Students brew up a success with local MP

Members of the Real Ale Society with Paul Blomfield MPEnterprising University of Sheffield students with a passion for real ale have brewed a new beer with Paul Blomfield MP, set to be sold across Sheffield and even in the Strangers Bar in the House of Commons.

The students brewed 2,500 pints of Bees Knees Bitter, a 4 per cent best bitter at Blue Bee Brewery in Neepsend, with the help of Mr Blomfield - a keen supporter of Sheffield’s thriving real ale industry. The beer will be officially launched this week (Wednesday 14 November 2012) at Sheffied Students’ Union.

The students are part of Sheffield Student Union’s Real Ale Society. President Nathan Rodgers said: “Taking a beer made by students in Sheffield to the bar in the House of Commons in Westminster is just an incredible prospect. Real Ale is often overlooked, but it's a big industry in Sheffield. In fact, the Sheffield Branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) found that Sheffield was the Beer Capital of the UK, so it's interesting to see how Sheffield, the former Steel City, has forged itself into this new artisan and cultural trade of brewing, with over 10 different microbreweries in Sheffield. It's really good to see a trade bucking the trend of the recession.

“Also, Sheffield is the only place in the UK to have the CAMRA best national pub of the UK, two years in a row - so it not only makes great beer, it also has many great and unique venues that sell the stuff.”

Paul Blomfield recently visited Blue Bee Brewery in Neepsend to try his hand at brewing, mixing the ingredients and throwing in the hops to the new beer.

Paul said: “It’s not every day that the opportunity to brew beer comes along, so I was delighted when the University of Sheffield’s Real Ale Society asked me to join in with their brewing. Sheffield’s growing micro-brewing industry is a real local success story so the plan is to promote this success by having the beer sold at Westminster as well as across Sheffield.”

Nathan said the Real Ale Society also want to challenge the stereotype of student drinkers and to bring people closer to the local origins of the product they consume. He said: “Whenever you see student drinking in the media it's always bad, it doesn't have to be that way – we like to promote a sensible and mature attitude towards drinking.

“By brewing our beer, it's a way of taking the anonymity out of that glass the bar man gives you in the pub. The drink has its own little story in a way- from the ingredients, to the farmers that grew the crops, to the people who made it.”

Additional information

Bees Knees Bitter, brewed by the University of Sheffield’s Real Ale Society and Neepsend Brewery, will be on sale across Sheffield and in the Houses of Commons from 14 November 2012. To find out more, visit:
The Real Ale Society

The University of Sheffield
With nearly 25,000 students from 125 countries, the University of Sheffield is one of the UK´s leading and largest universities. A member of the Russell Group, it has a reputation for world-class teaching and research excellence across a wide range of disciplines.

The University of Sheffield has been named University of the Year in the Times Higher Education Awards for its exceptional performance in research, teaching, access and business performance. In addition, the University has won four Queen´s Anniversary Prizes (1998, 2000, 2002, 2007). These prestigious awards recognise outstanding contributions by universities and colleges to the United Kingdom´s intellectual, economic, cultural and social life. Sheffield also boasts five Nobel Prize winners among former staff and students and many of its alumni have gone on to hold positions of great responsibility and influence around the world.

The University´s research partners and clients include Boeing, Rolls-Royce, Unilever, Boots, AstraZeneca, GSK, ICI, Slazenger, and many more household names, as well as UK and overseas government agencies and charitable foundations.

The University has well-established partnerships with a number of universities and major corporations, both in the UK and abroad. Its partnership with Leeds and York Universities in the White Rose Consortium has a combined research power greater than that of either Oxford or Cambridge.


For further information please contact:

Amy Stone
Media Relations Officer
The University of Sheffield
0114 222 1046