Peterborough’s Oakham Ales warns jobs are at risk after Covid lockdown

Jobs are at risk at a Peterborough brewery which is fighting to survive after being battered by the Covid pandemic.

By Paul Grinnell
Wednesday, 15th July 2020, 5:30 am
Updated Wednesday, 15th July 2020, 5:52 am
Adrian Posnett, managing director of Oakham Ales. EMN-200219-160451009
Adrian Posnett, managing director of Oakham Ales. EMN-200219-160451009

Staff at Oakham Ales, in Maxwell Road, Woodston, have been warned a number of redundancies will have to be made as bosses desperately seek to restructure the business.

A consultation process with staff is underway but it is not yet known how many redundancies might be made.

The brewery, which produces the equivalent of 8.8 million pints of beer a year, has 40 staff and recently began a £2 million expansion.

Directors warn urgent changes are need to ensure the brewery’s survival following the devastating impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown which forced the closure of pubs, bars, restaurants and hotels.

At the start of the lockdown in March, the brewery was left with no option but to pour away thousands of litres of ale that could not be sold.

It found some respite in the sale of its canned and bottled drinks in the supermarkets and through its website during the lockdown.

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Adrian Posnett, managing director, said: “We are proud of our record in creating jobs during our growth over the last few years, but the current extraordinary circumstances have hit the brewing industry extremely hard and to ensure our survival, we do have to take action.

“Unfortunately this will involve the loss of some jobs but we hope that taking these steps will put us in a stronger position to guarantee the future of Oakham Ales and give us the chance to rebuild levels of business to the point where once again, we will need to expand our workforce.”

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