Wales

Conwy Valley brewer hands tax cut to drinks charity

Great Orme Brewery yard, Glan Conwy
Image caption The microbrewery in the Conwy Valley is donating the 1p beer duty cut to charity

A brewer from the Conwy Valley is handing over savings from beer tax cuts to help children of problem drinkers.

Jonathan Hughes from the Great Orme microbrewery is asking other parts of the drinks industry to follow his lead.

He is donating every 1p cut in beer duty from his sales to the National Association of Children of Alcoholics (Nacoa).

His plea for others to follow suit is being supported by the Society of Independent Brewers.

"My plan is that rather than pocketing that 1p duty reduction, we donate it to Nacoa," said Mr Hughes, whose brewery is based at Glan Conwy.

"I would call on other alcohol producers - big and small - to look at practical ways they can help reduce the effects of alcohol abuse on society.

Mr Hughes said he accepted that as a small producer his financial contribution would be limited, but he is convinced it is a positive step for the industry.

"British beer making is in a renaissance, with more small producers offering a wealth of amazing real ales and true regional diversity.

"However, I do believe that if we, as a sector, are to be socially responsible then we must acknowledge the potential negative aspects of alcohol and take steps to address it."

Keith Bott, chairman of the Society of Independent Brewers, said the body was "hugely supportive" of Mr Hughes stance.

Helpline funding

"I think it encapsulates everything that the British brewing industry is about, in particular independent brewers and the way they can support the wider community," he said.

"Every brewer will decide what they do themselves but this is a fantastic idea which illustrates one of the ways in which we can be supportive."

The Conwy Valley brewer sealed his pledge to support the Nacoa charity at its annual awards dinner recently.

The charity's chief executive Hilary Henriques said she was delighted by the move.

"Every child deserves to live a creative and meaningful life," she said.

"Sadly, when alcoholism is the family secret, children are more likely to experience difficult situations with family violence, neglect and other problems.

"The Nacoa helpline is funded entirely by voluntary donations and we applaud Jonathan Hughes of the Great Orme Brewery for the 1p Campaign - every penny will fund our work providing information, advice and support for children struggling with their parents alcohol problems."

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