The Harry Hotspur Group is a food and drinks business based on the Holy Island of Lindisfarne, a tidal island one mile off the coast of Northumberland in the UK. The group is owned by three entrepreneurs with well over 130 years of business experience between them. Established in 2012 it was set up with a vision to help preserve and expand niche heritage food and drink businesses in Northumbria. The group runs several businesses including The Alnwick Brewery Company, The Alnwick Rum Company and our famed Lindisfarne Limited Mead business.The businesses all have long rooted foundations. Lindisfarne traces its initial production back to the late 1950s, Alnwick Rum to 1914 and The Alnwick Brewery even earlier to the mid 1800s. In 2016 we continued our expansion by acquiring a small brewery at Alnwick ,the capital of Northumberland, and established a distribution base next to it.
The company traces its production back to the late 1950s.The inspiration for Lindisfarne and its traditional meads dates to the 7th Century and the rich ecclesiastical history of the Island from the time of St Aidan’s monastery founded on the Island in 643AD: indeed, aspects of its mead production date back even further to the time of the Roman occupation. Our branding incorporates the striking graphics and distinctive visual signature inspired by the magnificent Lindisfarne Gospels crafted by Bishop Eadfrith on Holy Island at around 700AD.
Our brand is known across the world and has at some time been sold in far off reaches such as Hong Kong, Taiwan, Canada & the USA. With over 2,500,000 bottes of our Original sold we have a strong following.
Based on the tidal island of Lindisfarne 1 mile into the North Sea and linked to England by a causeway the Island regularly receives over half a million visitors each year, many of whom visit our shop.
We sell a huge range of products. A variety of traditional meads (our Original, Spiced, Dark and Pink) along with a range of fruit wines and spirit drinks such as our Toffee Vodka & Wild Peach Vodka -all produced and bottled at our winery on this Holy Island.
These are available for tasting at our tasting bar.
New this year is our unique Lindisfarne Gin produced by our sister company The Alnwick Rum & Spirts Company which includes in it Meadowsweet that can be found growing on the island and our new Viking range of meads that are being released throughout 2021.
Our craft shop holds probably the widest range of local artefacts that can be found in one location in the region and is highly popular with all the tourists visiting.
We are open 360 days of the year; just check the tide time before coming to see us.
Founded in 1914, The Alnwick Rum & Spirits Company has grown to become one of the country’s acclaimed niche rum companies. Starting off as a one product business with is its uniquely blended “Legendary Dark Rum”, a favourite amongst sailors and fisherman in the Northeast, after being acquired by the Harry Hotspur Holdings group in 2013, the business started to expand into new levels.
Now the proud owner of a full range of rums and liqueurs, Alnwick Rum consists of the original ‘Legendary’ dark rum supported by the exotic ‘Golden Spiced’ and a smoothly blended white sipping rum ‘White Knight’.
As well as this, Alnwick Rum now produces the Holy Island Rum range consisting of the majorly popular and award worthy Holy Island Spiced Rum.
In 2018 the business resurrected its 1950’s Glen Aln Whisky, a blend of fine scotch malt and grain whiskies and in 2021 released the now in-demand Lindisfarne Gin in line with our vision to expand across the full spirit market.
All these fantastic products can be seen proudly displayed in our own retail outlet; A Taste of Northumbria, the home of Alnwick Rum, located in Alnwick Market place. This outlet has quickly become a go-to location for tourists visiting the historical town. We are proud to have such an iconic historical figurehead in Sir Henry Percy as the focus point around our new sophisticated branding. Famously he was known as ‘Harry Hotspur’ and Northumberland’s most lionhearted warrior whose family lived in Alnwick Castle.
With the business never slowing down there are always lots of exciting opportunities and adventures in the pipeline including global exports, moving into and expanding our new wholesale business, more new products and its branded series of nightclub events. Be sure to look out for Alnwick Rum in a bar, shop, restaurant, theatre, festival or even at a historical landmark.
The Alnwick Brewery Company Limited initially started to brew beer in Alnwick from around 1750’s from a site in the town’s Dispensary Street. Sadly, in the 1960’s the buildings were pulled down before they could be listed, and the brewery temporarily closed only to be relaunched again in 2005 by the son of the original brewery’s last managing director.
In 2013 the business was acquired by the Harry Hotspur group who also merged into it the significant brewing skills and brewery of another local brewer (namely the former VIP Brewery at Hawkhill).
Since 2016 this integrated business has been focused on building its brewing capacity and extending its product range. From an initial selection of 5 traditional beers namely its range of casks and bottles of IPA, Amber, Stout, Brown & Gold the business has now expanded its product range. In addition to a lager, it now produces our Holy Island beer range, initially only Lindisfarne Brown and Holy Island Bitter, but in 2020 launched a wider range of more modern hoppy beers including,
-St Aidan, a citrus flavoured Cascade
-Whiteblade a light hoppy beer &
-St Cuthbert a light session pale ale
With the popularity for our brews ever increasing we recently launched a refreshing more modern looking branded range of beers in cans which are proving to be extremely popular.
Coming out of lockdown and with the growing focus on staycations our 5 litre containers of beer are being constantly sought-after for all sorts of special social events. And there is more in the pipeline, a new exciting cider will be launched soon.
As we mature, we are also now finding significant demand for us to support smaller businesses with their own bespoke products, particularly those outlets who value locally produced beers.
During the 2020 lockdown work began on the next stage of our journey. We have now created a Brewery Tap and outdoor garden area at our Hawkhill location at Alnwick which is attracting tourists and local visitors alike. Our vision is to next develop the site into a fully blown Visitor Centre that will attract visitors who may want to visit the brewery, see how it is done and enjoy both a beer and some great food now also available there.
Look out for our beers which are now being stock in a great many pubs and restaurants.
The group was also chosen to be included in the 2017/2018 Parliamentary Review of Industry a document to half a million around the world showcasing Britain’s best.