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Posts Tagged ‘Penrith’

Lake District brewery launches wholesale ales

Friday, February 23rd, 2018

Brack’N’Brew, the micro-brewery based at the Brackenrigg Inn on the shores of Ullswater has recently launched a range of 500ml bottles to complement its existing real ales brewed on site.  The wholesale beers are being stocked across the UK and the local brewery has seen a spike in sales as a result.

Brack’N’Brew was born in March 2015 when an old horse stable at the back of the Brackenrigg Inn Watermillock, was converted into the brew house.  After a few months of trialling recipes, the first ale named ‘Boathouse Blonde’ was brewed and served in the bar at the Brackenrigg Inn.

The Brewery currently has five regular ales available at the Brackenrigg, Inn, including Alfred’s Golden Ale, The Rambling Bookkeeper Bitter, The Steamer Stout and Aira Force IPA.  Seasonal ales make an appearance throughout the year; including a Marmalade ale as part of Dalemain’s Marmalade Festival on the 17th March.

The new 500ml bottle range, has been well received locally and is stocked in a variety of bars, restaurants and shops across the county including Chestnut House in Pooley Bridge, The Sunn Inn Newton Reigny, The Kings Arms in Stainton, Glenridding Mini Market, The Royal at Dockray, Beer Shop Ambleside, House of Malt in Carlisle and Embers Bar in Carlisle.

The bottled beers are also being shipped further afield to Leicester, Nottingham, Wigan, Ingleton and Clitheroe.

Ben Clementson is the Master Brewer behind Brack’N’Brew’s Ales and has been with the brewery from day one. Ben comments,

“We always had a plan to sell our beers in other establishments across Cumbria right from the start.  The range of new bottles have been very well received and we have noticed an increase in sales as a result.  We are very much looking forward to working with more stockists across the country.”

As well as supplying their 500ml bottle range of beers to retailers and bars, Brack’N’Brew is looking to supply their cask ales to an exclusive number of pubs in Cumbria.  The Brewery wants to ensure the exclusivity of the ales, but hopes to supply a select number of establishments with their range of ales in the next year, as well as opening an online shop to sell their bottled craft ales via the internet.



Lisa gets a hat-trick!

Monday, October 2nd, 2017

Well, I only went and did it again…I got a hat-trick in the Enterprise Vision Awards.  I wasn’t sure whether to enter or not this year as I’d won twice before and thought I was perhaps pushing my luck.   However, my business has changed so much over the past few years I felt like I had a lot to tell!

This year, the main difference was that I was shortlisted in the Professional Services category – not Sole Trader category.  I was up against a firm of solicitors, HR company, recruitment firm etc.  Once you’re shortlisted you have to go through to a judging panel “Dragons Den” style.  You would think I wouldn’t be nervous after doing it twice before, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t.   In the past, I’ve talked about me as a person and the passion I put into my business, but this time around it was all about my business, why it was different and why my service offering stood out from the crowd.

This year the event at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool was even more special as Jili Allen, who does a lot of my design work was shortlisted, as well as my cousin’s wife and another colleague, so we all sat together.  I really did not expect to win this year as it was a tough category, so you can imagine when they called out my name I really was gobsmacked.  I know I say it every year, but it always comes as such a shock.  I was so happy as it is a fantastic recognition for all my hard work and effort I put into my business being successful.

Other awards

I am always banging on to clients about the importance of entering awards.  The PR you gain from just being shortlisted is brilliant, even if you don’t go on to win!  Recently my client Hunter Hall School; a primary school in Penrith has been shortlisted for several accolades.  Firstly they were shortlisted for best Marketing Campaign in the CN Group Golden Apple Awards.  Unfortunately, on this occassion, they did not win this award, but the coverage they got in local papers and our own self-promotion on social media was great.

They have also been shortlisted for two TES education awards – again in best Marketing campaign (fingers crossed!) and State School Partnership award, for their cross-country events they run for other local primary schools.  I am heading down to a glitzy awards ceremony in London in February, so I will keep you posted.

Keep an eye out for any local awards in your area, any industry awards that you can apply for – you have nothing to lose and could get a whole lot of free publicity as a result!

Hunter Hall Pupils Get Creative

Thursday, June 30th, 2016

Last week pupils from Year 6 of Hunter Hall School visited sculptor Michelle Castle’s studio in Dockray, as part of one of their art projects.

The pupils had been tasked during their art lessons with creating an abstract statue of a figure, building upon a wire frame.  Michelle Castles is a wire artist who is renowned for her wire mesh sculptures of dynamic and sports figures. She is based in the Lake District and exhibits her wire sculptures across the UK, including The Inspire Exhibition in 2014 and 2015, at The Chelsea Flower Show in 2013 and the Biscuit Factory in Newcastle.

Not only were the pupils very excited about visiting the studio, but their teacher was equally as thrilled about the possibility of introducing Year 6 to her work and were delighted that she agreed to let them visit.

The trip presented quite a unique and unusual opportunity for the children to explore the arts and to learn more about wire modelling and sculpture.  Michelle began with showing pupils her sculptures and drawings and she explained the link between her sculptures and maths.  Half of the class then began making two forms out of wire, whilst the other half were introduced to painter Gina Farncombe, who had kindly offered to run painting sessions for Year 6 from her neighbouring studio.

Hunter Hall get creative with Gina Farncombe

Hunter Hall get creative with Gina Farncombe

Deputy Head Teacher, Antonia Taylor commented,

“The day was thoroughly enjoyed by all of us; it is one of the best trips I have been on!  We are enormously grateful to all involved, who made us feel so welcome and had taken so much time preparing for our visit. The energy and enthusiasm of both Michelle and Gina were truly inspiring and it really was a privilege for our Year 6 children to be invited to work with two professional artists in their own studios.”

Artist Michelle Castles, added,

“I am so pleased the children enjoyed the day as much as I did. They were a real joy to work with and I loved their wholehearted enthusiasm…Their behaviour is a credit to you and the school, you must be very proud of them.”

To find out more about Hunter Hall School’s arts and cultural activities visit

Michelle Castles with Hunter Hall Pupils

Michelle Castles with Hunter Hall Pupils

Carleton Manor Park – Officially Open

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

Cumbrian Homes are pleased to announce the opening of their show home at Penrith’s prestigious new housing development Carleton Manor Park, on Friday 22nd April 2016 – with many properties already snapped up before the doors open.

Carlton Manor Park The development consists of 44 luxury homes in a range of six different styles. This will include three and four bedroom houses and bungalows as well as one, two and three bedroom apartments within the ‘Manor’ and its flanking buildings that prominently overlook the site.

The houses are built using high quality materials; modern in design yet with a traditional feel offering exclusive living in this sought-after location. Many of the properties have already been reserved and for those who have already done so, they have been given the opportunity to add their own bespoke design to the home; something that not many developers offer.

One buyer who is due to get their keys very soon says:

“As soon as we heard about this development and the high quality bespoke style houses we knew it was for us.  We’ve always dreamt of building our own home, but not had the opportunity to do so.  Through buying a house at Carleton Manor Park, we have been able to work with Cumbrian Homes to alter our kitchen, add in new design features, change things around and ensure it is the perfect home for us. We can’t wait to move in.”

The houses will be the most energy efficient houses Cumbrian Homes have built to date, with many features such as smarter heating controls, wood burning/ multi-fuel stove, a high level of thermal insulation, high efficiency argon-filled double glazing units with acoustic glass and, in some cases, premium enhancements from British Gypsum’s “Rooms Made For You” range.

Cumbrian Homes has partnered with British Gypsum towards a common goal of building homes for the future by using higher quality building materials that have a true benefit to homeowners. Three plots at Carleton Manor Park feature British Gypsum magnetic walls, super-strength plasterboard and soundproofing products, allowing the families who move into these houses to get more from their rooms and really enjoy living in a creative space. Magnetic plaster brings rooms to life by making it simple to transform the look without damaging any walls. Super-strength plasterboard makes it possible to hang 15kg from one wood screw, offering homeowners the flexibility to place on the walls what they want, where they want with ease. And soundproofing gives people the freedom to make as much noise in their new home as they want to.

Construction work on Carleton Manor Park began back in September 2015, after final planning conditions were signed off by Eden District Council in August.  The development is situated to the east of Penrith, located adjacent to the Veterinary centre off Carleton Hill Road, opposite the existing “Carleton Heights” housing estate.

Nigel Pallister, Managing Director of Cumbrian Homes comments:

“Carleton Manor Park is undoubtedly the most prestigious development we have built and it is fantastic to see it all coming together. We have had many homes reserved – even before we’ve opened the doors, so we’re sure that opening weekend is going to be busy with the launch of our highly anticipated show home.”

Apartments guide price from £200,000 and 3&4 bedroom houses from £364,000.

To find out more visit the show home from Friday 22nd April or visit to download the development brochure.

Feeling Festive in Penrith

Thursday, September 17th, 2015

Penrith Chamber of Trade is delighted to announce that the Penrith Winter Festival will be taking place again in 2015.  Vital funding and sponsorship has been received from Penrith Business Improvement District and The Lakes and Dales Cooperative, also supported by Discover Penrith, Penrith Building Society and Cumbrian Homes.

The Festival, which takes place from 28th November to 24th December is in its fourth year and aims to add some festive cheer to Penrith and encouraging people to shop local and support independent businesses.

Over the past few years there have been significant changes to the way in which people do their Christmas shopping.  1 in 5 shoppers now choose to do the majority of their shopping online from the comfort of their own Home*.  2014 also saw some new trends such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday sweeping the market in Britain, which are set to have even more of an impact in 2015.  However, there is very strong evidence to suggest that people have a better “feelgood factor” when they shop at individual shops the Winter Festival is about bringing the whole community together to show what a great town Penrith is and to encourage people to do a little bit of their Christmas shopping here.  Buying just the vegetables for the Christmas Dinner can have a significant impact on the local economy.

Amyn Fazal, President of Penrith Chamber of Trade comments,

A lot of hard work goes into the planning of the Winter Festival and every year, businesses come up with some great ideas and there are some great ones in place for 2015.  We hope even more businesses will really get on board and join in with the Festival and that people from Penrith and right across Cumbria come and experience some of the great events, activities and promotions we have to offer.”

Planning has been happening for several months now as Penrith Chamber of Trade and the Festival team, led by Acorn Marketing have been working with and looking at new ways to get more businesses involved and to attract more people to the town.  Current plans include an #ElfieSelfie Competition, ‘Paint the Town Red’ event where you will be able to upload your images to Discover Penrith’s Festival Galleries online, Christmas Jumper Day, Christmas themed Park Run, Santa’s Post box with Virgin Trains, Totally Locally’s Fiver Fest & Small Business Saturday and festive music from the town band.

This year will also see ‘Penrith Sparkle’ with more Christmas Lights, including a Carol Concert involving local schools and community groups and also a new Christmas Market that will run in the two weekends leading up to Christmas all made possible by Penrith BID and promoted by Discover Penrith.

Penrith Chamber of Trade is encouraging schools, community groups and businesses to get in touch and get involved with the Festival to make it even bigger and better than previous years.

“The funding and sponsorship we receive for the Festival really helps get things going, but participation from the local community and businesses is what really makes an event like this special, shows off the town and encourages people to visit time and time again.”  

Further announcements are due to be made about the Festival in the coming months.  To find out more or to get involved in the Festival visit

Penrith Winter Festival funding secured

Hunter Hall School – Back with a bang!

Thursday, September 10th, 2015

It was back to school for most of the country last week and Penrith’s Hunter Hall started the new term with a bang – shortlisted for Cumbria’s education awards the Golden Apples, appointment of new heads of school and a welcome back disco!

Great news to start the autumn term is that the independent school has been shortlisted for a ‘Golden Apple’ education award in the Early Years category.  The school received several nominations for its work with early year’s pupils and will find out if they have won in a prestigious event held at Carlisle Racecourse in October.

Early Years is a crucial part of a child’s education and the early year’s team reinforce the philosophy that every child deserves the best possible start.  Within the Foundation Stage Unit there is provision for Nursery children aged 3 to 4 along with Reception children aged 4 to 5 years.

What makes early year’s education so special at Hunter Hall and why they have been shortlisted for this award, is that they strive to provide creativity within their innovative early year’s curriculum.  This is fostered through a connection to nature & the unique environment around school. Exploration, discovery and interaction are part of the daily routine with learning which is fun, active and meaningful to the children.

Inspection visits from the Independent Schools Inspectorate have highlighted the high quality teaching and learning, through outstanding provision and stimulating indoor and outdoor environments.

Foundation Stage Manager Jennie Cross comments,

“Our Early Years team feel truly privileged to be teaching & preparing a whole new generation of children for their exciting first experiences of school life and are delighted to have been shortlisted for such an award.”

As well as the awards, individual children have been appointed Heads of School this week. Alexa Weymouth was appointed Head of School and will be helped by her deputies: Harvey Johnston (Head Boy) and Emily Airey (Head Girl). Together they aim to keep the school in ship shape fashion, helping the younger children and looking after new entrants.

Other children who have been given new responsibilities at the school include Rhiannon Thomas as Head Librarian, Boys Games Captains Lewis Elliott and Finlay Hansford and Girls Games Captains Keira Butler and Bethany Cater.

House Captains have also been selected including Amelia Bloomer and Toby Scott for the Squirrels, Arabella Barker-Bland and Dylan Hind for Hares, Oliver Bird and Beth Stafford for Badgers and Angus Fleming and Katie Parmenter for Foxes.

Finally, staff, pupils and parents welcomed new starters to the school in various years with their annual ‘Welcome Back’ Disco on Friday 11th September.  It is an enjoyable event for the children, a lovely way to end the first week of term and is a great way for new children (and their parents) to get to know their classmates just that little bit better whilst they strut a few moves!

New Look for Penrith’s Building Society

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

Penrith Building Society branch and head office are to be refurbished at the end of July.  The Society will be closed to the public for just one morning on Saturday 25th July while the builders get to work, the painters charge up their brushes and the technology and furniture is upgraded.


Over the past few years the society, which opened its doors in 1877, has undergone a transformation as the demand from customers for modern technology and competition in the financial services sector has increased. The Society’s branding changes began in 2012 assisted by Acorn Marketing and Jili Allen Creative that gave the society a modern new look, and which better reflected its traditional roots, its range of products and its unique customer services proposition.

A number of local people and businesses have been involved in the redesign project from Acorn Marketing, Jili Allen Creative, AST Signs to Margaret Barrow from MBI Office Furniture whilst the building work, will be undertaken by Atkinson Building Contractors and associated sub contractors Sissons and Lewis Contracting. Customers will see modern new furniture and signage, but which will keep its traditional feel and features.  The main office area and cashiers desks will be realigned to make the area more welcoming and easier to navigate, whilst consultation areas will be added to allow customers to talk about their personal financial affairs in private with specially trained customer representatives and mortgage advisors.  New signage, lighting and furnishings will add to the fresh new look, which will give the Society a brighter and more welcoming atmosphere.

Amyn Fazal, CEO of Penrith Building Society commented,

“People should remember that Penrith has its own local building society and as financial services have increased in complexity, so has the demand from customers and business associates. We have served local people for generations and we now also have an increasingly national presence which I see as a Cumbrian export. The interior has been in need of a well needed update for some time now and our changes will ensure that Penrith Building Society retains its place as one of Penrith’s iconic and flagship businesses. We have listened to feedback from customers and staff and have acted to ensure the changes that are made are complementary to the traditional values of the Society, yet give us a fresh and modern new look.”  

The major refurbishment work will start on Saturday 25th July when the branch will be closed for that one morning only.   However the team will be on hand at Penrith Show to talk to customers more about the plans and future developments.  The Building Society will be open as usual from Monday 27th July with a formal launch taking place soon after when customers and invited business colleagues will be able to meet staff and directors.