YORK's real ale industry is set for further growth as a former policeman looks to launch a new micro-brewery in the city.

Andy Herrington established Ainsty Ales in September last year, and is now working towards a trial brew ahead of plans to launch his brewery in the old York and District Ainsty area this Autumn.

Mr Herrington is working with Brass Castle Brewery in Malton on the trial brew, which will be unveiled at the Copmanthorpe Carnival on June 28. He said: "The Brass Castle Brewery is allowing me to do some Cuckoo Brewing, whereby I pay to use the spare capacity at the brewery whenever it’s available. As a start-up, this is incredibly helpful.”

With plans to start Ainsty Ales as a locally run eight-barrel microbrewery Mr Herrington says he hopes to expand and move premises nearer to the centre of York, which could accommodate a visitor centre, café and brewery tours.

He said looking further into the future it is the intention to purchase a free house or preferably a brew-house in the York area.

Mr Herrington is being supported on his venture by York accountants Garbutt & Elliott.

Mr Herrington said: "I’ve known Matthew Grant, director of Garbutt & Elliott, since childhood.

"Garbutt & Elliott have worked with a number of other local breweries and Matthew himself is a senior member of CAMRA in York, so they ticked all the boxes."

Mr Grant added: "It’s an absolute pleasure helping Ainsty Ales. Andy is enthusiastic, courageous and passionate and he loves his beer, which I think is the perfect combination of characteristics for a great brewer.

“Once Ainsty Ales is fully up and running, we hope Andy will take part in the Growth Accelerator programme, which provides financial support and business coaching to help ambitious businesses to achieve rapid and sustainable growth."

Ainsty Ales will become the latest in a growing list of micro breweries to open in the city following in the footsteps of York Brewery which opened in 1996.

Since 2009, more than 15 new breweries have opened in York, North Yorkshire or East Yorkshire, including Brass Castle and Bad Seed in Malton, North Riding in Scarborough, the Hop Studio in Elvington, Half Moon in Ellerton, Cropton Brewery which has reincarnated as Great Yorkshire, Treboom, Four Thorns, Yorkshire Heart and Rudgate.