RESIDENTS, businesses and beer campaigners are hoping that York Brewery will find a new owner after the company went into administration.

It was confirmed yesterday by the York firm's brand manager, Neil Arden, that the company and its parent firm, Mitchell's of Lancaster had gone into administration.

Steven Muncaster and Sarah Bell, of Duff and Phelps Ltd, have been appointed joint administrators.

In a statement, Mr Muncaster said: “While York Brewery is a popular destination for both locals and tourists, the company has unfortunately continued to face cashflow pressures as a result of difficult conditions which are affecting the leisure industry and pubs across the country.

“We are seeking a buyer and we encourage any interested parties to come forward as soon as possible.”

Paul Whiting, head of Visit York, said: “York Brewery has offered visitors to the city a taste of York for over 20 years now and it would be a real shame to see this institution go. Being the first new brewery in the city for over 40 years they were very much the trailblazers of the local brewing trend that is so popular today. Their pubs and the brewery tour on Toft Green are real ‘only in York’ experiences and we hope they find a new buyer as soon as possible.”

Chairman of the Ale group York Camra, Christopher Tregellis, said: “We hope that the Brewery and the three other York pubs, The Three Legged Mare, The Yorkshire Terrier and The Last Drop Inn can find new owners.

“The Rook and Gaskill pub, that used to be owned by York Brewery, is a great example of pubs in York that carry on after a setback under new ownership.”

Tom Corner, 64, from Clifton, said that he had been going to York Brewery establishments since they opened in 1996. He said: “The Yorkshire Terrier is my local city centre pub for me. I hope it can find a new owner.”

Mr Tregellis added that the Brewery establishment were more than just a pub.

He said:”They are a community for long-time members, offering regular quiz nights and get together.

“They are also a place for tourists to visit.”