Kirkstall Brewery has taken over The Tetley building

“It really is the crown jewel of brewing history in Leeds, and we are deeply grateful for the opportunity to make it a landmark of Yorkshire beer culture once again.”

Big news.

Kirkstall Brewery has announced that it is taking on the lease of The Tetley building.

The plan is to make it a hub for great beer from Leeds and renew its status as a “landmark of Yorkshire beer culture”.

‘The Tetley’ building itself is the former brewing headquarters of Tetley’s Brewery, and having spent the last decade as an arts and gallery space (until the end of 2023), it is now planned to return to its beer heritage roots.

Kirkstall Brewery will operate onsite from May onwards, showcasing local beers, including, but not exclusively, the brand’s own beers, including Leeds Brewery and owner Steve Holt’s most recent acquisition, North (formerly known as North Brewing Co).

Image: Supplied

The news comes just days after the team behind The Tetley, the announced that they have still not been able to find a new permanent home since leaving The Tetley building in 2023 as it finished its 10-year lease.

“It’s a tremendous privilege to bring Leeds’s most iconic brewery building into the Kirkstall fold,” said Steve Holt, Kirkstall Brewery’s owner and founder. “As a brewery that pays a great deal of respect to the history of brewing in the city, we believe we are the ideal custodians for the next chapter of this legendary building.”

Michael Cronin, Head of Portfolio at Vastint UK, the developer behind Aire Park and owners of The Tetley building, said: “Last year we outlined our ambitions to safeguard this iconic building for the next 100 years and have now submitted our plans to the council. Since we became custodians of the building, it was always our intention to keep it open until the restoration work got underway to bring this fantastic building up to 21st century standards.

“So, we’re thrilled to be welcoming Kirkstall Brewery to Aire Park and to be bringing one of the current generations of Leeds and Yorkshire breweries to a site which has played such a pivotal role in the history of beer making in the region.

“The Tetley will form the centre piece of Aire Park, alongside the eight-acre public park and this collaboration will hopefully give the people of Leeds a small taster of what’s to come in the very near future.”

Holt added: “It really is the crown jewel of brewing history in Leeds, and we are deeply grateful for the opportunity to make it a landmark of Yorkshire beer culture once again.”

The Tetley is expected to reopen under Kirkstall’s management in May.

About The Tetley

The brewery was founded by Joshua Tetley in 1822, when he bought the site for a mere £400. A few years later in 1839 he made his son, Francis William a partner, creating Joshua Tetley and Son.

Construction of the new brewery began in 1852 and by 1860, Tetley was the largest brewery in the North of England. By 1875, annual beer production had reached a whopping 171,500 barrels.

Built in the Art Deco style in 1931. In the 1980s, Tetley’s Brewery became the largest producer of cask ale in the world, and the site has remained an icon of Leeds beer history, even after its closure in 2011.

The space was used as contemporary art gallery from 2013 until 2023, called The Tetley, when its lease ended.

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Feature Image – Supplied

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