatever the conditions’.

Scott Jones, Helmsman at Cullercoats Lifeboats, who was one of the visitors said: ‘What Bill has done by donating 3p per pint is a fantastic gesture and the amount he has raised over the last three years is phenomenal. There were some disappointed volunteer crew who were not able to visit the brewery as we needed to ensure that there was sufficient crew available in case there was a shout’.